As I have participated in various group discussion and on various forum of RPA, I came across with many questions which I have asked or someone else have asked about RPA. I thought it to share with you all about what are those questions and best answers we could find on those.
I would be happy to answer if you have any more questions on RPA, You can also see other article RPA-A good career choice in India
What is RPA
This is most basic question comes in any mind who is new at all about RPA. So describing the concept below.
RPA , as the name suggests, enables us to automate processes. usually many imagine that using these tools someone can build physical robots. But that’s not the case. These robots are the software which enables us to create process flow programs and business objects, which are then deployed to virtual machines. The virtual machines act as robots and perform the actions like a human would do. The actions may include logging into applications, browsing them, extracting data, moving the data, creating new Ms Office files, sending e-mails and many, many more.
So in short, these are the software through which someone can automate the existing repetitive process which is done by any human.
How BPM and RPA are different
BPMS (Business Process Management Software) and RPA (Robotic Process Automation) are not in conflict with each other, instead RPA automation extends and compliment BPM. BPM is a broader term which focuses on identifying, design, documenting and optimizing a company’s business process to achieve an organization strategic goals using various software applications. So we can say BPM is about making sure the infrastructure of your business process is solid, this infrastructure may include automated and non automated business processes.
RPA on other hand we can say it is just a sub-domain of BPM which focus on automating and operating an existing process as a human would, in place of implementing whole new infrastructure.
Consider this analogy to self-driving cars: a BPM approach would require us to rip up all paved roads and install infrastructure for the new cars to move about on their own, while an RPA approach seeks to operate a pre-existing car just as a human would. Google has come at the problem from an RPA point of view, because replacing all roads is not possible at all. That’s not to say that RPA is always the better option – not at all. The key is knowing the difference and using both tactics to their best advantage.
How UI Path (RPA tool) is different from Selenium
Selenium is specifically designed to to test web applications and websites, it is impossible in selenium to interact with multiple applications and taking output of one application as an input for other application. It can not work with Virtual environments like Ctrix and Virtual Machines etc at all.
While UI Path is an RPA tool which is designed to automate any type of existing software process to replace any type of activities that can be performed by human.
So we can say RPA is the next level of existing automation tools. It allow people to build a very complex rules based process with very little software development skills.
You can do all things using UI Path which can be done by Selenium but vise versa is not.
What is the difference between UI Path and Blueprism
UI Path is extremely user friendly, below are some key points
- Speed of implementation would be very high but anyone who has worked on it can sense the delay problem that has to be improved upon.
- Can be used for various integration services with different workflow modules hence scoring high on re usability.
- Citrix environment automation and desktop contribute to major pros of this tool. The architecture of the tool ensures future proof, meaning it can evolve in unbelievable measures.
- It has a free community edition allowing everyone to download and learn with umpteen number of learning PDF’s and videos available online
- Only con is lack of control. No coding. Neither C# nor VB script can be run.
Coming to Blue prism, it has better control of code
- Enterprise grade RPA solution tool with extreme control over activities and point blank approach towards object creation, coding and automation implementation. Its difficult to go wrong when coding can be done.
- Speed of implementation can be controlled (which is very high) by anchoring browser based automation and through, I say it again, coding. Check for element and other features, like waiting until object exists in a page of a browser with three modes namely, accessibility, HTML and region mode giving more options and control over selection and accuracy.
- The code insertion part gives Blue Prism an edge over other RPA tools but, other tools like Automation Anywhere and UI Path have been very successful in making it user friendly.
- Whereas other automation tools are designed very well for some processes and are lacking in a few others, Blue Prism have the capacity to automate almost anything without any exception.
What is the difference between Automation anywhere ,Blueprism and UI Path
UiPath and AA offer both front office and back office robots, while BP has only back office (batch automation / unnatended automation). The front office is also known as attended automation or RDA Robotic Desktop Automation.
Another difference is that:
UiPath control room – The Orchestrator – is web based, you can access it from the browser or mobile. AA and BP have client based servers, accessible only through their apps.
AA is more script based, while UI and BP have visual process designers. This means you need to have better programming skills to use AA.
AA and UiPath have Macro Recorders, a feature that will get you up to speed in process mapping, while BP lacks this feature, due to their rather outdated technology. They say this is due to security constraints but a recorder is just a useful tool that you can choose not to use. The recorded actions can also be tweaked and changed as per your needs.
Beside these there are specific differences when it comes to automation techniques. You need to consider your process and the steps taken to automate. UiPath Robotic process Automation shines in Citrix and was specifically designed for BPO Automation, based on client insights.
What is the difference between RPA and Macros
Clerical Robotic Automation is a not a generation of old technologies like screen scraping or macros. Macros had some limitation and they worked with specific software only. The major features a RPA have which macros does not have:
• Robots are universal application orchestrater – any application that can be used by a person can be used by a modern robot, whether mainframe, legacy, bespoke application, web service enabled or even a closed 3rd party API hosted service.
• Applications are “read” by the robot, either through dedicated APIs where they exist, through the OS prior to application display, or through the screen in the context of the native application. In this last case the modern robot “reads” an application screen in context and in the same way a user does. As part of the robot training it is shown how to read the application’s display much like a user is shown.
• Robots collect procedural knowledge which over time build into a shared library that can re-used by any other robot or device (in the same way objects are built in traditional SW engineering).
What is UI Path Community Edition Expiry Duration
The Community edition needs a refresh every 2 months. This means that you have to send them your device ID, using the below link and they will refresh the license for you for next 2 months. Not sure if they continue to extend this licence for how many more months.
There are many more questions related to UI Path are answered on below article
Has anyone currently lost a job because of a robot taking their place?
Yes, In my previous company there was a process where around 60 data analyst used to match data from multiple different site on the base of some defined logic. Now that process has been automated using RPA tool and whole team has been fired. But I don’t think there is anything to worry. Our world have gone through such transformation from many years. And such transformation really makes our life more meaningful in long run
You can also go through below link to see how vulnerable your job is to robot.
I will keep adding more question and answers on this page, Feel free to ask if you have any question in comment section below.