in RPA, Tools

A beginners guide to Uipath

UiPath is an easy to use RPA tool with a comparatively low learning curve. The tool is easily accessible to developers through a community edition. It is quite popular and has a fairly large community.

It is one of the tools that has many certified developers thanks to free certifications through their academy.  UiPath has a comparatively easy licensing model and is easy to procure as well.

UiPath is not the most robust tool though especially with respect to error handling, security etc. Also, their Customer support seems to be stretched thin due to their rapid growth and is probably catching up.

Features and Ranking

Development Environment UiPath is considered easy to use and train on. Gartner rating for their development environment is high.
Recorder   UiPath has five types of recording.  Gartner rates UiPath “low” on recording functionality.
Bot Operations Good support for Orchestration, Logging, and Exception Management. Can improve on Backups & DR, Updates & Upgrades and Monitoring.
Component Reuse You can build modular automation and reuse at the workflow level. Also can extend functionality via custom activities.
Security framework Good Encryption, Credential, and User management comparable to other tools.
Unstructured data/OCR Provides Google and Microsoft OCR engines with the Studio which is not the most reliable. Also can import other paid engines like ABBY which is better but still not 100%.
VDI / Citrix Dedicated support for virtual environments with Citrix modules and Computer vision activities pack.
AI/ML
You can invoke Google, IBM Watson, Stanford and Microsoft APIs with Cognitive activities pack.
Process Discovery Provides process mining through a partnership
Community Support UiPath an active forum, a popular community edition as well as structured tutorials all accessible through UiPath Go.

Top 3 advantages of choosing UiPath

  • Ease of Use: UiPath has an easy to use interface to configure workflows. There is an inbuilt recorder that generates a part of the configuration for you. Since it is easy to use out of the box, it enables faster deployments as well.
  • Quickstart: You can get started quickly by downloading the tool and learning with the help of UiPath Academy.  The tool is comparatively easy to learn, there are a lot of learning resources and a community to support as well.
  •  Poised for growth: UiPath has a strong and growing subscription base that has resulted in valuation hike and a rapid pace of funding. This augurs well for the growth of the tool especially the addition of Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities.

Top 3 challenges with UiPath you need to be aware of

  • Bot management: UiPath is behind in terms of adding Security features and overall robustness of the tool. They can do better in terms of enabling the management of reusable automation.
  • AI/Cognitive: UiPath has added Cognitive features in partnership with ABBY and Celonis but is comparatively behind tools like Automation Anywhere. These features will hopefully become stronger with strong funding.
  • Domain Expertise: UiPath is focussed on generic bots and lack industry-specific automation and offerings.

Licensing and approximate cost for UiPath

UiPath licenses multiple components separately. You can pick and choose what you need for your Automation needs. For eg. You can start off with Studio and Attended Bot and maybe add Unattended bots & Orchestration if needed.

UiPath Studio:

  • This is where you configure the workflows.
  • Around $3K per year.

Attended Robot

  • These augment humans and are triggered by people at computers.
  • About $1.2K per year

Unattended Robot

  • These are Robots that are triggered automatically and do not need human intervention.
  • Around $8K per year

Orchestrator:

  • This is an optional component that manages, controls and monitors UiPath Robots.
  • Around $20K per year.

These are the approximate costs as of November 2018. This pricing could be more complex and vary based on your agreement. For eg., There may be volume discounts.

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