What is Robotic Process Automation (RPA)?

RPA is software technology that’s easy for anyone to use to automate digital tasks.

RPA is configurable software, set-up to execute business processes that you assign and control. RPA interacts with applications and systems the same way people do—except RPA operates around the clock, much faster, and with 100% accuracy. Simply define the tasks and rules for automation, and let RPA do the rest.

Robotic process automation (RPA)

The benefits of RPA.

Unlock the transformative power of RPA—a fast and effective way to streamline workflows and automate repetitive tasks.

Increase productivity

Increase productivity
Speed up and streamline workflows with greater reliability and precision.

Save money

Save money
Boost efficiency across the organization, reducing costs and providing quick ROI.

Integrate seamlessly

Integrate seamlessly
Eliminate technology silos and achieve enterprise-wide efficiencies and collaboration.

Boost employee morale

Boost employee morale
Free up employees to focus on rewarding, fulfilling, and valuable work.

Improve adaptability

Improve adaptability
Scale with complete adherence to security and compliance requirements.

How does enterprise RPA work?

Robotic process automation is software that gets work done using the same digital skillset as people—and then some. Think of RPA as a digital workforce that can interact with any system or application to perform repetitive digital tasks—things like copy-pasting, scraping web data, making calculations, opening and moving files, parsing emails, logging into programs, and connecting to APIs. Despite its extensive capabilities, setting up automations is surprisingly simple and user-friendly, akin to recording and sharing a video on your smartphone.

While just as straightforward and intuitive to use, enterprise-level RPA is also designed for the security, systems integration, scale, and compliance requirements of large organizations. Robust and resilient, enterprise RPA is capable of orchestrating thousands of automations at the same time while ensuring high availability and performance across enterprise operations. Enterprise RPA is part of the end-to-end Intelligent Automation strategy necessary for organizations to automate effectively.

Rule-based and adaptive

Rule-based and adaptive

Enterprise RPA not only follows pre-defined rules but also learns from data patterns to swiftly adapt to new information.

High-fidelity at high-volume

High-fidelity at high-volume

Enterprise RPA delivers consistent, compliant performance for repetitive yet business-critical operations involving thousands of automations.

Process integration

Defined data input/output

While RPA on it’s own is limited to structured data, enterprise RPA seamlessly integrates with AI tools that harness unstructured data.

What to look for in an enterprise RPA solution.

Building or managing an enterprise-wide automation program? The reality is that RPA is not a stand-alone solution. RPA technology that’s designed for the scope and scale of complex, interactive business processes and connected global operations is part of an Intelligent Automation platform. For automations that work effectively alongside human teams, seamlessly and securely integrate with enterprise systems, and handle heavy workloads, look for RPA technology that’s part of an end-to-end AI-powered automation solution.


Planning for growth and change requires scalability for process volume as well as user base. Enterprise RPA can dynamically scale up to accommodate business growth and the workload demands associated with large organizations’ high volume of repetitive tasks without compromising performance. An extensible SaaS platform can also smoothly scale out and across departments and teams with easy-to-add licenses for everyone from citizen developers to digital assistants.


Low-code and no-code RPA refer to the ability for non-technical users to easily create automations without coding knowledge. Not only does low-code/no-code development make it faster and easier to automate, for larger organizations with multiple departments and teams, it allows for a wider range of employees to contribute to automation efforts. This so-called citizen development is foundational to enterprise-wide Intelligent Automation and digital transformation.

Interoperability and integration

Ease of integration is crucial in an enterprise environment where countless systems and applications need to work together. Enterprise RPA offers seamless interoperability with both legacy systems and new applications. An effective enterprise RPA solution will also seamlessly integrate via native connectors with tools and technologies, such as AI models and APIs, enabling organizations to automate a wide range of tasks requiring communication with and data access from multiple sources.


Orchestration is another essential feature of enterprise RPA. It’s what allows for the management and coordination of multiple automations simultaneously. This is especially important for large organizations that may have hundreds of processes running concurrently.

Audit and governance

An enterprise RPA solution comes equipped with built-in audit trails and reporting features to provide a clear and traceable record of every automation action and interaction, ensuring transparency and compliance. For operational simplicity and improved monitoring, look for credential management that includes native secure credential storage and compatibility with privileged access management platforms like CyberArk, AWS, and Azure key vaults.

Governance capabilities play a crucial role in controlling automation efforts within an organization. An effective enterprise RPA platform offers features like permission controls and version control. This ensures that only authorized personnel have access to and can make modifications to automations, maintaining strict governance standards.


Security is a top priority for any enterprise organization, and an effective RPA solution should have robust security measures in place to maintain consistent security posture across automations. This includes defense-in-depth secure cloud operations, identity and access management (IAM), data encryption, logging and monitoring, cloud infrastructure security, application security, incident response, and the ability to comply with industry-specific regulations. Look for security certifications such as ISO27001 and SOC 1 & 2 Type 2.


Cloud compatibility is a crucial aspect for organizations looking to scale their automation efforts. A cloud-based enterprise RPA solution allows for increased flexibility, accessibility, and scalability. Cloud-native architecture minimizes costs across infrastructure, maintenance, security, and compliance. There’s no guessing what infrastructure you need, automatic sizing and ongoing capacity monitoring, continuous enhancements pushed automatically to all users. High availability/disaster recovery is included.

Data privacy and compliance

Compliance adherence is essential for organizations operating in highly regulated industries. An effective enterprise RPA platform should have the ability to comply with industry-specific regulations, ensuring that all automated tasks are in line with legal and ethical standards. Look for cloud-native RPA adhering to GDPR and data privacy principles, encryption of sensitive information, and essentials-only cloud storage. Certifications to trust: SOC 1 Type 2, SOC 2 Type 2, ISO 27001, HITRUST, and ISO 22301.

RPA use cases by industry.

Robotic process automation offers benefits for key stakeholders across industries.

  • Financial Services
  • Healthcare
  • Manufacturing
  • Life Sciences
Financial Services

By removing human error, RPA can strengthen security and compliance to mitigate financial risks.


Automate manual tasks to offer enhanced patient experience, robust security, and guaranteed compliance.


Reduce costs and speed up time-to-market with improved productivity on the factory floor and back-office.

Life Sciences

Boost productivity while removing the risk of human error to accelerate pharmacovigilance and complaint handling.

The Evolution of RPA.

Robotic process automation has come a long way in a short time.

  • Automating repetitive tasks
  • Democratizing automation
  • Introducing AI
  • Expanding use cases
Automating repetitive tasks

Robotic Process Automation has become a must-have for modern enterprises. RPA as we know it was first used to revolutionize document processing. By fully automating repetitive, high-volume tasks like data entry, scraping, and extraction, RPA broke down a myriad of productivity barriers.

Democratizing automation

Low-code RPA software was also easy for employees to use, meaning it became a crucial tool in democratizing automation. It empowered everyone in the business to get involved, so that every department could make use of RPA benefits to drive their own digital transformation.

Introducing AI

Now, a new era of RPA plus artificial intelligence (AI) is hereis here. Intelligent Automation combines RPA with cognitive technologies, such as machine learning, natural language processing, computer vision, fuzzy logic—and, most recently, generative AI.

Expanding use cases

The combination of AI technologies with RPA has broadened the range of automation opportunities. This development enables the full automation of complex business processes and diverse workflows, allowing organizations to implement adaptable and end-to-end enterprise-wide automation.

Get started on your RPA Journey.

RPA is an automation tool for everyone—here’s how to kickstart your automation journey, drive organization-wide transformation, and future-proof your automation strategy.

  • 1 Readiness

  • 2 Vendor

  • 3 Engagement

  • 4 Expansion

1 Outline your digital transformation vision.

Right from the start, identify automation solutions that align with your business objectives and wider vision. Ask lots of questions—both internally and externally. Reach out to trusted partners, vendors, and other organizations already on their RPA journeys. Putting people at the center of your plans is crucial for success. Bring in HR early and involve a broad cross-section of stakeholders, change agents, and RPA champions.

2 Evaluate and select your best-fit solution and support model.

The golden rule? Think long-term. That means choosing an RPA solution that’s apart of a more robust and comprehensive suite of products, like an Intelligent Automation platform. Find a vendor that can demonstrate experience and stability, and is invested in continuing to adapt and innovate. Importantly, automation will only be successful if employees are empowered to self-serve. That means you’ll need to choose a tool that’s technically powerful as well as accessible for business users, not just IT specialists.

3 Establish a center for RPA standards and oversight.

Expanding RPA for end-to-end business process automation relies on widespread RPA adoption. Start strong by creating an organization-wide center of excellence (CoE). The CoE should focus on effectiveness and governance, will be in charge of creating standards, and must propagate best practices, tools, and templates. It’s a hub of RPA expertise, established to help the entire organization get up and running with their own automations.

4 Step beyond RPA into Intelligent Automation.

Digital transformation is a journey, not a destination. RPA sets the foundation for a long-term value-adding approach to innovation. It’s important to build this into your plans for RPA at all stages. Automation Anywhere helps businesses get started with RPA with Intelligent Automation in mind. This way you can move beyond automating steps in workflows and onto the next stage of transformation effortlessly.

The Automation Success Platform.

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Frequently asked questions.

How does RPA work?

Think of RPA as a digital workforce that can interact with any system or application. RPA automations are able to copy-paste, scrape web data, make calculations, open and move files, parse emails, log into programs, connect to APIs, and extract structured data.

What is RPA and how can it boost business efficiency?

RPA, or robotic process automation, uses software “robots” to automate high-volume repetitive tasks, freeing up human workers for more valuable work and strategic decision making. It also boosts business efficiency by removing human error and speeding up workflows.

Why are companies adopting RPA technology?

Companies adopt RPA automation tools to streamline operations, enhance accuracy, reduce costs, and improve customer service. It’s a fast, inexpensive way to achieve end-to-end business process automation. RPA also frees up human workers to do what they do best—solving problems, conducting analysis, and other highly valuable work.

What processes can be automated with RPA?

RPA can automate a wide range of tasks, such as data entry, invoice processing, customer service responses, report generation, and even email management. In particular, it excels at executing manual and repetitive tasks (e.g. billing, coding invoices, and sending reminders).

Is RPA secure for my business?

Yes, RPA tools follow strict security protocols. Businesses can enjoy the benefits of RPA without impacting security. In fact, RPA can be used to strengthen IT security, by deploying automations to secure sensitive data and removing risks caused by human error.

What's the cost of implementing RPA?

The cost of RPA varies based on the complexity of tasks, number of automations, and chosen RPA platform. However, its ROI is often realized quickly due to efficiency gains.

How can you scale RPA across an organization?

To make RPA truly scalable, automation needs to become embedded in your work culture and organization’s DNA. Create a center of excellence (CoE) dedicated to supporting and championing RPA. When it comes to ensuring sustained success and maximizing the impact of automation initiative, it will make all the difference.

Do users need to know how to code to use RPA?

No, RPA does not require coding skills. Automation Anywhere offers automation technology that is always intuitive and user friendly, so that all employees can use them. If you know how to record video on your phone, you’ll be able to configure RPA automations. It's as simple as that.

Is RPA the same as Intelligent Automation?

No, RPA is not the same as Intelligent Automation, though the terms are often used interchangeably in the industry. Think of RPA as the essential building block within wider, dynamic architecture of Intelligent Automation. RPA focuses on automating rule-based, repetitive tasks by mimicking human interactions with digital systems. It’s incredibly effective at increasing efficiency and reducing errors in well-defined processes. Intelligent Automation, however, extends beyond these capabilities by integrating advanced technologies, in particular artificial intelligence (AI) tools, to not only automate tasks but also optimize entire workflows, make data-driven decisions, and turn routine operations into flexible and strategic assets that drive growth and innovation.

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