Oct 21, 2021. By Anil Abraham Kuriakose
Many people believe that RPA & ITPA are the same. After all, they leverage software tools to automate processes to create efficiencies, lower the cost of operation, reduce error, improve accuracy, and increase quality. But RPA & ITPA are different because the way we use them is different, and the system's complexity varies. The RPA can automate a wide range of business processes and daily activities from the functional angle without using advanced programming techniques. On the other hand, the ITPA uses to automate very complex IT operations tasks. Apart from that, the ITPA needs to co-exist with legacy IT systems and most modern IT systems. Today, the ITPA tools are used to automate and monitor IT processes that manage resource dependencies across environments and silos. In addition, today's ITPA tools are designed to coordinate and orchestrate the delivery of IT services across multiple cross-domain components. The cross-domain perspective introduces a lot of complexity on top of the existing complex IT process.
Evolution of RPA and ITPA The Robotic process automation (RPA) tools are evolved from back-office screen-scraping technologies that were popular in the 1980s and '90s. Also, the Robotic Process Automation tools operate at a user-interface level to automate the business user activities. At the same time, the IT process automation (ITPA) tools are evolved from batch processing software from the 1960s. These tools evolved from Run Book Automation (RBA) to AI-based Cognitive Automation to manage the IT process automation.
Why RPA cannot meet many IT requirements RPA cannot meet the key requirements of ITPA use cases mainly because of the complexity of the use cases. The key requirements that are not easily possible with RPA are described below.
1) Support event-driven architecture that supports event-based automation to trigger automated IT operations processes. The events can be either business or IT events such as email, FTP file events, message queues, tweets, and more. 2) Virtualized and cloud environments require dynamic resource provisioning. However, implementing this type of dynamic provisioning requires a lot of optimization logic, and the current type of RPA tools may not support such capabilities. 3) Most of the IT systems provide a lot of complex and unstructured data. Automated analytics and observability of IT systems based on available data is not current RPA technology. It requires complex AI-based technology, and next-gen ITPA tools are evolving in this direction.
Implementation differences There are several differences between ITPA and RPA from the implementation angle: The ITPA focuses on improving the existing IT automation to the next level with quantifiable benefits. The ITPA must deliver robust capabilities to align with the requirements of complicated IT systems. IT process automation can get some advantages in back-end services automation instead of user interface level automation.
Hyper Automation - ITPA along with RPA and Machine Learning RPA can be used to enhance IT process automation. Here ITPA can use various machine learning techniques to analyze unstructured data and augment those analytics with RPA to improve the maturity of the organization's automation journey. When RPA plays an integral role in IT process automation, IT teams can be more effective in their automation and efficient in executing their tasks. This gives the IT organizations the ability to extract greater value from all other IT investments. The key benefits of this approach are (1) Accelerating the automation towards more complex IT Process Automation. Hyperautomation enables a complete and high-speed approach to engage everyone in the organization to accelerate the transformation of IT Process Automation. (2) It helps to deploy the digital workers - Enhancing ITPA with RPA with machine learning creates a more intelligent digital workforce or software robot that can take on repetitive tasks to augment IT employee performance. These digital workforces can connect with different business services, understand structured and unstructured datasets, do faster data analytics, and make better decisions.
ITPA is consistently evolving with artificial intelligence, and it helps IT organizations achieve a high degree of automation on repetitive high-volume tasks. And this will free up your IT staff to focus on things they do best and enjoy. To understand more about IT process automation using ITPA and AIOps, please visit our AIOps product page.