Workshop: Automation for Everyone: How Enterprise Companies & Startups Can Use RPA to Save Time and Money

About this Workshop

Instructor:  John Pavley (Senior Vice President of Software Engineering, Viacom)


“RPA takes the robot out of the human. The average knowledge worker employed on a back-office process has a lot of repetitive, routine tasks that are dreary and uninteresting. RPA is a type of software that mimics the activity of a human being in carrying out a task within a process. It can do repetitive stuff more quickly, accurately, and tirelessly than humans, freeing them to do other tasks requiring human strengths such as emotional intelligence, reasoning, judgment, and interaction with the customer… Business-operations people can learn quite quickly how to configure and apply the robots.” – Leslie Willcocks (McKinsey Digital)

What is Robotic Process Automation (RPA), why is it being called the most disruptive technology to impact business in decades, and how will it affect you?

Workshop Instructor: John Pavley (SVP of Software Engineering, Viacom)

We are at the precipice of a revolution in business innovation. In the past, organizations outsourced high-volume, back office production and IT operations to cheap foreign labor in other parts of the world. But that outsourced labor is quickly being replaced by the new kid on the block — RPA.

The total contract value for outsourced and managed services has declined from $138 billion in 2007 to $62.7 billion in 2017. Meanwhile, experts are predicting that the RPA market will grow to a $5 billion by 2020 from just $183 million in 2013. (

Digital labor is now cheaper, faster and more productive than old school, outsourced labor ever was. And businesses are seeing immediate ROI (with potential ROI of 30-200% in the first year alone).

RPA robots are capable of mimicking most human user actions. They log into applications, move files and folders, copy and paste data, fill in forms, extract structured and semi-structured data from documents, scrape browsers, and more. For example, this bank redesigned its claims process by deploying 85 bots to run 13 processes, handling 1.5 million requests per year. The bank added capacity equivalent to more than 200 full-time employees at approximately 30 percent of the cost of recruiting more staff.

For businesses, part of the appeal of using bots is that they are typically low-cost and easy to implement. While RPA undoubetedly will cause a certain number of job eliminations, it will also create new opportunities for employees to channel their time and talents to more meaningful work within the company or to upskill by learning to work with RPA (No Degree Needed – $3 Billion RPA Company UiPath Offers Free Path To Career Opportunities – Forbes). That’s where this workshop comes in!

What We’ll Cover

We will address the problems of RPA today from a business and employee perspective as well as the benefits.  It’s not a panacea—not yet. But long term supervising and training computers and robots is probably what we will mostly be doing all day in manufacturing, hospitality, medicine, entertainment, food services. I’m including “stepping stone” and “life preservers” in the talk as metaphors for surviving and thriving in a world where technological change is only accelerating.” — John Pavley (workshop Instructor)

Instructor, John Pavely (Senior Vice President of Software Engineering at Viacom) will provide a thorough overview and examination of the exponential rise of RPA in business and its impact on enterprise companies, small businesses and startups. He will also review how executives, managers, and employees are impacted by RPA and how they can use RPA to improve their output and to explore new career opportunities. But there is a lot of hype out there and people need to ask really hard questions before embracing a technology driven change in companies — John Pavley will cover that in this workshop as well (discerning the hype from the real deal). And finally, through hands-on in-class exercises (bring your laptop!), attendees will learn how to develop real RPA processes.

Takeaways include learning:

  • What RPA is and how businesses get value out of it (business executives, IT staff, non-technical employees, business owners and entrepreneurs)?
  • How data scientists, analytics workers, white color workers, and non-technical, administrative workers can learn RPA and use it elevate their career and explore new opportunities;
  • How RPA interacts with AI and Machine Learning tools;
  • The ethics of RPA (including how automating business processes that delete jobs is changing corporate culture); and
  • “Robots for Hire” — how startups and small business that don’t have tens of thousands of dollars to invest in RPA can implement RPA today, at a low cost, to remain competitive.

There will be an exercise to be completed in our online forum during the workshop. Please bring a laptop or mobile device to access the internet.

Who Is This Workshop For?

Although attendees will learn how to develop and implement RPA, there are no prerequisites or specific technical experience necessary to participate (that is the beauty of RPA – anyone can learn to do it fairly quickly).

This workshop is open to everyone and is ideal for technical employees (IT managers, developers, engineers, etc.), non-technical employees (administrative, creative, etc.), entrepreneurs, small business owners, professionals in industries that will most impacted by RPA in the immediate (accounting, banking and finance, etc.)

John Pavley, SVP of Software Engineering, Viacom

John Pavley, Senior Vice President of Software Engineering, Viacom

John Pavley is a technology leader with over two decades of experience in mobile, web, server, and desktop applications. Pavley rode the personal computer wave from the first graphical user interfaces to the World Wide Web to the on-going mobile metamorphosis. Along that way he has worked with some of the greatest people at many of the most innovative companies on earth: Apple, DoubleClick, Yahoo!, LimeWire, Spotify, Huffington Post, and currently Viacom. Pavley is also an Adjunct Instructor at NYU.

Pavley has led teams at startups, tech companies, and media companies. He has led the design and development of award winning products, such as Apple’s ClarisWorks for Kids, DoubleClick’s DART5, Spotify’s streaming radio service, and HuffPost’s verified identify. But his absolute favorite thing to do is to recruit and lead product development teams with an insanely productive agile processes and world-class teams.

Right now Pavley is obsessed with functional programming, getting more kids into coding, how mobile transforms (and keeps transforming) everything, and Apple’s new programming lingo Swift.

As VP of Digital Media at GV, Katie Bofshever crafts innovative and creative solutions for the digital space, specializing in minority consumers.

Read John’s blog post: The Voices of Software Development

Workshop Agenda

Download PDF version HERE.

Start Time

6:00 pm

June 24, 2019

Finish Time

9:00 pm

May 24, 2019



Event Participants