RPA, as we explain in detail, is possibly the most flexible automation platform and as a result, rolling out RPA solutions require significant programming and customizations. Since RPA companies can not possibly build a solution for every process or task that will be automated, they rely on vendors to provide customized solutions. These solutions are provided in marketplaces built by leading RPA companies:Comprehensive list of RPA marketplaces. Disclaimer: The number of apps is not an apple-to-apple comparison as companies list applications at different levels of granularity (from snippets to full processes) in their marketplaces
|RPA marketplace||Launched on||Number of apps as of 18/Dec/2018||Developer categorization||Ratings||Reviews|
|Argos Labs||To be launched on mid 2019|
|UiPath||10/2018||207||Available (6 categories provided from UiPath to community contributor)||Available||Available|
RPA marketplace owners are still developing a lot of the typical marketplace functionality such as:
- Developer categorization: By categorizing apps developed by RPA companies themselves, those developed by certified solution providers and those developed by 3rd party developers, RPA marketplaces give users a quick but crude assessment of the developer
- Ratings: For most categories of RPA apps (e.g. OCR), there are multiple solutions to choose from and ratings help users rank solutions.
- Reviews: It’s far easier to improve products with feedback. Users leaving public comments to apps helps apps improve their functionality
What are the apps offered in RPA marketplaces?
We can classify apps in these categories:
Since most companies’ basic processes such as invoice to payment are similar on a high level, pre-programmed process software with detailed documentation help simplify development and reduce the need for customization. These are generally structured by industry (e.g. retail), business function (e.g. marketing) or purpose (e.g. collaboration).
These are called “Solution” in UiPath Go Marketplace and “Process bots” in Automation Anywhere Bot Store.
Though RPA companies provide a significant number of integrators to different on-premise/cloud software, it’s not feasible to wait for them to build all possible connections. Especially emerging companies could build their own integrations to use these marketplaces as part of their go to market strategy.
These are called “connector” in UiPath Go Marketplace and “application bots” in Automation Anywhere Bot Store.
Cognitive/machine learning solutions
Even simple processes like invoice to payment require machine learning solutions as invoices come in many different formats. These solutions provide the cognitive functions which are easy to define but hard to implement.
Invoice data extraction is a good example. There are actually only a few companies that solve this problemend-to-end, (i.e. taking the invoice image and extracting the necessary fields such as product name, bank account, payment account and so on with high accuracy).
These are called “Machine Learning Models” in UiPath Go Marketplace and “cognitive bots” in Automation Anywhere Bot Store. “Visual perception skills” in Blue Prism Digital Exchange provide cognitive solutions focused on visual perception.
Some major marketplace participants are listed below:
|Developer||Solutions||Automation Anywhere Bot Store||Blue Prism Digital Exchange||UiPath Go||Comments|
|Omni:us||Handwriting data capture||Available|
|ABBYY||Image data capture||Available||Available||Available|
|Adobe||Image data capture||Available|
|Rossum||Invoice data capture||Available|
|Hypathos||Invoice data capture||Available|
|Various cognitive functions||Available||Available||Available||3rd party developers use company's APIs to build RPA apps|
|IBM||Various cognitive functions||Available||Available||Available||3rd party developers use company's APIs to build RPA apps|
|Microsoft||Various cognitive functions||Available||Available||Available||3rd party developers use company's APIs to build RPA apps|
Hope you enjoyed this overview of RPA marketplaces. Feel free to read more on RPA or get in touch with us with your RPA related questions: