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Blue Prism Cloud Competitors and Alternatives

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IB
Senior RPA Developer at a marketing services firm with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
Reduces costs, frees up employees, and makes building automations easy

Pros and Cons

  • "We had a cost reduction of approximately 20% in our operations."
  • "If I can get a little bit more data and a little bit more customization on Orchestrator, that would be really great."

What is our primary use case?

We have automated tasks within our organization and are automating our marketing applications. Internally, we have automated in-person and webinar event creation for Microsoft. Whenever there is a request for creating an event that is covered on, for example, either on Jira or the Dynamics 365 application, the task makes an API and pulls data from both sources. It then creates an event on Marketo. It runs totally unattended. We have actually saved the build time that was previously around 45 minutes and we have reduced it to just four minutes.

How has it helped my organization?

Previously, we had a build time of around 45 minutes just to process one request. This was kind of a disaster because even in 45 minutes of build time, and this is the average build time, people were making mistakes. When these errors happened, the company had to actually pay money to the client. For example, if a company has an event at 3:00 PM on September 1st, and due to time zone issues, someone manually wrote \ 4:00 PM then people would arrive at 4:00 PM, whereas the event had started at 3:00 PM. Mistakes like that could become a very, very big issue.

Using UiPath, we were able to reduce these kinds of errors. We were also able to reduce the time by more than 90%, just by deploying the bot that could do API calls in order to complete a specific point of data gathering.

For the portion that we automated, the errors that were happening were reduced to 0% and the efficiency was up to 90%.

What is most valuable?

We've found the usability of Studio very easy. It's simple to understand everything. It's very simple to just start developing within UiPath. 

The Orchestrator is fantastic in terms of usability as all you have to do is just need to deploy your bot there. It gives you several options of how to schedule it, how to monitor it, and it also gives you the dashboard that allows you to see the performance of your bot.

I really like the fact that we have a cloud model, where we can actually go ahead and use their cloud to run our bot. That is a very good kind of feature. 

I really like AI fabric and the documented understanding model, as that actually allows us to do a couple of very complex POCs. They went very well and right now, those prefaces are currently in the pipeline. Hopefully, they will get started with them next month.

The ease of building automation using UiPath is very easy. When it comes to comparing it against other tools, UiPath might be the easiest one. It's totally subjective, of course. That said, there are scenarios where automating certain kinds of scenarios with UiPath is not that easy. Overall, it's pretty good at automating all kinds of stuff.

UiPath enables us to implement end-to-end automation. End-to-end coverage is very important. While working with clients like Microsoft and Google, we have to actually go ahead and make sure that you're actually providing all of these kinds of services. With services such as documentation you also need to be on top of the latest market trends. UiPath actually provides us with not only the ability to handle all of this but to also document all of these kinds of things. That is available, either as a part of some other products or is embedded within the Studio itself as a part of an extension. That is something that I really like as that actually reduces the time that I invest in the creation of the documents. That, and the client actually requires all of these documents before even we can go ahead with the contract, makes having them on hand so important. 

The Automation cloud has helped decrease time to value. Earlier, the deployment of an on-prem Orchestrator took around two to three days for proper configuration and for making sure that there's a disaster recovery mechanism. Automation cloud has everything built already within it, which makes things faster and easier. This reduces the amount of time that is required by us to deliver. Within our area of work, within marketing, time is everything. Once you have taken on the project, the client expects you to deliver it as soon as possible. The requirements that you're getting from the client are very, very time-sensitive. If you're essentially not delivering it on time, that is going to be an issue. Automation Cloud actually helps us to do that without thinking about other things. It actually goes ahead and does a couple of things for us that we don't have to worry about, such as deploying the Orchestrator on the cloud, making sure that everything is properly set up, and making sure that the disaster recovery option is there. These kinds of things actually save us days of time for installation, if not days of debugging time. 

It's very important for our company to scale up automation without having to pay attention to infrastructure. There are a couple of projects that we have where we don't really care about the infrastructure. If it is handled by UiPath, it's absolutely fine. However, for example, in the case of some of our elite clients, what happens is that they actually need to know the details and how data is being propagated amongst different servers. If we're not controlling the environment, if we're not handling the entire knowledge, we won't be able to give them the same thing and the project might go away just because of this fact. Therefore, I'm not saying it's not very important. It's actually very, very important. That's why we use both services that are provided by UiPath - both on-prem and cloud. That said, if we have projects where we don't need to worry about it, it's nice to have the option not to.

UiPath has helped us minimize our on-premise footprint. Their customer service has actually helped us reduce that. UiPath was released in 2015. There are experts on this particular thing in the market, and most of those experts are found via UiPath only. When help is provided by UiPath themselves, that can actually resolve the issue in a matter of hours rather than days.

We use attended automation. We usually use attended automation within the HR department. Basically, we're using it for onboarding, for monthly salary management. It's great for automating some of the basic SAP projects as these are the places where we require human interaction, either to handle the credential part or to provide some inputs. This actually helps bring confidence into the process and also phases out the work of a particular human. Automation has integrated with some human day-to-day jobs so well that now when employees come in, the primary thing that they have to do is just to trigger the bot and start providing input. Work that they used to do for the first half of the day, is completed in the first hour of the day. That's the kind of benefit that is being provided by attended automation.

There is good AI functionality and we use it for some proof of concept projects. That said, we haven't yet used it for more complex or involved automation or processes just yet. We have one project in the pipeline that we have to start working on this month. 

We use UiPath Apps. We use UiPath Apps as a form. Essentially, we have created UiPath Apps in such a way that helps HR people to onboard individuals. For example, whenever someone has to get onboarded, they have to actually provide some details in terms of who they are, their previous company, and some other basic details. Also, HR will need to provide some extra details, in terms of who will be the individual's manager, et cetera. Finally, IT has to assign some kind of role. What we have actually done, is we have created an app where a user or a new individual has to actually provide all the information. Then, HR just needs to select the particular role. Everything is pre-configured. We automatically assign specific roles. In terms of IT, we can now automatically assign specific resources such as laptops, monitors, or headsets to that particular person. Since everything is automated, within a couple of minutes of registration the person receives his new ID password and details. Instead of waiting for an entire day, it happens in just a matter of one or two minutes.

UiPath Apps has increased the number of automation we can create while reducing the time it takes to create them. Earlier, we used to create automation, in terms of forms. Those automations were types of attended automation. A person had to have specific access to that particular computer before doing this kind of work. In this scenario, the issue we had was that every time it was not possible to handle manual steps if we were onboarding ten people at a time. Everyone had to wait for their turn and that was not very efficient. What we have done is we have actually deployed UiPath Apps whose links can actually get loaded onto an individual's mobile. One just needs to open it on their mobile and get started. That's it. Everything executes parallelly. We have also made our system scalable so that multiple VMs can learn the process at the same time.

UiPath speeds up and reduces the cost of digital transformation. Doing so does not require expensive or complex application upgrades or IT support.

We have found that UiPath has reduced human error. We were getting some human errors related to time zone issues and some of the other issues such as daylight savings. There were several other issues related to accidental typing or of people not focusing properly, even after several integrations. That's part of the reason we went ahead and automated processes. Obviously, a bot only follows what you have programmed it, what you have programmed within it. The errors are literally reduced to zero within that specific section.

UiPath has freed up employee time. We have actually retrained the freed-up employees into UiPath to act as support engineers. As a rough guess, I would say that we have saved around 120 hours a week just by deploying UiPath.

The additional time enabled employees to focus on more essential work. For people who were actually acting as build personnel, we have re-deployed them as a person who actually interacts directly with clients or who does QA work. This is a higher position that comes with a higher salary as well. There have been promotions simply due to implementing UiPath.

Employees are pretty happy. Initially, everyone was scared that they might lose their jobs. However, but adopting UiPath methods and retraining people, some are even getting promoted and we find that they are actually encouraging automation processes so that new work can come in and the remaining people could also get on better.

The product has reduced the cost of our automation operations. In terms of marketing operations, for example, it has reduced the cost. Along with the help of similar investments, we need fewer people and more bots currently. That's definitely a big thing for us. We had a cost reduction of approximately 20% in our operations. This is just a ballpark. That said, overall, UiPath has saved our organization a lot of costs. I cannot speak to exact savings, as that requires business knowledge, which I do not have complete access to. 

What needs improvement?

The AI Center area could definitely improve. The StudioX model could also improve just a little bit so that the introduction of variables is better and would make it possible to pass on a similar kind of data in between multiple activities. This is a very simple concept, however, this kind of feature is not available within UiPath. 

From the business perspective, a little bit more insight on the dashboard that is currently available in Orchestrator would be ideal. I agree with UiPath having a dedicated tool for insights, however, right now, it's a paid tool. 

If I can get a little bit more data and a little bit more customization on Orchestrator, that would be really great.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using UiPath for three years and eight months. I've used it for the same amount of time the company has used it.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The product is quite stable now. There are certainly some places where UiPath has to work, specifically in terms of actual stability, where there are still some unknown errors that are coming in. 

In terms of Orchestrator, I have noticed there are some places where there are glitches. Things are not very clear at first as everything is changing quite quickly, I'll say that. Even in the enterprise version, everyone wants to be on the very latest version. However, there is a drastic change between the versions themselves.

For example, 2019, 2020, and 2021 versions, all three are drastically different amongst themselves. This kind of change is definitely good for the provider in that they are doing something better. However, as a consumer, I don't really want to go ahead and go through an entire learning curve all over again along with handling my current job of handling all the work, just so that I can cope up with what changes the product team has made. It should not be necessary to go through this level of adjustment for each and every release. At this point, I have been through three to four migrations and in each migration, I have gone through some kind of a learning curve.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Automation Cloud actually helps us to rapidly scale up. We don't have to invest time now in configuring Orchestrator, or the cloud version of UiPath. All we have to do is we just need to basically request for a particular package and, maybe, either with the help of a package or with the help of the UiPath team, it is pre-configured for us. That way, we just need to utilize it. Therefore, scaling is simple.

The scalability is great. It has actually allowed us to schedule the bots or maintain the bots in multiple VMs without having any worries about how to utilize licenses, or how to actually go ahead and deploy the bots manually or install the bots manually on certain VMs. Everything is automated within the UiPath environment.

If we talk about attended users, right now, we have more than 10 people using attended bots. Their roles are essentially from the recruitment team, from HR. Some of the marketing staff are also using it in analyst positions. 

We definitely plan to increase usage and we're using UiPath pretty extensively. We have a couple of projects in the pipeline and currently, we're also working on some of the more complex projects within the team.

How are customer service and technical support?

All the projects are having a specific date of delivery. Everything is running parallel as we also follow an Agile method. In this Agile method, if something is stuck, it will eventually impact the date of delivery. And we really don't want that. UiPath actually helps us a lot by providing 24-hour support and it helps us in setting a lot of the items we need to use. They do it quite easily and quickly.

On the scale of one to ten, it's definitely a ten. Whenever I have a doubt, they are always there. They even offer to get on a call with them and actually go ahead and resolve the issue themselves, if they know how to do it. 

Many times, there have been scenarios where the issue was unique to us. They actually presented us with some debugging steps that we can do on our end. Most of the time, those debugging steps actually helped us to resolve the issue. When none of these options work, they were very keen to figure out how they could actually improve the experience and what could be implemented by the developers within those specific parts of the product in order to resolve the issue. We have given them feedback in the past and in a couple of future versions, we were able to see those ideas implemented.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We were using AutoHotkey before this product, as well as Selenium. However, after implementing UiPath, we have not used anything along with it.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward. The installation of the Studio was quite straightforward. We just had to go through all the legal terms and everything. Once we went through those, we just had to install it. The same thing is true for Orchestrator as the on-prem installation of Orchestrator is pretty straightforward. You just have to get the setup, link it with the skilled server, and then install it. 

Apart from that, the configuration within Orchestrator was very simple as there is only one file that allows us to log on to everything. It made it pretty obvious.

The deployment took somewhere around two days for the entire setup. 

In terms of the implementation strategy, firstly, we decided to set up all the databases and all the dashboard-related services such as Power BI. We decided to do this first due to the fact that the dashboards and databases are the base of any application. 

We decided to implement it first in Azure. On the same day, we decided to get the cloud version of the Orchestrator as well. It was quite easy in terms of Azure. There's a three-way plugin that is available there. We just had to install that on the specific VM and we were done. Finally, on the second day, we went ahead and installed all of the Studio. Once Orchestrator is up, we could install Studios and link them to Orchestrator in order to get the license. That was our strategy and our approach.

We essentially have one dedicated resource for maintaining all the deployments and to watch if anything goes wrong. We have three dedicated resources for maintaining all the bots that are currently running as well. We don't need a big team to maintain everything. 

What about the implementation team?

In one of our projects, we actually used Azure Cloud for the deployment of Orchestrator and the deployment of packages. The experience is quite good. Azure provides the DevOps side of our service that allows us to set up the pipeline and automatically deploy any kind of project to the Orchestrator as soon as it is committed.

What was our ROI?

While the company has likely been looking at ROI, I don't directly deal with those details.

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

A couple of our clients cannot actually go ahead with the initial investment of Orchestrator as it costs quite a lot. The thing is that we don't need that much of a license in order to automate our processes. Having a free version of a cloud or having a cheaper version of Orchestrator has actually helped a lot.

Automation Cloud helps decrease UiPath's total cost of ownership. However, overall, if we talk about scalability, once the number of licenses that I need increases, ultimately, Automation Cloud might be a bit expensive. It depends upon the version you're using. Yet, since the license cost is increasing, what happens is if you go ahead and buy more than five licenses, then essentially you would have been in better shape if you would've actually bought the paid version of Automation Cloud and installed it on-prem. That would've been a cheaper option. It's subjective. Our scenario is just that we need two unattended licenses to do the job.

Some of the clients do consider the initial investment of UiPath to be expensive. It's seen as expensive specifically from the cost of getting a licensing for an on-premises setup. For some projects, UiPath can be overkill. However, it is the best software a company can invest in for automation purposes. 

I cannot speak to the exact cost, as I don't handle licensing directly.

It's paid per year. We get licenses not directly from UiPath. Rather, we get them from a vendor.

There are additional costs as well. For example, the cost of an SQL server is one. We are definitely using the Azure product suite as well. We had to actually invest quite a lot in SQL Server in terms of database management, just to make sure that everything gets logged properly and that the Orchestrator is functioning properly. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We switched to UiPath after we compared multiple tools. We looked at certain parameters such as the ability to automate marketing tools, the ability to automate quickly, and how user-friendly it was. Out of all these three parameters, UiPath stood on top.

We looked at Automation Anywhere, Blue Prism, and PEGA.

What other advice do I have?

I specifically have been using the community version of UiPath. The company has been using the enterprise version.

We do use the Automation Cloud offering.

We do not use the SaaS version of the solution. 

I'd advise users to give it a try. I started my career in UiPath and since then I've been loving it. I became a UiPath MVP as I really enjoy working with the product so much.

That automation does not need to be very complex, so you don't need very complex tools to automate any software. Tools like UiPath can do most of your job.

I'd rate the solution at a nine out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Private Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Microsoft Azure
Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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HA
Head of RPA COE at a transportation company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 5
You don't have to code; it is just drag and drop

Pros and Cons

  • "The biggest driver was the cost savings. We wanted to improve productivity and save costs. Therefore, we gave most of the mundane tasks currently being done by a human to a bot. Some of the mundane tasks were reading invoices and keying in the data. We are talking about 15,000 documents every day. That is a huge volume that needs a lot of people. With the bot, it is just a fraction of the cost, because there is a huge savings in terms of manpower."
  • "They are still new in the market. Or, at least, they are still a small player. They require a lot of improvement in terms of learning material as well as the community developers. If you compare Jiffy.ai to an established solution, like UiPath, you can go to YouTube and find a lot of learning material posted by UiPath, partners, and other people in the community. However, for Jiffy.ai, you won't find that available in the market. Because of this it is very hard for us to find talent in the market. Most of the developers in the market are used to the bigger players. For Jiffy.ai, if you search a resume because you are trying to find someone who has used Jiffy.ai, you won't be able to find it. So, when we onboard a new person, we want them to learn this new system, but it is a bit hard for them to pick up because there are no external learning materials on the Internet."

What is our primary use case?

Our initial use cases are mainly for finance. We are doing account payable, accounts receivable, reconciliation, and those types of things with the automation. In terms of accounts payable, we automate the invoice processing since it is an end-to-end. This means that the vendor will send an invoice to email, which will be picked up by the bot automatically. Then, it will extract the information from the invoices and post it to our SAP.

It is a web-based solution but hosted on our server.

How has it helped my organization?

The biggest driver was the cost savings. We wanted to improve productivity and save costs. Therefore, we gave most of the mundane tasks currently being done by a human to a bot. Some of the mundane tasks were reading invoices and keying in the data. We are talking about 15,000 documents every day. That is a huge volume that needs a lot of people. With the bot, it is just a fraction of the cost, because there is a huge savings in terms of manpower.

More for regulatory and audit purposes, we still require a human to approve it. Previously, we had the human to do it, then we had people cross-check it. Then, you have another layer of the approval. With the bot, we don't require two people. We only have the approval because we still have a person who does the approval, which we have to maintain. 

What is most valuable?

The most important part is how easy it is to pair the automation. So, it is a canvas that is just drag and drop. You don't have to code, so it is a no-code to low-code solution.

It is good for simple tasks that we have done in the past, e.g., reading the invoices. A valuable feature is the document processing. Usually when we talk about document processing in the market, you just have OCR. Where once you extract the information, you need to program or do some type of data wrangling to actually get the value of it or process it. For Jiffy.ai, they have the machine learning behind it, so we didn't need to code one by one. For example, if you have 5,000 vendors who are sending you different types of invoices, then we are not talking about 5,000 invoices. We are talking about one vendor who has three types of templates, so that is about 15,000 documents to process. Even if you do OCR, you want to extract the information and code it to read this and that. So, Jiffy.ai has machine learning where we don't have to teach all the documents, instead we just need to teach it a few. Then, the machine will already know if it finds this type of information, then that is what it is. For example, the easiest way is the invoice number. Most vendors usually have similar wording: invoice number, invoice NO, and INV. However, in all 15,000 documents, you see that the vendors just play around with this wording. It won't differ much. Therefore, the machine learning knows because of this, you don't need to teach it all 15,000 documents. After about 10 documents, the bot can pick it up themselves and learn about it.

There are not a lot of vendors in the market who provide built-in machine learning. In the invoice, you have multiple things that you want to extract: invoice number, PO, and some other line items. With machine learning, we expect it to know what to extract from, by looking at different templates of invoices. It should know that this is similar. Even though you use the different wording across multiple templates, the machine should know that it is an invoice number. We expect the machine learning should be able to do this, and the Jiffy.ai machine learning is able to do it with 80 to 90 percent accuracy. So far, we haven't had a big problem in whatever the machine learning reads, doing it correctly. If it didn't read correctly, we would have to correct it, then the bot will learn from that, "Okay, this is actually the better way," so it can do better next time.

What needs improvement?

They are still new in the market. Or, at least, they are still a small player. They require a lot of improvement in terms of learning material as well as the community developers. If you compare Jiffy.ai to an established solution, like UiPath, you can go to YouTube and find a lot of learning material posted by UiPath, partners, and other people in the community. However, for Jiffy.ai, you won't find that available in the market. Because of this it is very hard for us to find talent in the market. Most of the developers in the market are used to the bigger players. For Jiffy.ai, if you search a resume because you are trying to find someone who has used Jiffy.ai, you won't be able to find it. So, when we onboard a new person, we want them to learn this new system, but it is a bit hard for them to pick up because there are no external learning materials on the Internet.

For training, they provide the foundation and advanced training. If you have other issues, they have a support portal, which shows a brief summary of the features. It's not very extensive, like Google Cloud Platform. Sometimes there are things that may not be available in the portal. While other products will also not have available the information in their portal, other people know it. So, you don't have in the community discussions about solutions to a problem that would not be available in the portal. 

For how long have I used the solution?

We started this project last year in May.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

In terms of the portal’s stability, the system is quite stable. We almost never have downtime, and if so, it is very minimal. However, in terms of bot stability, it depends on the server. The bot sometimes gets stuck, then you have to restart the bot, which is something for them to improve.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I do not see any issues in terms of scalability. We can automate a process for a certain department and that process can be very similar to a process of another department. We might need to just change it a little, so we can use the existing solution that we have created. For example, if we create a reconciliation, then the same engine can be used for any big reconciliation tasks in other departments not related to finance. It could be done for engineering, operations, etc. It is very scalable in terms of reusing the existing solution.

How are customer service and technical support?

They are still quite a small player. Because of that, they can focus on the customer a lot more. If I am comparing them to a bigger player or other players that we have worked with in the past as well, they are a lot more responsive, passionate, and focused on us. They help the customer. 

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We can create almost any type of solution in a very inexpensive way. In the past, we bought software to do certain processes. However, with Jiffy.ai, we can build the same software at a fraction of the cost. We no longer had to buy this other vendor's software anymore, which we licensed every year. With Jiffy.ai, we just have to pay the setup costs in the beginning and have them do it for us. We wouldn't have to pay them if we are doing it by ourselves. If you just use their service and do the setup ourselves, then we don't have to pay for the service, we would just need to pay for the service to use the Jiffy.ai platform to build our software. So, in this example, we are actually saving 97 percent of the costs.

How was the initial setup?

The deployment process is quite fast. Because they are small, they could focus on us. With the development, there are not a lot of processes to do it. We just have to set up the server. We can use their cloud, as cloud hosting or hosted in our on-premises. Even if it is hosted on-premises, the setup is quite fast. Training our staff was also quite fast. I didn't have any issues. I was quite happy with the setup.

The initial setup could take about a month or less, but we also had the incremental setup for our sister company. So, we have multiple entities in our company. The first time that we set up, we set up from scratch so there were a lot of other things that we needed to set up, but setting up another tenant for our sister company took a few days.

What was our ROI?

The reduction of work on a manually basis by project is between 50 to 90 percent. There are some processes where we almost automate the whole thing, and we just need manual handling by a person in certain rare situations. In that case, the reduction could be 90 to 99 percent. However, for certain processes, we can only automate 30 to 50 percent because the rest of the process still needs to be done by a human because of regulatory purposes, etc. So, it's a huge range: 30 percent to 99 percent.

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

The pricing is quite competitive. As a small player in the market, they are quite aggressive in their pricing. With the features that they offer, it is quite worth the value.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Before we chose Jiffy.ai, we looked into other solutions, especially bigger, more established solution providers, like UiPath, Blue Prism, and Automation Anywhere. In terms of simplicity of usage, Jiffy.ai is easier to use since they are on a webpage. We put a portal on it and everything is available there. The UI is a bit more user-friendly and intuitive. 

In terms of trying to do end-to-end process automation and how easy it is to do it, these are big pros and cons when compared to UiPath. In some ways, they are easier, and in some ways, they are not. I like with Jiffy.ai that we can use Python, but with UiPath, we can't use Python and need to use .NET. I'm unsure if they have enabled Python now. We also have a lot more flexibility with Jiffy.ai, e.g., we can connect to Google or any kind of system without having to do integration. We can just go from the front-end and record it. UiPath has this as well. You need to install Orchestrator on your PC. Then, you can install the design anywhere, because it is web-based, which is an advantage.

In other solutions, you have to install and set it up. If I have a new developer come in, then I have to install the system on their laptop before they are able to do their work. With Jiffy.ai, you can do it anywhere, on any laptop, as long as the laptop has access to the webpage. You just need access to the webpage, then you are able to do it. We control it from the portal as well. So, if I want to shut down or restart the bot, then I just have to go to the portal. I don't have to go to somewhere else, log into the server, or remote desktop to several laptops to do it. Everything is centralized on one laptop in one portal: the user access, the bot management, the task management, and the user interface for the human to manually handle certain stuff. Everything is on one page. This is an advantage over other solutions.

What other advice do I have?

You have to be open to trying new things. There are certain things that if you are already used to other bigger players in the market, then there are things that you like and things that you don't like. However, even the things that you don't like, it is mostly because you are already used to the way the service player is doing it. Therefore, if someone is doing it differently, it could be actually better, though it may not feel like it. I think you will find it exceeds your expectations.

Even with using humans, we have multiple redundancies to ensure there are no errors. The end results are not a lot of errors, though using the bot reduces the redundancy in having people check each other's work.

We are still reducing the full-time employees doing the work, but not up to 100 percent. We still need to maintain certain people for handling tasks that can't be handled by the bot, like manual exception and manual handling. Therefore, we cannot 100 percent automate everything. There are certain scenarios that require human judgment, preventing us from using the bot to do them.

I would rate this solution as an eight (out of 10).

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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MA
Smart Automation & RPA Tech Lead at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
Real User
Great automation capabilities, good drag and drop functionality, and easy to use

Pros and Cons

  • "The solution is pretty customizable. Even big automation tasks are done rather simply."
  • "While Microsoft has a way of integrating well with itself and its own internal tools, it could do more to include external options and add them to the mix."

What is most valuable?

The solution seems to have a good drag and drop functionality. 

It's very well automated.

The solution is pretty customizable. Even big automation tasks are done rather simply. If you want to do more, we've found that anybody can do it. Even a business user that has no knowledge of IT can jump on and figure it out.

Two or three years ago, in all IT products, there were a lot of standards that were missing. Now, using the cloud and using some EA tools, there is a huge scope of possibilities. It's much better.

What needs improvement?

The biggest problem right now is the fact that, when you use only the trial version, you don't have the whole power or capacity of what you can do with the Power Automate. 

The price of the license isn't that cheap. We want to see what it can do, fully, before purchasing. 

If you get a license, you can only have one developer or one user on it.

If you want to be more precise and the jobs to be more complete, it's somewhat complicated and there are some complex tasks that can't be done so easily by a business user. You'll need to get someone that's more highly skilled.

You need to pay for the ability to customize the solution. That's not an option on the free trial. You also have to be able to read some code in order to customize it. You need to be slightly skilled. You can only customize it on your own, only for you, and not for the other users.

When it comes to using UiPath or Blue Prism, there are more tools you can use. For example, Java or tools. It's easy to interact with them with UiPath and not so much on Power Automate. While Microsoft has a way of integrating well with itself and its own internal tools, it could do more to include external options and add them to the mix.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for one to two months. It's pretty new for us.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's largely stable. When Microsoft updates, it tends to update everything at once. Your Excel, Work, Power Automate, etc., everything updates automatically. That makes everything align so that nothing is out-of-date and affecting the stability of everything else at any time. In general, stability seems to be absolutely fine.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

If it's on the cloud, it's generally easy to scale. The volume of data is viable. However, we haven't really attempted to scale anything. I haven't put everything onto Power Automate at this time.

How are customer service and technical support?

I haven't really reached out to technical support yet. I don't have experience with them, so I can't gauge if they are better than other options.

From my experience, for example, UiPath technical support was not that good. I've used Automation Everywhere and I didn't find them to be very good either. Each time we have a problem with Automation Anywhere, they wouldn't give any explanation. They would always blame the issue on a problem with Microsoft and never with their own problems. Therefore, historically, we haven't had a good run with support at other companies. I'm not sure if this will be the case with Microsoft.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We've looked at and worked with UiPath, Blue Prism, and Automation Anywhere. We're doing comparison POCs with UiPath and Power Automate now. We're not likely to just choose one solution; we may end up using two. We'd like to have options to choose a few depending on the needs.

How was the initial setup?

The initial implementation is not that difficult. It's on the cloud, so there's nothing to install. It's not exactly user friendly, however. UiPath is much more user friendly if you compare it to Power Automate.

In any case, you just connect it with your Microsoft login. If you want to automate a task, it's easy as everything is connected due to the Mircosoft account. It's easy to set up and concentrate your automation tasks.

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

Since we are on the trial version, we haven't bought it yet, or paid for anything.

If you are a small company, you can have a Power Automate license for as low as $30/month if you want to run one bot per month. It's pretty inexpensive.

With solutions like Blue Prism or UiPath, you need to think in one or five-year terms and many small companies can't just throw down $10,000 upfront.

What other advice do I have?

We're a Microsoft customer. We don't have a business relationship with the company.

We're using the trial version of the cloud deployment model. We haven't paid for it yet as they have to do a benchmark within or the solution for some POCs on UiPath and on Power Automate to see the differences. 

In a lot of companies, they use Microsoft products. It's easy to demonstrate how it's important to have a Power Automate type of solution on hand.

Overall, I'd rate the solution eight out of ten. Power Automate definitely offers the best automation scenarios due to the fact that it's a Microsoft product for Microsoft products. I tried automating something, for example, in SharePoint, using both UiPath and Power Automate, and Power Automate was the clear winner. It was just so easy and seamless.

It's also great from the perspective of a small company as there aren't high costs up front.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
reviewer1466877
Technology Test Lead at Infosys Technologies Ltd
Real User
Top 20
The intelligent OCR helps with accurate form field and text field data extraction from unstructured documents

Pros and Cons

  • "Bot Insights is neatly integrated into the platform, which enables us to develop rapidly and train the learning instances using pre-defined domains over the purchase orders, forms, and invoices that need to be processed."
  • "While exporting a package, an option to de-select all the depending/referenced files should be available. Currently, it only allows for selecting all the files. Also, the views should be re-sizable as they are currently a fixed width. This would enable to view long file names easily eliminating any chances of exporting the wrong file."

What is our primary use case?

We get many banking and finance use cases e.g. reconciliation, accounts payable, etc. from banking clients which involves the extraction of unstructured data from various scanned and true PDF documents. Post this, the data needs to be validated and triaged before feeding it into SAP and Java-based applications. 

The Automation Anywhere platform has always stood out from the rest of the solutions available on the market given we have IQ Bots and Bot Insights neatly integrated into the platform which enables us to develop rapidly and train the learning instances using pre-defined domains over the purchase orders, forms, invoices that need to be processed. Post extraction of the form and data fields from the documents we post them into SAP and Java-based applications. Automation Anywhere's ease of automation with these types of applications helps to deliver consistent and reliable automation in record time.

We are currently using AAE 11.3.5.1 Client with Control Room, IQBots, MetaBots, Bot Insights, and AA2019 capabilities.

How has it helped my organization?

Automation Anywhere has and continues to help us deliver multiple complex and very complex use cases in record time. With AA2019, this ease of development and rapid time to market has improved by a great margin as virtually no setups and configurations are required. Converting prospects into leads into opportunities has never been easier. AA2019 enables us to build POCs quickly without waiting for IT guys to install AAE client as no setups are needed to build BOTs. This enables us to give demos to clients at lighting speeds and gain client confidence in the capabilities and kind of automation we can execute as an Automation CoE.

What is most valuable?

1. IQ Bot: IQ Bot makes it a breeze to classify banking documents, purchase orders, and invoices. Also, intelligent OCR helps with accurate form field and text field data extraction from unstructured documents. The easy cloud training of the already existing domains and integration with task bots is the icing on the cake.

2. MetaBots - Metabots makes capturing and re-calibrating screen controls in (offline mode as well) really easy. This enables us to make changes to the UI Assets easy.

3. AA2019 helps us to rapidly try out POCs without going through the install cycle and setting up the control room. This is a very important and critical step given we can build automation rapidly and show to prospective clients helping foster confidence amongst the business enabling growth.

What needs improvement?

Points to Improve:

1. Control Room -> While exporting a package, an option to de-select all the depending/referenced files should be available. Currently, it only allows for selecting all the files. Also, the views should be re-sizable as they are currently fixed width. This would enable to view long file names easily eliminating any chances of exporting the wrong file.

Points to Add in next release(s):

1. Availability of actions for Date and time functions in task bots, meta bots logics editor like Date Addition, calendar functions, etc.

2. Addition of Assertions activities, that can help with conditional compilations

3. Option to copy multiple variables at the same time (as selected by the developer)

4. Option to close all the task bots files in the editor at a go

5. Option to check-out multiple files inside a folder structure in a go

6. List and array should be made dynamic, as in there must not be a requirement to specify at least 1 element in the list, etc.  

7. Deletion of multiple variables in one go (as selected by a developer)

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Automation Anywhere for over three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution has been becoming better with every release. We have been reporting bugs and supporting the developer teams to make Automation Anywhere more stable and better. With AAE version 11.x.x.x most of the feedbacks are incorporated and solutions are stable and performant.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability with Automation Anywhere has been great. BOT farms have helped rapidly and dynamically spawn up or down the BOT runners. 

How are customer service and technical support?

We always get a prompt response from customer service and technical support. I really find the priority technical support the depth at which they go to help us find a solution to issues is simply amazing. I have not experienced this with any other solution vendor. A big thumbs up to you guys. 

How was the initial setup?

Initial setup was a breeze and fairly straightforward with all the great support from Automation Anywhere customer service and various technical teams.

What about the implementation team?

We have used vendor teams and in-house teams to implement various solutions. Vendor team people have good knowledge of the various components of Automation Anywhere and know how to design effective, performant solutions in record time.

What was our ROI?

Post implementing AA, ROI numbers have grown exponentially. Given the scalability and dynamics that Automation Anywhere platform supports.

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

1. Setup cost is minimal as AAE Control Room is hosted in the cloud. Also, with AAE no dedicated setups need to be run and installed

2. Licensing cost is relatively less compared to other solutions on the market

3. Pricing stands out well compared to other solutions 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I have evaluated UiPath and Blue Prism.

What other advice do I have?

Automation Anywhere has been a significant step in our digital transformation. AA2019 addresses a lot of gaps that we previously had. This makes Automation Anywhere stands out in the market making it an obvious choice.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Private Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Microsoft Azure
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
FS
RPA Architect & RPA Product Owner at Francisco Sosa
Real User
Top 5
Affordable with good licensing and good stability

Pros and Cons

  • "The licensing of the product is very good. You only need to license it once and then you have it forever."
  • "The solution has a very weak knowledge base."

What is our primary use case?

We use the solution to automate some repetitive tasks which we execute in IT areas, such as backups, for instance. Also, we developed a systems support enterprise related to the transport industry that captures information that comes from electronic sources like Excel and other types of forms. In addition, we also make prototypes supporting the inbox and in the backend. The system looks for information that the user requests.

How has it helped my organization?

The OCR functionalities already embedded, and you can also use the command-line functionality such as those provided by Google, IBM, or others, even AWS

What is most valuable?

The licensing of the product is very good. You only need to license it once and then you have it forever. You don't need to keep paying for it like you would if you went with Blue Prism or a solution like that. It makes the product quite affordable.

What needs improvement?

In the case of health systems, particularly the OCR functionality is not available. You need to buy a separate license for OCR. 

Sometimes and the server loses contact with the agents installed in the equipment. That's something that I personally worry about due to the fact that, when the agent loses contact with the server, you stop receiving the locks of the receiver of the program.

The solution has a very weak knowledge base.

Much like Automation Anywhere, the product could offer virtual development via the web. AA has a web browser interface that allows users to deploy from the web using AWS. It's less reliant on on-premises technology.

The solution should have stronger password management. This should be centralized.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using this solution for about a year at this point.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of the solution is quite good. It doesn't crash or freeze. It's not buggy and doesn't seem to have glitches. We find the performance to be reliable so far.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is quite good, however, it can be a little bit expensive. If you want to expand, it will cost more.

While I'm not working with the organization that uses this solution anymore, at the time, about six months ago, there were about seven people on the product.

How are customer service and technical support?

While, in general, technical support was good, the knowledge base on offer was awful.

The online support, that kind of information you could find in the knowledge base is good. However, the shape of the knowledge base is actually awful due to the fact that you have systems that have many publishing systems. It makes it so that you have to dig around to look for the actual correct answer. 

They do have chatbots that do offer quick responses. That is hit and miss. Sometimes you get an answer right away, other times, nothing happens. The system might ask you to check back in later. It's not the best.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We did use other solutions, however, we appreciated that with this product we paid once and had it forever, whereas with others we had to keep paying. At the end of the year, you'd look and see you've tried a bunch of other options and have been charged again and again and those costs add up.

We've worked with UiPath and Blue Prism.

How was the initial setup?

The Initial setup was not complex in any way. It was pretty straightforward. We didn't really have any issues with it.

In terms of deployment, everything happened quite rapidly. You can basically download it and install it and then you can work with it immediately. Then, around 50 days later, this system will ask if you want to continue working with it. If you do, you can send just an email and it can be used permanently. It was very simple.

What about the implementation team?

We have a strong relationship with health systems in Mexico and had some health systems providers help us a bit with the implementation. 

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

The solution has a one time licensing cost that makes it very affordable.

Other options, like Blue prism, have an ongoing cost, which means the price begins to add up over time and ultimately costs more.

While solutions like UiPath and Blue Prism cost around $11,000-$12,000 for each license, this product costs around $7,000 and you can keep it forever.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked at about three or four other options, including something from Microsoft before deciding to go ahead with this option.

What other advice do I have?

We're currently using some version of release 8 or nine. I can't recall the exact version.

The company I worked for was a consulting firm.

I'd recommend the solution as it is it's a very good tool. If you want to try it, you can simply download it and use it contract-free for about a month. That can be expanded to maybe another 30 days if you really want to test the tool to see what it can do for you. It's very useful and easy to use.

I'd work to develop a relationship with the local representative as they can answer any questions a company might have and can give some really good advice as well.

Overall, I would rate the solution at a nine out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

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