Emerging Technologies that are reshaping business

Technologies Reshaping Business

After GPT/ChatGPT, what technologies are next to reshape business?

While still in its infancy, it appears the recent releases of GPT models are the most significant advancements in technology since the advent of the Internet.  No other technology has leapfrogged us forward into the future, faster than the possibilities of what the AI and GPT models present us.  Not only are we able to immediately find answers we are looking for, but we can have discussions to debate merits, challenge, and have AI models find weaknesses in our theories and analysis.  We can have AI models digest data to help us more easily identify content, opportunities, and issues.  At this moment, it appears we have yet to understand how far-reaching this GPT technology can take us, but with caution, since the technology is still relatively new, and the content issues are not yet fully known.

In this article, we will example several emerging technologies that show promise after GPT models and could potentially have the next significant impact in the future for how we conduct business. Here are a few possibilities:

  1. Quantum Computing: Quantum computers have the potential to solve complex problems much faster than classical computers by leveraging quantum phenomena. If scalable and reliable quantum computers are developed, they could revolutionize fields like cryptography, optimization, drug discovery, and more. For example, drug manufacturers used quantum computing to help advance COVID vaccines in months, rather than the years they would have typically taken to develop (e.g. Moderna and IBM).
  2. Augmented Reality (AR) and Mixed Reality (MR): AR and MR technologies overlay virtual content onto the real world, enhancing our perception and interaction with the environment. As these technologies continue to advance, we can expect transformative applications in areas such as gaming, education, healthcare, design, and remote collaboration. For example, instruction manuals can be viewed through an AR application on your phone and can walk you through a setup of a device in real time, as opposed to reading poorly written paper copies that were included in the device (e.g. TechSee).
  3. Internet of Things (IoT) and Edge Computing: IoT refers to the network of interconnected physical devices that can collect and exchange data. As IoT devices become more prevalent, the need for efficient data processing and analysis increases. Edge computing brings computational power closer to the devices, reducing latency and enabling real-time analysis. These technologies can enhance automation, smart cities, industrial processes, and more. For example, a connected home has a IoT smoke detector that can identify smoke and shut down the IoT thermostat, so smoke doesn’t enter the ventilation system, then alert the fire department (e.g. Google Nest)
  4. Blockchain and Decentralized Applications (dApps): Blockchain technology enables secure and transparent transactions, and it has gained popularity through cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. In the future, blockchain could be utilized beyond cryptocurrencies, enabling decentralized applications, digital identity systems, supply chain management, and secure voting systems. Blockchain probably has the highest degree of impact on the future of business, because of the digital transaction certainty, which finally allows for integrated business to business transactions.  While cryptocurrency transactions have been executed, the technology of digitizing transactions is still in its infancy, with no clear winner of the cryptocurrency to be used to conduct business transactions.  Also, security is still an issue that will require greater controls.
  5. Artificial General Intelligence (AGI): While ChatGPT represents a significant advancement in natural language understanding, AGI refers to highly autonomous systems that can outperform humans across a broad range of tasks. AGI aims to create machines with human-like intelligence, capable of understanding and learning any intellectual task. Achieving AGI would have profound societal and technological implications, which has the potential to cause more damage than good, if not carefully and thoughtfully implemented.

These are just a few possibilities, but the next impactful technology could emerge from a completely new technology or be an advancement in an existing technology. While we cannot predict the future, we know that breakthroughs can come from unsuspecting places, such as when the Kellogg brothers Kellogg, changed breakfast forever when they accidentally flaked wheat berries, which led to Kellogg’s Corn Flakes.

ChatGPT is changing intelligent automation and RPA

Chat Bot in RPA/Automation

Everything you need to know about ChatGPT and how ChatGPT is changing intelligent automation and RPA.

What is ChatGPT?

You can’t talk about ChatGPT without talking about GPT, or Generative Pre-Trained Transformers, which is a type of Large Language Model (LLM).  GPT refers to a family of machine learning models developed by OpenAI. GPT models, like GPT-4, are based on the transformer architecture, which is a deep learning model primarily used for natural language processing (NLP) tasks.

GPT models are “generative” because they are designed to create human-like responses by predicting the most likely next word or sequence of words in a sentence without losing context. GPT models are pre-trained on large amounts of publicly available text from the internet, allowing them to learn the statistical patterns, grammar, and contextual relationships between words. This pre-training helps the models to acquire a broad understanding of language and context.

Chat GPT Self-attention Model

GPT models (and Large Language Models) use a Transformer architecture, which is a method in artificial intelligence that teaches computers to process data like the human brain (also known as “neural networks”).  Transformer models excel at handling sequential data, such as text, and employ self-attention mechanisms to capture relationships between words and encode them into contextualized representations.

Once pre-training is complete, GPT models can be fine-tuned on specific tasks, such as text completion, translation, summarization, or question-answering, by providing them with task-specific training data. The models use a technique called “unsupervised learning” during pre-training and then transition to “supervised learning” during fine-tuning.

GPT models have achieved significant advancements in various Natural Language Processing (NLP) tasks, demonstrating their ability to generate coherent and contextually relevant text. They can be used for a wide range of applications, including chatbots, content generation, language translation, virtual assistants, and more.

Overall, GPT models are highly flexible and powerful language models that have gained significant attention due to their ability to understand and generate human-like text in a wide range of contexts.

So, what is ChatGPT?

ChatGPT is a chatbot powered by an Artificial Intelligence (AI) model that was developed by OpenAI.  The ChatGPT chatbot is accessible from a website, where you can engage and converse (via typing) with an AI model and get instant responses to your questions.  Where Google search will give you results to questions by connecting you with relevant websites, ChatGPT will give you the answers to your questions.  ChatGPT will also allow you to follow-up on your questions with additional questions, keeping your entire history of questions and responses relevant to the subsequent questions.

ChatGPT launched in December 2022, with GPT-3.5, which was trained on 175 billion parameters, whereas ChatGPT-4 is estimated to be trained on 1 trillion parameters.

OpenAI is an American company, founded in 2015, as a non-profit, open-source company, by a large group of Artificial Intelligence scientists and investors.  OpenAI has transitioned from a not-for-profit company to a for-profit company and has a partnership with Microsoft, as its primary investor, investing over $1 billion with an additional $10 billion committed to OpenAI for further research and development.

How should questions be asked to ChatGPT?

  • Keep it simple. Ask straightforward questions.
  • Be specific. Include specific details with your questions.
  • Use keywords. Use specific keywords in your questions to help refine the results.
  • Refine questions and regenerate. ChatGPT allows you to regenerate responses if you want ChatGPT to write another response.  Alternatively, if ChatGPT is not returning the desired response, try asking the question with an alternative approach.

What can ChatGPT be used for?

  • Brainstorming and ideation.
  • Get personalized recommendations.
  • Understand complicated topics.
  • Use as a writing assistant.
  • Summarize research.
  • Assistance with coding and debugging.
  • Translate text from 95 different languages.
  • Create multiple choice questions on a variety of topics and varying difficulties.
  • Get assistance with travel plans, such as restaurants, cultural attractions, flights, and more.
  • Analyze sentiment and tone for positive, negative, or neutral.
  • Find data sets for research, business intelligence, training machine learning models, and more.
  • Train ChatGPT on your own data.
  • Interview preparation and job preparation.
  • Write songs, poems, and stories.

How can ChatGPT be used in RPA/Automation?

ChatGPT can be used in Robotic Process Automation (RPA) in several ways to enhance automation capabilities and improve the interaction between bots and users. Here are a few examples:

  1. Improved solution design. ChatGPT can be used to help explore and consider alternative technologies.  Recently, we worked with a client that was capturing personal information in an Excel form.  We are experienced enough to identify this is not a secure or compliant process to automate as-is, so we suggested and agreed with the client to build a web-based form.  We have seen too often that RPA firms will just automate the as-is process without consideration for best practices, security, or compliance, so process owners, subject matter experts, and RPA CoEs can consider ChatGPT for improving their solution design capabilities.
  2. ChatGPT can help write Excel Marcos, Excel Formulas, Regular Expressions (RegEx), SQL Queries, Python, JavaScript, C++, C#, HTML/CSS, R, Ruby, Java, and more.  You can also use ChatGPT to summarize the code into human language to help with business process owner reviews to ensure the coding is meeting the requirements of the business case.
  3. Intelligent Chatbots. ChatGPT can be integrated into chatbot frameworks used within RPA systems. These chatbots can understand natural language inputs from users and provide context-aware responses, allowing for more intuitive and conversational interactions.
  4. Data Extraction and Validation. ChatGPT can assist in extracting and validating data from unstructured sources such as emails, documents, or web pages. By training the model on specific data extraction tasks, it can automate the process of understanding and extracting relevant information accurately.
  5. Process Documentation and Training. ChatGPT can be used to generate process documentation or training materials by converting technical information into easily understandable language. This can be beneficial for onboarding new employees or documenting complex workflows in a more user-friendly manner.
  6. Exception Handling and Error Resolution. In complex RPA workflows, exceptions and errors can and will occur. ChatGPT can help identify the nature of the issue and suggest appropriate actions for error resolution. It can also provide real-time troubleshooting assistance, reducing the need for human intervention.
  7. Workflow Optimization and Decision Making. ChatGPT can analyze large sets of data and provide insights for optimizing RPA workflows. By processing and interpreting data from various sources, it can make intelligent recommendations for process improvements, resource allocation, or decision making.
  8. User Support and Self-Service. ChatGPT can handle user queries, provide assistance, and offer self-service options within RPA systems. It can guide users through various tasks, answer common questions, and help troubleshoot issues, reducing the need for manual intervention and improving user experience.

It’s important to note that while ChatGPT can enhance RPA capabilities, it’s crucial to consider its limitations and ensure appropriate safeguards are in place to handle scenarios where the model may provide incorrect or misleading information.  We find that ChatGPT is very good on common knowledge, but abstract thinking is still rudimentary in some areas.  ChatGPT is still evolving and growing, so many of these limitations will continue to be resolved.



  1. Open AI: OpenAI is an AI research and deployment company
  2. The Best Examples Of What You Can Do With ChatGPT
  3. Image Source: Cheng et al., 2016. https://arxiv.org/pdf/1601.06733.pdf

Power Automate Desktop: Disrupting the RPA Market

Power Automate Desktop, Vigilant, RPA, Digital Transformation

Power Automate Desktop: Disrupting the RPA Market and Revolutionizing Digital Transformation Solutions


In recent years, the Robotic Process Automation (RPA) market has seen a significant disruption thanks to Microsoft’s Power Automate Desktop. This powerful tool has democratized automation, making it more accessible to organizations of all sizes and industries. At the forefront of harnessing this revolutionary technology is Vigilant, a leader in digital transformation solutions. In this article, we’ll explore how Vigilant has been utilizing Power Automate Desktop to create a substantial impact on business operations and drive digital transformation.

The Power of Power Automate Desktop

Vigilant understands that automation is a cornerstone of modern business operations. By leveraging Power Automate Desktop, Vigilant has been able to harness the full potential of RPA and empower its clients with innovative automation solutions. Let’s take a closer look at how Power Automate Desktop has been integrated into Vigilant’s digital transformation strategies:

1. Streamlined Business Processes

Vigilant has used Power Automate Desktop to streamline complex and time-consuming business processes for its clients. By creating custom automation workflows tailored to each client’s unique needs, Vigilant has significantly reduced manual intervention and errors in various operations. This results in increased efficiency and faster service delivery.

2. Improved Data Accuracy and Quality

Data is at the heart of any successful digital transformation initiative. Vigilant has employed Power Automate Desktop to automate data entry, validation, and integration tasks. By eliminating human error and ensuring data accuracy, clients have been able to make more informed decisions based on reliable data, ultimately driving better business outcomes.

3. Enhanced Customer Experience

A key aspect of digital transformation is improving the customer experience. Vigilant has leveraged Power Automate Desktop to automate customer interactions, such as responding to inquiries, processing orders, and handling support tickets. This has led to quicker response times, personalized customer interactions, and overall higher customer satisfaction.

4. Cost Savings and Scalability

Power Automate Desktop’s cost-effective nature aligns with Vigilant’s commitment to delivering value to its clients. By automating repetitive tasks and reducing the need for manual labor, Vigilant has helped clients achieve cost savings and optimize resource allocation. Additionally, the scalability of Power Automate Desktop enables clients to adapt to changing business demands without significant overhead.

5. Seamless Integration

Vigilant’s expertise in integrating Power Automate Desktop with various systems and applications has been instrumental in achieving a holistic digital transformation. Whether it’s integrating with ERP systems, CRM platforms, or legacy applications, Vigilant ensures a seamless flow of information across the organization, enhancing overall productivity.

Power Automate Desktop Connectors

Vigilant recognizes that a seamless integration with a variety of technologies is essential for any successful digital transformation initiative. Power Automate Desktop’s connectors have played a pivotal role in Vigilant’s approach to delivering innovative automation solutions. Here’s how these connectors have been leveraged:

1. Data Integration: Power Automate Desktop’s connectors allow Vigilant to seamlessly integrate with various data sources, both on-premises and in the cloud. This enables the automation of data extraction, transformation, and loading (ETL) processes, ensuring that clients have access to accurate and up-to-date information for decision-making.

2. Application Integration: Vigilant has used Power Automate Desktop’s connectors to integrate with a wide range of applications, from CRMs to ERP systems. This integration streamlines business processes by automating tasks such as data entry, order processing, and report generation.

3. Email Automation: With Power Automate Desktop’s connectors to email platforms, Vigilant has automated email-based workflows. This includes tasks such as email parsing, categorization, and response generation. It has significantly improved communication efficiency within organizations.

4. Web Automation: Vigilant has harnessed Power Automate Desktop’s web connectors to automate web-based tasks. This includes web scraping, form filling, and online data retrieval, reducing the need for manual intervention in web-related processes.

5. Legacy System Integration: Power Automate Desktop’s connectors extend to legacy systems, allowing Vigilant to modernize and automate outdated processes. This integration ensures that clients can leverage automation across their entire technology stack.

6. Cloud Services: In addition to its connectors to Azure, Power Automate Desktop offers connectors to other cloud services. This flexibility has allowed Vigilant to create automation solutions that span across different cloud environments, providing clients with the freedom to choose the services that best fit their needs.


Vigilant has embraced the disruption brought about by Power Automate Desktop in the RPA market, using it as a cornerstone in their digital transformation solutions. By streamlining processes, improving data accuracy, enhancing the customer experience, and delivering cost savings, Vigilant has created a significant impact on business operations for its clients. The combination of Vigilant’s expertise and Power Automate Desktop’s capabilities has resulted in successful digital transformations that empower organizations to thrive in the modern, data-driven business landscape. As automation continues to evolve, Vigilant remains at the forefront, driving innovation and delivering real business value. Vigilant’s commitment to excellence in digital transformation ensures that their clients are well-prepared for the challenges and opportunities of the future.



RPA Use Cases: What are good processes to automate with RPA?

What are good processes to automate with RPA?
The following article is not an exhaustive list of business processes, but it is designed to share some ideas on what processes are good candidates for automation. Please feel free to share your feedback and any ideas to add or adjust, so we can make this a community forum for everyone to benefit from.

RPA Use Cases

Procure to Pay

·       Supplier Onboarding

·       Portal queries

·       Price comparisons

·       Vendor reviews

·       Validate contract terms

·       Category Management


Oracle Finance Close

·       Sub-Ledger Closing

·       General Ledger Close

·       Data Assurance

·       Consolidation

·       Internal Management Reporting

·       External Financial Reporting

·       Filing

Quote to Cash

·       Supplier pricing comparisons

·       Order exception processing

·       Delivery reconciliation

·       Customer onboarding and master data maintenance

Record to Report

·       Supporting financial close

·       Data extraction for accounting close

·       Data management

Finance & Accounting Use Cases

·       Customer Payment Application

·       Supplier Invoice Processing

·       Supplier Payment Processing

·       Supplier Onboarding

·       Customer Onboarding

·       Bank Reconciliations

·       Account Reconciliations

·       Create Journals

·       Website Downloads (Bank, Financial, Tax, State, Utility, Phone, etc)

·       Report creation

HR Use Cases

·       Candidate sourcing

·       New Hire onboarding

·       Payroll automation

·       Expense management

·       Employee data management

·       Termination


Manufacturing Use Cases

·       Bill Of Materials

·       Bill of Lading

·       Logistics data automation

·       Inventory management

·       External communications

Supply Chain Use Cases

·       Purchase order creation

·       Contract management

·       Shipment Status Communication

·       Returns Processing

·       Updating vendor records

Energy & Utilities Use Cases

·       Meter Reading Validation

·       Billing and Statements

·       Payment Reversal/Adjustment Claims

·       Complaints Management

·       Risk Assessment

IT Use Cases

·       Administration tasks

·       Running diagnostics

·       System checks

·       Managing patch processes

·       Managing backups

·       Password Resets

Insurance Use Cases

·       Claims

o   First Notice of Loss (FNOL)

o   Adjustments

o   Settlements

·       Underwriting

o   Policy registration, administration, and servicing

o   Renewals

o   Cancellations

·       Audit and Regulatory Compliance

·       Sales and Distribution


Customer Service & Support Desk

·       Incident management

·       Billing queries

·       User administration

·       Updating records

·       Incoming customer inquiry


General Ideas

·       Website Scraping

·       Data transfer between systems

·       Calling APIs

·       Running queries

·       Creating reports

·       Refreshing dashboards

RPA Glossary: Your Ultimate Guide to the Robotic Process Automation

Industry 4.0 manufacturing

RPA Glossary: Robotic Process Automation Guide that provides valuable insights into RPA

Thank you for clicking on this article.  Enclosed in this article is our comprehensive point of view for all things Robotic Process Automation (RPA) that you may have heard about, may have wondered about, or it will be new concepts for you.  We hope this provides valuable insights into RPA and gives you help on your journey.  If we are missing any term or concept you wish to learn about, please let us know and we will share with you our insights and keep this article updated with the feedback we receive.  Thank you in advance for sharing your RPA journey with us and please let us know how we can help.

Topics Covered:

What is Robotic Process Automation (RPA)?

Understanding Process vs. Task Automation

Common RPA Evaluation Criteria Used to Identify Good Automation Candidates

What tasks can digital workers perform?

Where is RPA used?

Benefits of RPA

What is Intelligent Process Automation (IPA)?

Attended vs. Unattended Automation

What is a Citizen Developer?

Creating a successful automation program

What to know about RPA tools

What else should I be aware of?

What is Robotic Process Automation (RPA)? 

In simple terms….Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is a computer software (aka “robot” or “Digital Worker”) that emulates the actions of a human interacting with a computer.  RPA is best used to perform any series of manual tasks that are repetitive, easily defined, and high volume.

Understanding Process vs. Task Automation 

  • A task is a single isolated step or function, like downloading a bank statement from a bank website. A business process consists of several tasks that work in conjunction to complete a process.  For example, a bank statement reconciliation process might have the steps of 1) download the bank statement from the bank website, 2) run an account balance report from the General Ledger, 3) perform a reconciliation between the two files, 4) Create a journal entry for any reconciling items found in the reconciliation.

Common RPA Evaluation Criteria Used to Identify Good Automation Candidates

Rule-Based Activities that can be described with well-defined rules
Easily Described Activities that can be easily articulated, explained, and documented
High Transaction Volumes Tasks that have a high number of volumes typically have many people performing the manual steps, therefore the process has an increased probability of a strong ROI
Low Exceptions Activities that have little variation from the standard process path will create a lower number of exceptions that require manual intervention
Stable and Well-Defined Processes Processes that are mature will typically have minimal volatility to account for in an automation
Minimal System Changes Stable and mature systems require less maintenance for ongoing automation support
Structured Data and Readable Electronic Inputs Structured, digital data is easier for the robot to read, extract, manipulate, and process in the subsequent process steps.  Unorganized data requires more effort and time to identify patterns and develop to structure (if possible), which erodes your ROI
People are Passionate About the Process Automating processes that team members don’t care about can take away from an automation program’s momentum.  Automating processes that people care about can create internal advocates that help promote the automation program benefits, which helps minimize employee concerns about the program and facilitates the identification of new process candidates to automate.


What tasks can digital workers perform?

  • Log into any application
  • Open emails and attachments
  • Read and extract data from documents, PDFs, emails, and forms
  • Enter data into applications
  • Copy and paste data
  • Move files and folders
  • Scrape data from a web page
  • Make calculations
  • Connect to system APIs
  • Read and write to databases
  • Run macros, execute formulas and lookups
  • Assemble reports from various data sources


Where is RPA used?

RPA can be applied to any process where a user is actively engaged in manual, repetitive, standardized tasks that engage a computer.

Finance Human Resources Legal Supply Chain Insurance
•    Process Invoices

•    Account Reconciliation

•    Reporting

•    Bank Statement Reconciliations

•    On/Off-Boarding Employees

•    Payroll

•    User Profile Management

•    Provisioning/ Deprovisioning

•    Bots document every action for traceability

•    Reduces risk of fraud and security exposure

•    Hardwires procedures in place for compliance

•    Vendor Management

•    Process Work Orders

•    Bill of Materials

•    Item Setup in system

•    Processing Claims

•    Policy Entry

•    Generating Reports



Benefits of RPA

Operational efficiencies across the enterprise


  • Dramatically improves processing speeds
  • Improves accuracy of processing
  • Identifies anomalies quickly for human intervention



  • Easily scales up/down to meet demand
  • Collect processing data for analysis
  • Repatriate outsourced business processes
  • Let bots work in the slower, outdated legacy platforms
  • Pathway to advanced technology (e.g. OCR, NLP, ML, AI)



  • Reduces FTEs in business processing
  • Allows human workers to do more creative, engaging value-added activities
  • Reduces department turnover
  • Digital workers can work 24 hours a day
  • Decreases recruitment and training cost



  • Capture transaction details for traceability and auditing
  • Reduces risk of fraud and data security exposure by minimizing human contact with data
  • Reduces risk of non-compliance by hardwiring processes in place



  • Less IT support needed to oversee bots than custom automation programs
  • A robust RPA system can deliver greater security, with less human Interference


Not all benefits are guaranteed.  Read our article to learn more about RPA benefits: RPA Benefits Exposed

What is Intelligent Process Automation (IPA)?

Intelligent automation is the combination of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and robotic process automation that is used to create smart business processes and workflows that think, learn, and adapt on their own.   Technologies often used in intelligent automation are Desktop Process Automation (DPA), Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Computer Vision, Process Intelligence, Advanced Analytics, Machine Learning (ML), Natural Language Processing (NLP), and Cognitive Agents.

Attended vs. Unattended Automation

Below offers a simple explanation of Attended RPA and Unattended RPA, which are terms often used when discussing RPA processing.

Attended RPA Principles Unattended RPA
RPA automations that execute on the computer desktop under supervision of the human Simple explanation RPA automations that execute the automation on virtual desktops without human supervision
Started with human engagement How it works Started with a predefined schedule, event, or by a human action
Processes that include steps that require human intervention, like entering credentials into a system where is robot privileges are restricted. Best use Any process that can be automated and does not require human intervention or supervision to execute.
•      User passwords exposure can create risk and compliance issues

•      User training

•      Establishing and enforcing guidelines

•      User support

•      Monitoring user work

Biggest Considerations •      Attended automation use cases might be overlooked because of the required user involvement

•      Not delivering “lower value” automations to the staff (e.g. report automation, daily downloads, etc)

What is a Citizen Developer?

Gartner defines a Citizen Developer as:


A citizen developer is an employee who creates application capabilities for consumption by themselves or others, using tools that are not actively forbidden by IT or business units. A citizen developer is a persona, not a title or targeted role. They report to a business unit or function other than IT.


All citizen developers are business technologists.  However, all business technologists are not necessarily citizen developers.  There is no required designation of proficiency or time allocation for citizen developers but they must be legal employees of an organization.


Citizen Developers can create risk for enterprises by having unskilled developers creating automations against core operational and financial systems that are not aligned with CoE standards.  These automations could expose passwords, enter invalid data, or create issues for IT by bogging down networks, etc.  We recommend having a policy in place to govern Citizen Developers by ensuring your operational risks are being monitored and accounted for.  That being said, Citizen Developers can help you scale the efficiency of your operations and can help you key team members help the teams they serve.

Creating a successful automation program

Achieving maximized value from your automation program is a balance between prioritizing business needs, highest ROI, and using building blocks for a tactical approach to delivery.  Every organization will have to decide which path is right for them, but having a strategy defined is critical for fastest path to value.


Business Needs vs. Building Blocks

•        Gives immediate satisfaction to business process owners

•        Accelerates the addressing of known issues / opportunities


•        Higher development costs compared to Building Blocks approach

•        More complexity (typically)

•        Bigger risk

•        Longer path to value



•        Lower delivery costs

•        Less complexity

•        Reduces risk

•        Shorter path to value

•        Business process owners understand and appreciate path to value


•        Slower path to addressing notable opportunities




What to know about RPA tools

Fundamentally, all RPA tools are designed to automate business processes.  Some tools go about the automation differently, but they accomplish the same objectives.  Our point of view is that each tool architecture aligns better with certain organizations.  Meaning, tools like UiPath or Automation Anywhere are much more technical and require development skills when you get into more advanced automations, therefore an organization with a strong IT presence and an established software development lifecycle (SDLC) would be best suited.  Organizations that are more business led, with less IT presence and no established SDLC, tools like Blue Prism are most effective because there is less development required and most users with advanced Excel training can learn the tool.


Debugging an automation is a consideration for RPA tool platforms, but typically not a significant reason people will select an RPA tool.  Good architects can reduce the pain of debugging by separating out parts of an automation to minimize the difficulties with debugging an automation.


Cost is another consideration when selecting an RPA platform.  Our point of view is that RPA should not be expensive, so an expensive RPA platform takes away from the ROI on your automations.


Robot Management, Scalability, Reporting, and Monitoring are all factors in deciding which platform is right for you.


Security used to be a primary driver, but most platforms are developed with industry standards and compliance certification and best practices.


System and workforce integration must be a consideration because RPA through the user interface is prone to failure, so the ability to make API and database calls, et al, is critical for developing automations that are resilient and have maximized throughput.


Lastly, it is acceptable to have a multi-tool approach to automation.  If one tool works better for the enterprise and one tool is better and less expensive for task automation, it is an acceptable solution to have multiple tools to support automation.  The key is really making sure you can support your enterprise across both task and process automation with an effective ROI, from the initial build perspective, but also the total cost of ownership (TCO) with the ongoing expenses of support and robot licensing.

What else should I be aware of?

  • RPA is just a tool in your transformation toolbox, but not your only tool. Don’t get sucked into thinking RPA has to solve all of your processing problems.  Look at the opportunity and desired outcome, then work to determine the right technology.
  • Use building blocks to execute your automation program to take advantage of components built in earlier steps to reduce the risk and complexity of certain automations. The alternative approach is to automate the biggest opportunities, but then you are likely to be absorbing high risk and complexity, whereas the building block approach is not as flashy, but slow and steady wins the race.
  • Solution architects can make or break your automation program. Good solution architects will know how to leverage technology and not just follow what the business process owners are doing today.  Too often, we see many automations that follow the human path, which harden bad business processes and practices.  Architects will work to help the organization transform to create impactful automations that truly transform the way business processes are executed.
  • Be wary of automations that create data debt. Often, organizations buy into the illusion that certain processes will have a significant ROI, so they neglect to look at the process inputs to see if they are standardized to address a root cause issue with the data onboarding.  For example, AP invoice registration automations utilize vendor data, but typically vendor data is not governed and therefore vendor tables are known to have duplicates and incorrect information on the key vendors.  The bad vendor data causes everyone downstream to have to build their own mapping tables or workarounds for the inconsistent vendor data, whereas if the automation team worked on standardizing the vendor data onboarding to ensure it follows standards, then every process downstream that leverages the data is easier to automate with less variations and less hard coding.
  • Have a development methodology. Organizations that allow developers to follow their own paths will pay more for support in the long run than organizations that use a standardized methodology for development.  Standardized development is critical for accelerating troubleshooting and debugging in production.  Standardized development also speeds up quality control and development reviews because the reviewer knows what to expect and can read through the code faster than having to decipher how a developer coded their automation.

Power Automate Desktop: A Rising Star in the RPA Arena

Power Automate Desktop, RPA tool


In the rapidly evolving world of business automation, Robotic Process Automation (RPA) stands out as a transformative technology. Vigilant Technologies, a leading integration partner in the USA, deeply understands this evolution, especially in the realm of RPA and Intelligent Process Automation (IPA). As businesses strive for efficiency and innovation, the choice of the right RPA tool becomes crucial. This is where Microsoft’s Power Automate Desktop enters the scene.

Power Automate Desktop has emerged as a strong contender in the RPA marketplace, challenging established players like UiPath, Blue Prism, and Automation Anywhere. In this article, we delve into the reasons why Power Automate Desktop is not just another RPA tool but a viable, competitive solution for businesses seeking to automate their processes. With Vigilant Technologies’ expertise in process optimization and system integration, we explore the unique aspects of Power Automate Desktop that make it stand out in the crowded field of RPA solutions.

Power Automate Desktop: Features and Benefits

  1. User-Friendly, Low-Code Interface
    • Key Benefit: Empowers users with varying technical skills to build automation.
    • Impact: Dramatically lowers the barrier to entry for automation, enabling a wider range of employees to contribute to process optimization.
  1. Seamless Microsoft Integration
    • Key Benefit: Direct integration with Microsoft 365 suite, including Excel, Outlook, and SharePoint.
    • Impact: Streamlines workflows for businesses already invested in the Microsoft ecosystem, enhancing productivity and collaboration.
  1. Cost-Effective
    • Key Benefit: More affordable than many of its competitors, especially for small to medium-sized businesses.
    • Impact: Provides a lower financial entry point for businesses beginning their automation journey, offering a significant ROI.
  1. AI and Cognitive Services
    • Key Benefit: Incorporates AI capabilities and cognitive services for advanced automation tasks.
    • Impact: Enables businesses to automate more complex processes, such as data extraction and processing, leveraging AI for enhanced efficiency.
  1. Scalability and Reliability
    • Key Benefit: As a Microsoft product, it benefits from robust cloud infrastructure, ensuring scalability and reliability.
    • Impact: Businesses can scale their automation efforts confidently, knowing the underlying platform is secure and dependable.
  1. Extensive Pre-built Connectors
    • Key Benefit: Offers a wide range of pre-built connectors to various applications and services.
    • Impact: Simplifies the process of integrating different systems and services, reducing development time and complexity.
  1. Custom Scripting Capabilities
    • Key Benefit: Allows for custom scripting in various languages, offering flexibility for complex automations.
    • Impact: Provides the ability to tailor automation to specific business needs, accommodating unique processes and workflows.
  1. Continuous Updates and Community Support
    • Key Benefit: Regular updates from Microsoft and a strong community for support and sharing best practices.
    • Impact: Ensures that the tool stays current with the latest technological advancements and provides a platform for learning and growth.

In summary, Power Automate Desktop offers a blend of accessibility, integration, cost-efficiency, and advanced features, making it a potent tool for businesses looking to embrace automation.

Comparison with Competitors


  • Strengths: Known for its extensive library of pre-built activities and a strong developer community. Offers advanced features like AI and machine learning capabilities, appealing to enterprises requiring complex automation solutions.
  • Considerations: More complex and feature-rich, which might require more technical expertise and training. Generally, it is a more expensive solution, making it less accessible for smaller businesses.

Blue Prism

  • Strengths: Highly regarded for its enterprise-grade security and robustness. Offers excellent scalability and control for large-scale automation deployments.
  • Considerations: Higher cost and complexity level compared to other RPA tools. Requires more technical expertise, potentially limiting its accessibility to smaller businesses or those with limited IT resources.

Automation Anywhere

  • Strengths: Provides a comprehensive suite of AI-powered tools, making it suitable for complex, cognitive automation tasks. Known for its strong analytics capabilities.
  • Considerations: May have a steeper learning curve due to its comprehensive features. The cost can also be a barrier for smaller businesses or those with limited budgets.

In contrast, Power Automate Desktop, with its user-friendly interface, cost-effectiveness, and seamless integration with Microsoft products, appeals to a broad range of businesses, particularly those already within the Microsoft ecosystem or those seeking a more accessible entry into RPA.

Why Power Automate Desktop Stands Out

  1. Accessibility and Ease of Use
    • Power Automate Desktop’s intuitive interface allows even non-technical users to create and deploy automation workflows. This accessibility accelerates adoption and reduces the need for extensive training.
  1. Seamless Integration with Microsoft Products
    • Its integration with Microsoft 365 suite streamlines processes for businesses already using these tools, enhancing productivity and collaboration without needing additional software.
  1. Cost-Effective Solution
    • Its competitive pricing makes it an ideal choice for small to medium-sized businesses looking to start their automation journey without a significant upfront investment.
  1. Flexibility and Customization
    • The platform offers flexibility with custom scripting and a range of connectors, allowing businesses to tailor automation to their unique needs and existing systems.
  1. Backed by Microsoft’s Robust Ecosystem
    • Being a Microsoft product, it benefits from continuous updates, a secure cloud infrastructure, and a vast support network, ensuring reliability and scalability for businesses as they grow.

These factors collectively make Power Automate Desktop a standout choice, particularly for organizations seeking a user-friendly, cost-effective, and flexible RPA tool that integrates seamlessly into their existing Microsoft environment.


In the realm of RPA tools, Power Automate Desktop by Microsoft emerges not just as an alternative but as a viable, potent solution, especially in scenarios where user-friendliness, cost-effectiveness, and integration with Microsoft products are paramount. Leveraging Vigilant Technologies’ expertise in process optimization and integration, Power Automate Desktop can be a strategic choice for businesses looking to enhance efficiency and innovation in their operations. As the RPA market continues to evolve, Power Automate Desktop is well-positioned to gain popularity among businesses eager to embrace automation in an efficient, scalable, and cost-effective manner.