Deciding on the robotic process automation operating model: A checklist for RPA managers

Aleksandre Asatiani, Olli Copeland, Esko Penttinen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)
140 Downloads (Pure)


Robotic process automation (RPA) has emerged as a technology promising various quick wins: fast deployment, immediate efficiency gains, and low investment requirements. While these promises have resulted in large-scale deployment of RPA in diverse industries, the choice of operating model remains tricky. This article identifies three key decisions for RPA managers: (1) the who decision, pertaining to selection of internal versus external resources for RPA development; (2) the how decision, on whether the organization will pursue RPA deployment on-premises or through the cloud; and (3) the what decision, on whether to employ proprietary RPA tools or an open-source solution. To shed light on how these decisions are made and to pinpoint their interdependencies, seven organizations’ choices connected with these three decisions are presented. The study's main contribution is a decision checklist that can facilitate RPA managers’ navigation of the decision-making process, their gathering of relevant information, and their choice of the model best matching the organization's needs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-121
Number of pages13
JournalBusiness Horizons
Issue number1
Early online date24 Mar 2022
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Robotic process automation (RPA)
  • Operating model
  • Organizational deployment
  • Sourcing
  • Cloud


Dive into the research topics of 'Deciding on the robotic process automation operating model: A checklist for RPA managers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this