What would you rather use to nail a photo of your baby (or a baby pet) to the wall? A pneumatic drill or a good old hammer?

This question doesn’t seem so absurd when you think that the right tool makes a huge difference in both home improvements and Robotic Process Automation. And just as there are numerous utensils in one’s DYI kit, many RPA tools serve various businesses, goals, and needs.

At Flobotics, we mainly use three RPA technologies: UiPath, Robocorp, and Python. How do they differ? What use cases do they excel at? Which one’s the drill, and which one’s the hammer? Let’s find out.

UiPath, Robocorp, Python: what are they?

UiPath — the RPA powerhouse

Founded in 2005, UiPath has become a household name in the automation industry. It is consistently named an RPA leader in the yearly Gartner RPA Magic Quadrant report and for plenty of good reasons.

UiPath boasts a full set of automation discovery, management, monitoring, and testing features packed in a user-friendly interface suited for non-technical users.

Python — simple and flexible

Python is an interpreted, open-source programming language known for its flexibility. Thanks to its accessibility and customizability, it’s become one of the most popular programming languages, with readily available libraries and modules for all purposes—including automation.

Another thing that makes Python so successful is its simplicity and applicability to repetitive tasks. Data operations, web scraping, processing spreadsheets, moving files, and similar tasks are all good candidates for Python RPA automation.

Robocorp — Python RPA for everyone

Robocorp is an automation platform that relies on Python-built bots. As a more developer-oriented solution, it promises users more control over their RPA deployment.

Robocorp combines the flexibility of open-source solutions with compactness by keeping all automation efforts on one platform. With Robocorp, Python developers can build RPA bots efficiently, and business users can handle them without coding skills.

UiPath, Python, Robocorp: how do they compare?

As you can see, all three solutions are either made with RPA in mind or can be applied to automation. What makes them different? That’s where we go back to our intro: the difference lies in which one is a drill and which is a hammer.

UiPath, Robocorp, Python: RPA features and capabilities

The primary consideration when choosing RPA tools is what they are capable of. What are the standout features of UiPath, Python, and Robocorp?

UiPath features

As a leading RPA platform, UiPath has much to offer regarding features, which fall into three categories:

  • Discover (identifying automation opportunities),
  • Automate (RPA development and implementation),
  • and Operate (analytics, management, and monitoring).

These categories encompass a broad selection of automation-related tools such as task mining and process mining, AI-based features like intelligent document processing or GPT functionalities, and ROI and KPI analytics and visualization.

To help all these functionalities connect seamlessly to the rest of your applications, UiPath has over 1400 integrations with all sorts of software, such as Google Cloud or Microsoft apps, all available on UiPath Marketplace.

UiPath is well suited not only for automating modern software but also for legacy platforms. It offers many ways to integrate with older apps, including computer vision, and useful tools such as application mapping.

Thanks to that and all out-of-the-box features, UiPath allows you to automate virtually any process in all kinds of software.

Python features

  • On its own, Python is as barebone as an RPA tool can be, which is both good and bad. If you opt for Python, you’ll need a custom setup and development, including tools for post-deployment activities like analytics, monitoring, and management.
  • On a positive note, thanks to the many libraries and modules available, Python allows you to build automations that fit your needs like a glove…
  • … as long as you want to automate a newer, web-based app. Desktop apps and software that wasn’t designed with automation in mind can be more tricky, or even impossible to automate using Python.
  • As an interpreted, dynamically typed language, Python allows for rapid prototyping and iterating, letting developers quickly adapt the code to changing business conditions and remove bugs in automation.
  • Finally, Python is relatively easy to learn as far as programming languages go. It is less accessible to non-programmers than the other two tools but allows for faster adoption by users who already work with Python.

Robocorp features

  • Robocorp helps users automate desktop and browser applications by emulating human behavior. This is done thanks to several features enabling bots to interact with app interfaces such as OCR and integrations with popular business apps like SAP, Microsoft Office, NetSuite, AWS, and more.
  • Robocorp combines these features with the open-source nature of Python and all its benefits: customizability, agility, and a wealth of user-created resources.
  • However, Robocorp offers ready-made control, deployment, scaling, and development tools, unlike Python. Control Room is a central automation hub that grants you visibility into all automated workloads. Robocorp’s developer tools can be integrated with the most popular code editors, allowing developers to extend them with all Robocorp features and move complete RPA bots straight to the Control Room.
  • On top of that, security features like access control, bot accountability, and auditing ensure that all handled data is protected.
UiPath, Python, or Robocorp comparison

Talent base and resources

Ironically, you can’t implement and maintain automation without the right people. Thus, the availability of developers and training materials is just as important as the RPA platform’s technical capabilities.

UiPath developers and resources

While finding certified UiPath developers isn’t as easy as in the case of Python, UiPath is doing its best to train users on how to use the platform:

  • Automation adepts may enroll in one of the RPA courses in the UiPath Academy, while more experienced UiPath developers can find specific answers in the vast documentation library.
  • There’s also the bustling community forum, responsive customer support, events, webinars, and more.
  • It’s also worth mentioning that using automations daily is easy to learn thanks to the intuitive user-facing interface. Once set up, everyday use doesn’t require coding knowledge.

Python developers and resources

Python’s popularity gives it a big advantage over other tools regarding the developer pool. There’s no lack of devs with Python expertise, including specifically in automation. Thanks to that, you can be picky and target candidates with additional strengths, such as good soft skills or experience in your industry.

Robocorp developers and resources

Robocorp stands in the middle ground between UiPath and Python:

  • On the one hand, it tries to simplify operations for everyday users through an intuitive interface, certification courses, a community Slack channel, and extensive documentation.
  • On the other, it heavily relies on Python programming, and some coding experience is helpful even for simple automation.
  • Luckily, relying on Python also means that you have a vast talent pool to choose from. However, it’s worth hiring Robocorp developers with experience in RPA automation.

Pricing

Price is the final decisive factor—although, for many organizations, RPA cost may actually be the first thing to consider.

UiPath pricing

Most of the time, UiPath will be the most expensive tool of the three. The license is billed monthly, with Pro plans starting at $420 monthly and Enterprise plans priced individually. There’s also a free plan that offers limited, basic features.

It’s worth noting that lower operational costs partially mitigate the relatively high entry cost of UiPath. Since the platform has everything you need, no custom development is required to get it up and running.

To give you a better idea of the costs, a sample project that involves one runtime and allows to automate 10-15 processes would cost roughly $14,400 per year.

Python pricing

A free, open-source programming language, Python has no license price. The only cost is the developer’s salary.

Robocorp pricing

Similarly to UiPath, Robocorp offers monthly plans starting from a free educational plan, and going all the way up to a custom enterprise plan. Robocorp combines licenses with a pay-when-you-use model.

The final price depends on the total hours of automation execution per month. For instance, the yearly cost of a project with up to 25 execution hours per month will be $1200. The pricing rises significantly over that threshold, totaling $4800 yearly plus $3 for each extra hour.

Which one to choose?

Now that you better understand all three tools let’s see which ones fit specific automation projects.

UiPath — large-scale automation

All things considered, UiPath is an automation powerhouse—or a pneumatic drill, to continue with our analogy. The number of features, integrations, scalability, support, and educational resources justifies its relatively high cost. That’s why UiPath will deliver the best ROI in bigger automation projects.

  • The perfect use case would encompass automating multiple processes (e.g., 6 or more) within a department or even across the company that involves many business tools and applications, including legacy software.
  • UiPath’s built-in control functionalities, such as Orchestrator, Automation Suite, or Insights, facilitate managing and maintaining the deployed automations regardless of scale. Out of the three solutions, we believe that UiPath is the best for post-implementation automation management and monitoring.
  • Another advantage of UiPath for large organizations is its accessibility for the end user. With its intuitive drag-and-drop interface, low-code features, and wealth of instructional materials, non-technical employees can easily operate automated tasks, build their own automations, or even participate in monitoring and management processes.
  • Scalability and company size were two of the main reasons why we chose UiPath to help mortgage banker Paramount Residential Mortgage Group (PRMG) with loan process automation. As a result, PRMG saves 40 working hours per day and $2 million yearly.
  • Finally, larger deployments create more opportunities to use all advanced features fully. For smaller or less complex projects, sophisticated functionalities may be overkill and end up unused. In these cases, one of the other tools may be more suitable.

Python — small RPA deployments

Overall, Python is an extremely flexible tool—and one that you’ll have to assemble by yourself. It works best when you need it to automate one task and one task only so that you can take advantage of its customizability while nullifying its weaknesses.

  • Small, single-purpose deployments that won’t require you to build complex yet user-friendly monitoring and management systems. In larger RPA projects, these tasks are often partially relegated to non-technical staff, but with Python, business users would find them difficult without programming knowledge. However, if there are only a few processes to monitor, the job can be handled by a single developer.
  • It’s also important to consider app integrations. Although Python is flexible, the older the software you want to automate, the harder it will be to find the right integration libraries. Ensure your target applications are modern, web-based, or have APIs to facilitate communication with Python.
  • Due to potential development complexities, carefully selecting the most promising processes to automate is particularly important in the case of Python automation. For maximum gains, aim for very time-consuming processes (e.g., with a volume of over 100.000 transactions per month).

A good example is patient data transfer, and insurance claims automation we built for healthcare software provider SuperBill. With the use of Python-based RPA bots, SuperBill is now able to process 4000 patients each day.

Robocorp — mid-size projects

Robocorp stands somewhere in between UiPath and Python, both in the preferred scale and features. It’s a versatile tool perfectly suited for projects that involve multiple small- and mid-size automations.

  • Robocorp’s built-in development, monitoring, and management package is just fine for building and overseeing medium-scale RPA deployments. With them in place, developers can focus on actual automation rather than creating the necessary maintenance systems, allowing for a larger project scope when compared to raw Python RPA. Robocorp is also easier to use for non-developers than Python.
  • Accessibility was one of the main concerns for eSky, a travel tech company that reached out to us for aid with data update automation. Ease of use, quick prototyping, and versability were also why we opted for Robocorp and Python, helping eSky achieve a 100% ROI in just two months.
  • When used to automate simple tasks, Robocorp can be even faster than UiPath. It’s also very cost-efficient when the automation needs to faithfully replicate user behavior.
  • Still, Robocorp’s capabilities remain limited compared to larger RPA platforms. This is another reason you should stick with automating processes that aren’t excessively time-consuming (e.g., those with a total volume under 30.000 transactions per month).

UiPath, Robocorp, Python: the complete RPA toolbox

UiPath, Python, or Robocorp

As you can see, none of the three automation platforms is inherently bad; there are only wrong ways to use them. UiPath, Python, and Robocorp can hugely boost efficiency and reduce manual workloads depending on the context and your needs.

At Flobotics, we use the full RPA toolkit to address any business inefficiencies best. Not sure which platform is the best fit for your organization? Drop us a message, and we’ll help you choose and implement the RPA tool that will elevate your productivity.

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Krzysztof Szwed

Tech Lead and Solution Architect at Flobotics. Previously in KPMG.

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