IT automation has seen tremendous growth in the industrial sector in the past decade. It uses the instructions provided in creating repeating processes that reduce the manual work of the IT developers. Various software tools, appliances and frameworks conduct these process without any manual intervention. Organizations use different approaches for their automation process. Some rely on the traditional automation whereas some choose robotic process automation. As the competition in the market is increasing, organizations are opting for the robotic process automation to keep up with the competition.
A study by Forrester research suggests that robotic process automation (RPA) market will substantially reach from 250 million dollars to 2.9 billion dollars by the year 2021. This a substantial growth for the industry standards in terms of involvement with new developing technologies. Whereas, many major organizations are now focusing towards adopting RPA some organizations are still focused on the traditional automation practices.
There are many advantages of using robotic process automation. The most significant being its smooth implementation. The implementation of the traditional automation can take several months concerning the resources available to the organization. RPA does not require integration of applications. Instead, it uses the graphical user interface to perform its tasks across various systems.
Selecting an automation process depends on many factors as well as the needs of the organization. Below are some differences pointed out that can help the process developers in selection the automation processes they need.
- Primary functions:
Traditional Automation – Under traditional automation each tool serves a specific purpose. For example, enterprises primarily use selenium to automate their web-based applications. Apache JMeter helps in automating performance testing process.
RPA – Robotic process automation helps in automating any business functionality or process using the RPA software. RPA does not have dependability on the platform used as it is not a testing tool. Users can automate any application be it mobile, web, desktop, applications based on the mainframe and the applications running on virtual machines.
- User skills:
Traditional Automation – In traditional automation the user needs excellent programming skills to automate the functionalities of the process. The programming languages are different of each tool used thus burdening the user in remembering language syntax.
RPA – there is no requirement of exception programming skills of the user. RPA does not burden the users for remembering language syntax as the automation process is straightforward in it. The user needs to focus on the functionalities in automation.
- Knowledge of the process:
Traditional Automation – The domain knowledge of the functionalities is essential for the users. Separate testers are required to define the scenarios and write the test script.
RPA – The user must possess good knowledge of the process and domains. Unlike the traditional automation, RPA does not require separate testers for defining processes and scripting them.
Traditional Automation – There are limitations in understanding multiple programming languages which makes automation somewhat difficult. As human intervention is more the chances of errors also increase.
RPA – As there is limited human intervention chances of error get reduced. Understanding the programming languages and automation process becomes more straightforward in comparison to Traditional automation processes.
- Test design time:
Traditional Automation – Traditional automation testing requires an average amount of time. The process of studying and designing the test takes some time.
RPA – RPA requires less time as the software’s are process driven. In these, the users define the process in the form of flowcharts making it easier in implementation.
- Test execution time:
Traditional Automation – IT requires the use of multiple programming techniques for execution. An external physical machine with efficient programming capabilities for performing parallel execution is necessary.
RPA – In RPA the user assigns work to multiple virtual machines without any concern over which machine performs the provided task.
- Costing: The traditional automation process is cheaper in the initial phase. However, as traditional process requires human intervention, it costs a lot more in the long run. Whereas, in RPA the initial costing is high, but it saves a lot of time, money, and effort in the long run.
IT automation technology is growing rapidly. The robotic process automation the next generation solution to the IT problems. Some problems are clouding over the RPA, but with the development of new technologies, it will emerge as a revolution in the automation sector. Organizations opting for traditional automation must look for enhancing their business modules and objectives with the help of RPA.