Differences Between RPA and BPM - ByteScout

Differences Between RPA and BPM

Today all organizations are trying to achieve digital transformation, but the process is something that doesn’t happen overnight. With the help of the right tools, organizations can make significant changes and advancements to construct a digital workplace environment. Business Process Management (BPM) and Robotic Process Automation (RPA) are gaining popularity as tools for digital business development.

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  1. What is RPA?
  2. What is BPM
  3. RPA vs. BPM
  4. How to Choose the Right One?

As a part of digital transformation, BPM management has been a core strategy for organizations for years. RPA is gradually gaining momentum and popularity as a tool for organizational digitalization. Both tools provide productivity and efficiency in the functioning of a business. Here is an overview of the two devices, which will help you understand their purpose.

What is RPA?

RPA aims to reduce human action or intervention with the help of robots for the process of automating operations of your business. However, it doesn’t entirely substitute humans, and it makes their work more comfortable and more efficient. In turn, it saves time and energy that leads to a meaningful activity — achieved by performing a series of steps.

RPA helps in automating the monotonous and time-consuming processes of a business, like transaction processing, data manipulation, response activation, etc. This allows the business teams to focus more on other important tasks and make them more productive for the business.

RPA’s main objective is the automation of processes for making them work faster rather than using human labor for it. But RPA only works at the surface level so it does not optimize the underlying process.

What is BPM?

BPM business process management is an underlying process that focuses on business reengineering and streamlining. BPM software drives higher efficiency by improving your business. It analyzes different work scenarios, makes improvements, modifies, and monitors the overall process.

BPM delivers maximum efficiency and value for business processes. It helps to optimize the underlying processing, making changes and improvements throughout the process. BPM’s primary goal is to create a comprehensive approach towards business processes management. It provides end-to-end optimization for repetitive processes.



RPA is a technology, and BPM is more like a discipline rather than a technology. So, contrary to the popular misconception that says BPM and RPA are the same things, they are actually very different from each other. RPA is not designed to automate business processes fully, so it will be a mistake to think that RPA will replace the old system of BPM.

RPA is software-driven, and it focuses more on the task of providing a low-effort but fast solution. On the other hand, BPM is more comprehensive and focuses more on the process to provide a long-term solution but requires more effort.

RPA Tools

The automated service through various software that is vendor and tools to configure your tasks. The vendors that are on the rise are Automation Anywhere, Pega, WorkFusion, Blue Prism, UIPath, to name a few.

BPM Tools

BPM software tools will help you in improving your corporate performance. These tools offer a systematic management approach that will help in optimizing your business. BPM modeling tools advance business norms, workflow measures, implementations, and designing. It refines and streamlines processes that fundamentally involve human interactions, thus eliminating human errors and miscommunication. BPM platform provides a confluence between the corporate and IT departments.

There is a fundamental difference between RPA and BPM. Here are the key differences:

  • Technological

Technologically, RPA configures robots to finish time-consuming, tedious, and monotonous, which results in saving time. On the other hand, a BPM platform provides a service through which it can identify and streamline the process in your business. It efficiently prevents bottlenecks of data.

  • Primary Focus

RPA minimizes manual work that is repetitive and takes up run-based functions that require complex decision making. The BPM system reengineers the business process and modifies it as per requirements, improving productivity and efficiency.

  • Deployment effort

RPA tools require a low amount of effort by working seamlessly through the existing process and application of your organization. While BPM digital transformation concerns with organizational or business processes that are to be reshaped.

  • Business Impact

RPA implementation provides immediate and quick returns. However, we can, at times, fail to address the functional inefficiencies that are underlying in your company. BPM implementation offers a long-term and high level of returns. As a result, it will lead to higher levels of compliance, productivity, agility, cost reduction, and higher efficiency.

The ultimate goal of every business is to make up-gradation in its business processing through digital automation. RPA deals with minor repetitive tasks. RPA software tool can simplify the amount of manual exertion made by its users. RPA tools can further affect the scale transactions of your business effectively.

It is a small part of digital business automation. It can complement cloud-based BPM that backs a robust approach. RPA as a tool can mimic human work that is required to be error-free, specifically in the IT department. RPA cannot replace BPM as a tool. By the end of the day, the tool heightens productivity and efficiency.

Whereas, an intelligent BPM offers a holistic approach. It optimizes the business automation and digitalization process thoroughly. It provides a start to finish solution for the automation of your complete business processes. It can help your business become more adaptable to the constant changes that occur in the marketplace. It is built from a low-code business process tech. Hence, BPM digital transformation benefits all departments of a corporation. BPM as a tool equips users that from technical as well as non-technical backgrounds.

Organizations mostly prefer RPA when they have to deal with large volumes of data without making any changes in them. RPA does not provide any help in decision-making or reasoning tasks and can only automate one process at a time. BPM can fully automate the processes end-to-end by streamlining complete workflows while following a set of rules and optimizing the processes to make them more effective.

Besides providing an automation workflow, the BPM software tool can assist in making adjustments in the business and adapting accordingly. BPM is a workflow engine that conducts communication and routing, which is rules-based, with various databases. This further leads to BPM helping in the evaluation and analysis of the action that is required to be taken next in the process.

How to Choose the Right One?

When it comes to deciding the right technology your automation project needs, it is essential to understand what services and features RPA and BPM bring to the table. When you know about the two services and their functions, you can make decisions based on the requirements of your organization.

If your organization requires to automate processes that are recurring and stagnant with no need for any integration, then you can choose RPA. You can choose to use the BPM project management if you seek to automate processes that can be dominantly used manually with the added aid of third-party integration.

When it comes to working with a project that is complex and amalgamated, then utilizing both tools will be rational. However, to automate and digitalize the complete functioning of your business, you can typically opt to work with both BPM and RPA.

There is a probability that your organization may not have the required resources or the time to implement a thorough and integrated automated process to eliminate and minimize human effort. The combined implementation of this automation software and tools will derive higher value through its technological approach. It will further make the automation process for your company quick at a reasonable price.

Assuming RPA and BPA provide the same functions as a tool is a common, big misconception.

BMP is a discipline, and RPA is a technology both having the end goal as productivity and efficiency of a company. Though they are similar in what they aim, they are not the same thing when it comes to functionality and processing. BPM is more robust as compared to RPA as a tool. RPA has a system-to-system target, homogeneous. On the other hand, BPM document management offers a broader focal point.

In the coming future, the convergence of RPA and BPM software tools is anticipated. When it comes to the automation of your business, evaluate your vendors in a way that compliments the digital process automation requirement of your company. The need for these tools will probably be different from other sectors and organizations.

Looking into the initiatives of digital transformation, BPM software tools, and RPA software tools can be categorized differently. Although the two devices can be deployed separately, statistical usage of the RPA and BPM will take things to the next level of productivity. Implementation of both the tools together in a way that they complement each other can compound the individual functions and benefits they provide.

Automation has helped businesses to cut costs and invest them into more strategic activities. With the regular improvements of the RPA and workflow engines, the BPM experience has also got boosted. And, with their cloud expansion, even small organizations can adopt them in their workflow, paving the way for business growth.

They will make a duo that is powerful and can help many organizations in delivering the goal they desire from the process automation. In the coming years, with growing technology and business conversion, BPM will be recognized as a transformation toolkit for digitalization, with RPA pre incorporated in the system.