RPA Vs IPA: What Is The Difference Between RPA and IPA?

Increasingly IPA is seen as a complement to robotic process automation, extending the scope of robotic process automation with AI technologies. It is essential to consider some of the most important distinctions between the two automaton technologies as a part of any organizations' technology roadmaps.

img August 08, 2022 | img 15 Min | img Robotic Process Automation

It is already learned that RPA is extremely effective as a point solution for enterprise users who need to automate repetitive tasks. Gartner's foundational report on RPA suggests that 'processes that are most suited for RPA have a high transaction throughput of structured digitized data, with relatively fixed processing paths and are rule-based activities which do not frequently change. 

The Need and Adoption of Robotic Process Automation 

The main traction of RPA platforms is, they are easy to use and do not require deep technical skills. RPA technologies can be implemented with low-code or no code. 

When underlined figures, it came out that a $1.5 billion market was registered by RPA in 2019 and is expected to reach 7.1 billion by 2025 at an impressive CAGR of 27.7%.

The type of human actions that RPA bots mimic is repetitive computer-based tasks that have defined inputs and outputs. RPA is often confused with AI stating that RPA qualifies as a form of AI technology. Despite the differences, the two technologies are often combined. Unlike the AI capabilities to learn, RPA does not have, and with sudden changes, it cannot match. RPA is designed to imitate and thus needs to fill in the instructions for changes. 

RPA does not require human intervention in things such as transfer data from customer emails and update systems with new services or product requests or address changes. RPA does not affect the existing systems instead, it allows the business users to overlay what is already in place.

However, RPA utilizes structured data for completing even complex tasks. With 80% of data of most of the organizations containing unstructured, which makes it extremely difficult to incorporate RPA tools. 

One of the next waves to look out for is the rise of intelligent process automation or IPA. The huge amount of unstructured data is the reason why organizations need to upgrade from RPA to an advanced Process Automation, which is IPA. 

Upgrading From RPA to Intelligent Process Automation (IPA)

IPA is the application of Artificial Intelligence and related new technologies, inclusive of computer vision, cognitive automation, and machine learning to robotic process automation. The intersection of these technologies produces automation capabilities that elevate business value and competitive advantages. The technology is capable of mimicking human interactions (like RPA) and making advanced decisions based on the outputs of those robotic inputs.

One of the most powerful features of IPA-enabled technology is its ability to continuously learn, iterate, and improve through user feedback. Let's understand in a better way -

Today, most organizations implement chatbots on their website to assist customers 24X7. However, the chatbot instigates RPA technology. But as you improve chatbot with IPA technology it can assist in a better way. Moreover, IPA ingrained chatbot initiates feedback mechanisms to understand the user experience and make improvements for better user experience in continuous chatbot iteration.

Key Differences Between RPA and IPA

Robotic Process Automation is the initial stage of technology to upgrade your work from manual to automatic. Whereas Intelligent Process Automation is an upgrade to RPA, as it can understand the context, learn, and iterate. Furthermore, unlike RPA, IPA can handle unstructured and structured data and support some level of informed decision-making. IPA also assists organizations to access and analyze unstructured data like images or text which is inaccessible by other means to gain important insights.  

The rising adoption of robots in different ways to assist in your daily life can be seen and we predict their continuous growth. RPA does make our mundane and tedious work, whether home or organization, easier and scale operations to provide more value to customers. On the other hand, IPA builds upon RPA, allowing the system to leverage to automate tasks and learn from them. 

What Factors Makes IPA Possible?

The augmented IPA from the conventional rule-based RPA is the innovation due to ML, deep learning, and cognitive technologies. The factors or the characteristics that give you a reason to upgrade from RPA to Intelligent Process Automation are -

Automatic Discovery of Processes

With technology like AI ingrained, bots can easily and quickly follow human behavior to identify and recommend the highest ROI processes to automate. Moreover, documentation of the business processes can be processed five times faster. 

Real-time Processing of Business Data

The overwhelming millions of documents within the business organizations are difficult to manage. Because of the valuable information, you need to keep track of all the documents. What's challenging is extracting and processing the information within the documents when needed, which humans spend hours on. Here, with the help of IDP (Intelligent Document Processing), organizations can quickly process the information and spend valuable time on crucial tasks.

Satisfying Customers

The ultimate goal for any organization is to provide a satisfactory service so that the customer returns to them. Since people today use different ways to connect with your organization, such as digital assistants (Siri or Google Assistant) and sometimes chatbots, your organization must be all-time ready to quickly respond. IPA, through natural language processing and sentiment analysis, bots can understand the context of the conversation and provide relevant responses or answers to the requests. 

In the Nutshell -

For the organizations that are new to automation, ingraining RPA first will be a better decision to make. Here an RPA service provider can help you instigate the technology. Once you've been introduced to the automation in one or more processes, you can switch to an augmented version of RPA, which is IPA. 

However, you can deploy RPA or IPA within weeks in your system, and deliver real value, as both interact with the presentation layer of your existing system and do not require any significant investment in infrastructure for both RPA or IPA.

IPA technologies are scalable and enable the business to easily accommodate growing demand and handle multiple customer interaction at the same time to provide faster and efficient solutions for absolute customer satisfaction.

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