Automation Anywhere (AA) Review

While the bot creation process is simple to understand, the Control Room can be confusing

What is our primary use case?

The primary use case is to free up people to do more cognitive tasks, taking those repetitive tasks and doing those for them.

How has it helped my organization?

We have quite a few good use cases going on, such as:

  • We have a credit card deactivation process, where we determine someone is leaving the company, then we run different reports. Then, it deactivates their credit card, so they are unable to use it anymore. This saves us in extra expenses, e.g., if they were to make charges after they left the company. 
  • We have saved a lot of money on taxes based on the stuff that we run. 

We have a plethora of good use cases saving good, hard dollars.

What is most valuable?

The client and the way the code is laid out are very nice for developers. 

The interface is a lot better than a lot of other tools which are out there.

It is pretty easy for developers to use. I have trained quite a few people, and everyone seems to pick it up pretty well.

What needs improvement?

In the debugging mode, it writes all the logs to text files, but it doesn't ever clean them up. We had one that got to 200K, and it bogged our whole machine down. We couldn't figure out what was going on until we found out that we had a 200K file sitting out there. We would like some sort of maintenance on the log files going forward. 

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We have seen some inconsistencies with stuff, environmentally.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The company started the pilot a year and a half ago. That phase was probably six or seven months. Then, it took a little over a year to get it up and running. We also did an upgrade to the newest version, and that took some time. Overall, it took about a year to scale up our bots.

If you previously used a different solution, which one did you use and why did you switch?

This solution was brand-new. This was our first run on RPA.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was pretty straightforward. It was just a normal on-premise setup for three environments.

What about the implementation team?

We used a consulting firm for the deployment. They were good. 

What was our ROI?

Currently, we are not looking to eliminate people. We are looking to save time or generate revenue. Cost avoidance is pretty big for us.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

We have 10 licenses right now.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

It is pretty easy to use. Personally, I do a lot of development, so I like the line-by-line code versus some of the other solutions, like Blue Prism or UiPath, which have a more drag and drop workflow. 

What other advice do I have?

Give it a try. It lives up to what it says it can do, for the most part. It really does help free up stuff. Just make sure you pick the right processes. A lot of the issues that people have with it are with not selecting the right processes for what the tool can do.

We have had some success integrating this solution with other applications. We have also had some failures. We had some issues integrating it with SAP, but we started using MetaBots to do that, which seems to work really well. It does seem to work pretty well with most applications that we have integrated it with.

The bot creation process is good. It is pretty simple to understand. If anything, the Control Room is the most confusing part, but it is still pretty simple. 

I have not taken courses on the Automation Anywhere University, but I have been using this solution for a long time. So, I would be the right clientele for the University.

We haven't really done anything with the cognitive document processing nor Citrix.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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