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Business Process Automation vs Robotic Process Automation

When you compare BPA Vs RPA, which one is the better automation solution for your business? What are the merits of business process automation vs. robotic process automation? Business Process Automation (BPA) is a solution that uses a holistic approach when automating business operations. 

Instead of focusing on individual automatable tasks, a BPA solution focuses on automating and improving the entire business’s operations. The aim of a BPA solution is to streamline and increase efficiency in all business processes.

Check BPA vs RPA comparison in one video presentation:

  1. Business Process Automation Vs Robotic Process Automation
  2. RPA Business Process
  3. BPA Business Process
  4. RPA Business Model
  5. BPA Business Model
  6. Why Is RPA in Business More Popular
  7. RPA vs BPA

With Robotic Process Automation (RPA), the goal is to automate specific processes and free the human labor involved. In that regard, there are many factors to look at when weighing RPA vs BPA as a business automation solution.

Can either of the two, be a substitute for the other? No, they are not substitutes. Often, when RPA is not used as a standalone solution, it ends up being part of BPA. Read on to find out how the two solutions can improve your business’s profitability.

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Business Process Automation Vs Robotic Process Automation

Here is a simple and clear summary of the functions of each solution to give you a clear picture of what they are.

RPA Business Process

BPA Business Process

  • A holistic approach to improving business efficiency.
  • It automates processes in the whole organization.
  • BPA requires a deep analysis of the business’s operations.
  • The BPA solution is built from the ground up.

RPA Business Model

One important feature that differentiates RPA from BPA is that it automates and performs low-level tasks, thereby replacing manual labor. However, RPA does not have a physical presence. The RPA software mimics the actions of humans when executing tasks through graphical interfaces.

Example of RPA Use Case

A good example of the RPA use case is in a cold-pitching emailing application. The RPA bot ‘crawl” web pages looking for emails and names of potential clients, and creates a list of the emails with their corresponding names.

It then uses that information to send them emails generated from templates. Such a repetitive process can take humans tens of hours to achieve. An RPA, on the other hand, can generate that information, and send lots of email within minutes.

The value of sending each email is quite low, however, the cost of using a robot to do it, makes lots of economic sense. Apart from the initial investment, the cost of sending such cold pitches is comparable to that of keeping your PCs switched ON!

Automation Growth

Research shows that by 2025, the use of RPA software worldwide may provide as much output as 140 million full-time workers. The total cost savings will be upward of $5 to $7 trillion. Such huge savings led Bill Gates to make a controversial remark about automation.

He suggested that there should be a robot tax, to compensate workers for wages lost through automation, in order to stem poverty levels. The suggestion is a clear indication of the recognition RPA is getting from the world’s business leaders.

Unlike BPA, to implement RPA, you only need to understand the rules followed when executing the manual task that you want to automate.

BPA Business Model

The goal of Business Process Automation is to optimize the entire company’s operations through automation. To do that, it automates repetitive workflows to increase productivity and eliminate losses. The simplest way to differentiate BPA from RPA is to think of BPA as an end-to-end automation solution.

A Holistic Approach to Automation

The focus is never on a single process or even a department. Instead, the whole organization’s business process and interactions are analyzed, and an automation plan created. While we cannot automate the entire business, any automatable process must be included in the BPA automation model.

Information and Data Mining

To kick-off the BPA process, we undertake an in-depth audit of all the company’s business processes to identify inefficiencies and points of weakness. The findings from the audit help to earth the problems the business is facing. That makes it possible to create a BPA solution from scratch, which can address all the company’s problems.

During the audit, the inputs of workers, managers, and other stakeholders are taken into account. That helps to create a BPA solution that unifies all the business processes. In BPA, it is important to avoid creating automated process blocks that have data, information, or communication gaps.

Every automated process needs to connect to the next one, in order to have an automated workflow. That eliminates the need for human intervention and any bottlenecks that would have come about, because of that intervention.

Why Is RPA in Business More Popular?

RPA has gained more popularity in business automation when compared to BPA. The popularity has nothing to do with one being more important than the other. Instead, the ease of implementation of RPA is the driving force behind that popularity.

While both RPA and BPA have the same goal of introducing greater efficiency in business, RPA offers a simpler approach to achieve that goal. On the other hand, BPA offers a more complete and holistic approach to achieve the same goal.

The key here is not to see them as competing solutions, but as solutions that can complete each other. Therefore, the two can work in tandem, to achieve your business’s automation goals progressively. What is important is to have a proper understanding of what each of them can do for your business.


Does your business have many processes that need a lot of human input to coordinate? Do customers or suppliers experience delays due to the time spent in handling and sorting out paperwork? If your answer is yes in all those questions, then a BPA solution will help you to streamline your operations.

An RPA will not be ideal in this case because it cannot offer a holistic solution. It cannot connect and streamline all the productions and business processes.

On the other hand, if there are just a few manual processes in your company, then an RPA solution will be ideal. In businesses with one or two manual processes, automating them with an RPA solution will be a cost-effective and faster solution.

A few configurable software robots can make a whole lot of difference when it comes to small business automation. If you still have any doubts, contact us now.


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