What Distinguishes Workflow Automation From RPA?

Workflow Automation

Companies have recently adopted robotic process automation (RPA) and workflow software to improve efficiency. These two technologies aren’t competing with each other, but they can also be used together to create the ultimate customer experience. 

By understanding the differences between RPA and workflow automation, you can determine which product is best for your business and even combine them to maximize their potential.

What distinguishes workflow automation from RPA?

RPA is a subset of workflow automation. Workflow automation is a broader term that includes RPA, but it also encompasses other technologies that automate business processes.

Workflow automation has many different applications in business, such as

  • Automating manual data entry tasks
  • Processing documents and forms automatically
  • Managing customer service requests more efficiently

When should a company use RPA?

RPA is a good solution for companies with repetitive and predictable processes, such as those requiring human intervention. For example, if you want to automate a process in which your employees must fill out forms with data from one system and then export it into another system, RPA can help automate this task. 

Because RPA mimics human behavior, you can use it for tasks that require judgment or expertise (e.g., customer service representatives making calls).

When should a company consider workflow automation instead of RPA?

RPA is best suited for repetitive tasks that can be easily automated. Automating these tedious, manual processes will allow your employees to focus on more complex projects. However, workflow automation can handle much more than just simple processes; it can also help you with complex ones.

The future of workflow automation and RPA

There are many reasons to stay the course if you’re currently using workflow automation and/or RPA. According to a report from Forrester, by 2022, more than half of all enterprises will use both RPA and workflow automation and for a good reason. Neither technology is mutually exclusive; in fact, they complement each other quite well:

  • Combining these two technologies enables users to automate more complex processes that require more human input than an automated system could handle alone.
  • Because RPA is cheaper than it has been in past years, it can be used alongside existing systems without breaking the bank on new technology investment.

Workflow automation and RPA are not competing for technologies. By understanding the best use cases of each technology, businesses can utilize these important tools to improve processes.

RPA is a subset of workflow automation, but it’s important to note that these aren’t competing technologies. Both workflows and RPA can be used to automate processes. However, while an RPA solution can help automate repetitive tasks, this is only one way a business can use workflow automation to increase efficiency and productivity in their organization.

Workflow automation also has many other uses than just automating repetitive tasks; it allows companies to create flexible pathways for employees through their day-to-day activities by routing them through different systems based on rules set up by managers or other smart tools (like AI algorithms). 

In addition, workflow automation makes it easier for businesses to track all steps taken during the process, so everyone knows where things stand at any given moment in time, which is essential when trying out new ideas or making changes within an existing process!


RPA and Workflow Software are powerful tools that can help you improve your business processes. But it’s important to understand when each technology is most useful. Workflow automation is ideal for low-volume, repetitive processes requiring human workers’ judgment calls. RPA works well for larger, more complicated projects with multiple tasks or steps where human intervention isn’t required or desired.


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