What is RPA (And Why Your First Time Shouldn’t Scare You)

October 05, 2021

RPA is an acronym for Robotic Process Automation. What we noticed, however, is that sometimes this term does an ill service to the industry. SMB’s often ask themselves: “Are we truly ready for robots”? In actuality, these so-called robots shouldn’t scare anyone: RPA tools are suitable for different-sized organizations, and ‘robots’ in this case should be understood solely as a metaphor.

Basically, RPA is a technology that is used to automate processes within a computer by using a software that is specifically designed for the purpose. This software (or the machine that it is installed on) is often called a robot because it automatically performs actions that would otherwise be done manually by a person – launches applications, presses buttons, populates text fields, reads and writes emails, etc.

However, this is a very primitive description of RPA. A software robot views the same process from a completely different perspective compared to a human. Such a software robot can perform actions in the background of the desktop without the user realizing that something is actually happening. And it is also able to do so by employing technologies such as direct connections to databases, APIs, web services, integrations with various software packages, scripts and codes written in different programming languages, etc. This usually leads to increased effectiveness, speed, stability and the possibility to multitask. At the same time, RPA is a much more powerful tool than a script written in one of the programming languages. That is because a software robot has functionalities that enable it to “decide” on whether a process should start or not. This means that RPA tools can analyse data and use it to – after applying certain logic to it – make a decision not only on how to perform a task, but also whether to perform the at all. And this does not require any expensive integrations with any software packages because RPA can effectively work with any pre-existing software.

And while the technology is great, it’s normal to feel nervous about getting on board, just like one feels nervous about any other first-time experience. Because it’s a step to the unknown: Are we ready? Isn’t RPA for big corporations only? Would our employees accept it as a helpful innovation, or rather as a threat? And how do we even know if it will work the way it’s supposed to? These are all fair questions.


RPA has gained a huge popularity in recent years because these technologies are extremely powerful, have a wide range of applications and at the same time retain the ease-of-use that no other means of automation can compare to. Not to mention the time to deployment and payback being much shorter. However, while long-term efficiency is impossible without automation, statistics show that 3 out of 5 SMB’s fail in their first RPA attempts. Robovirgin was founded with a mission to correct this situation. We specialize in helping SMB’s lose their RPA virginity in the most successful way possible.

These are the main benefits of employing Robovirgin RPA solutions for SMB’s:

  1. Enhanced productivity. Software robots work around the clock. They never go on holiday or a sick leave, nor do they ever quit the job, meaning a single robot has much more time to spend on their work than an average human employee.
  2. Higher efficiency. Software robots work at least 5 times faster than humans (market average – our practice shows that they can go up to a few hundred times faster than humans, depending on the process). This means they are able to do more with the same amount of time. And they can also handle multiple tasks at the same time, effectively increasing efficiency even more.
  3. Improved customer experience. Customers are always much happier when results are delivered fast and without errors.
  4. Standard operational procedures. RPA leads to greater transparency and easier auditing of internal processes. It also enables businesses to easily improve their compliance with regulatory procedures.
  5. Reduces cost. With automation of repetitive manual processes, administrative costs are significantly reduced. And with the elimination of human errors, the cost of correcting human errors is also eliminated.
  6. Easier scalability. When processes are running on autopilot, it is much easier to increase the amount of transactions that need to be handled. In addition to that, when mundane manual tasks are automated, employees are enabled to focus on more value-adding activities (which eventually leads to even more business growth). What we have noticed from experience is that RPA adoption usually leads to improved workplace happiness. This is the magic of organic RPA solutions: when each process is evaluated in the larger context, specific automation solutions lead to excellent ripple effects.
  7. Greater agility. Software robots can be effortlessly retrained to adapt to the seasonality of business and any changes in the market or inside the organization.

We understand that abstract rational arguments aren’t enough to eliminate all doubts. You want your RPA experts to understand your business and your processes, and to offer you a solution that works for you. That’s exactly how we work at Robovirgin: before starting a project, we do our homework and present you with a clear ROI formula.

For a happy first time, click here.