Home How RPA is Used at The Virginia Department of Transportation

How RPA is Used at The Virginia Department of Transportation

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The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is the agency of the state government responsible for transportation in the state of Virginia in the United States. VDOT is headquartered at the Virginia Department of Highways Building in downtown Richmond. VDOT is responsible for building, maintaining, and operating the roads, bridges, and tunnels in the commonwealth. It is overseen by the Commonwealth Transportation Board, which has the power to fund airports, seaports, rail, and public transportation.

VDOT’s IT Division stood up the Business Enablement Services Team to bring together the agency’s IT and business units to find opportunities for automation and then develop RPA tools and other low- and no-code applications to boost efficiency.

“If there is a repeatable task being performed on a computer somewhere, then we see that as a candidate for intelligent automation. We see it as filling a huge gap in our solution portfolio.”

Robert Osmond, Chief of Technology and Business Strategy, VDOT

Traditionally, he said, VDOT has had two options for incorporating IT into its operations: through manual work or expensive custom or commercial applications. Intelligent automation is another way to provide targeted solutions that can quickly augment business processes. When these tools are co-created with the business units, they tend to be more popular with end-users, Osmond said. As a result, technology is increasingly becoming part of every job in the department.

“The trucks that we use, they’re becoming mobile IT platforms with computers and wireless networks. Our tunnels, our bridges, our corridors, and our buildings are becoming sprinkled with sensors and becoming increasingly intelligent. Our field forces, they’re all using tablets and robots to make work safer and more efficient.”

Robert Osmond, Chief of Technology and Business Strategy, VDOT

VDOT encourages workers who need to move data from one system to another to consider RPA after the department used it to successfully move data between financial systems and transfer work order data from a service management application to an application development system.

“For example, we use a tool called Ivanti to manage our service management — that’s our customer requests for IT goods and services. We use Microsoft Team Foundation Server to manage our code development. We created an automation to take the parts of the service requests and transition that into the Team Foundation Server. That allowed us to maintain the continuity of the data and also saved time. In the office, where repetitive tasks can be very dull, the duller the task, the better the candidate for automation. Our advice for people that are looking for opportunities to automate is to look for those process pain points.”

Robert Osmond, Chief of Technology and Business Strategy, VDOT

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