UiPath vs Power Automate

There are many RPA platforms out there that can automate your repetitive, manual tasks. In this article, one of our RPA experts focuses on two, UiPath and Power Automate, and how they compare.

Implementing robotic process automation(RPA) into your organization is an important step when digitally transforming a business. This decision includes choosing an RPA platform to facilitate automations. There are many platforms on the market that can make it seem daunting to choose the best fit for you. Smartbridge has experience automating with several top RPA platforms and seeks to provide an unbiased view. We will compare and discuss the strengths and weaknesses of two popular, leading RPA platforms: UiPath vs Power Automate by Microsoft.

UiPath

UiPath has been a market leader for some time and has rightfully earned this position. UiPath has one of the most complete and robust platforms we have worked with.

Pros:

uipath vs power automate

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  • The analyzer and debugging tool makes automations in UiPath consistent and reliable.

  • The platform possesses a large library of activities that supports 3rd party, community, and personalized libraries.

  • When there is a situation that a current activity cannot handle, UiPath allows traditional coding or low code to be written directly in the automation.

  • UiPath is a rich platform with updates and new features every year, possessing completeness of documentation and training not seen by other RPA platforms.

  • The large community surrounding UiPath makes problem-solving on the platform easier than it otherwise would be on other platforms.

uipath vs power automate
Video courtesy of UiPath

The UiPath platform does have its share of drawbacks. Pricing for RPA can often be confusing, and the initial investments are high. That being said, UiPath is not an exception.

Cons:

  • Many of UiPath’s most interesting features require separate licensing and fees.

  • Problems we have specifically faced are certain specialized libraries and their activities being bugged or deprecated with no plans to update them, leading RPA developers to engineer their own solutions.

  • The user interface can be clunky and confusing to new users. It is easy to learn, but it can take time to become proficient.

Power Automate

Microsoft’s Power Platform has been gaining popularity and for good reason. Keeping with Microsoft’s values of accessibility and user experience Power Automate delivers.

Pros:

uipath vs power automate

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  • Power Automate Desktop (PAD) RPA tool is free to all Windows 10 users for no additional cost. There are some features not accessible without buying a traditional license. These features are: the cloud flows & connectors, AI capabilities, sharing, and scheduling automations.

  • The RPA desktop tool possesses a friendly user interface. The interface is clean and easy to navigate with easy variable management.

  • The platform has a built-in error handling for its activities, which is a nice touch.

  • The most alluring feature is the native compatibility the Power Platform has with Microsoft’s suite of applications. Combined with Microsoft Flow, now rebranded as just Power Automate, the Power Platform can automate many business tasks quickly. It has access to hundreds of built-in connections for the industry’s most popular software such as SAP, Salesforce, and many others.

uipath vs power automate

Power Automate is a relative newcomer to RPA, launched in 2016 and rebranded from Microsoft Flow in 2019. This coupled with the acquisition of Softomotive in 2020 means Microsoft has only been in this market a short time. The maturity of the software shows in a few areas.

  • Connectors, which are amazing for speeding up automations, are only available for online flows.

  • Activities in PAD don’t always work as expected, needing work arounds for tasks that can be accomplished more easily on another platform.

  • Similarly, many standard .Net class and variable types are not present on PAD, which is disappointing for a Microsoft product.

  • The biggest weakness of PAD is its selectors for UI automation. We found that the tool’s selectors can be unreliable and hard to tweak.

  • Lastly, being a new tool there is much less documentation and support available. Microsoft provides training for their product, but it is not well structured and could be more thorough.

UiPath vs Power Automate

Use Case: Automate Web Application

Many web applications have complicated or not easily accessible APIs. When this is the case, you are left with automating the user interface with selectors. Selectors in UiPath are highly customizable and allow for fine-tuning which can’t be found in Power Automate. This makes web automations in UiPath much more reliable than they otherwise would be in Power Automate.

Use Case: Marketing Assistant

Media platforms like YouTube and Twitter are excellent marketing tools for a business. These tools, while simple to use, require manpower to track, post and update. To use an API or UI automation for these activities would be time-consuming for what is otherwise a simple task. The Power Platform has prebuilt flows to cover these needs. You could track video uploads, receive updates when content creators make videos about your business, and tweet updates. These tasks all take minimum effort thanks to flow templates and connectors.

What to Choose?

uipath vs power automate

When it comes to licensing costs and the complexity of obtaining a license, there are many variances between the two platforms. The price and complexity depend on the process that needs to be automated and if the bot is attended/unattended.

Side by side the two platforms have a lot going for both with their own set of drawbacks. There is no clear winner to pick because they excel at very different things. The truth is, like many software and infrastructure decisions the best option is what suits your business needs.

UiPath is a tried and tested platform that has the capability to automate more difficult tasks than other platforms. Its debugging and rule enforcement features make automations dependable.

Microsoft’s Power Automate is easier to use for people without coding experience, inexpensive to start, and its built-in connections with Microsoft products and other software make it perfect for a wide market.

There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to automation. Therefore, Smartbridge practices RPA on several platforms to deliver the best match for your business needs. Your choice of platform will depend on your business priorities & objectives, cost considerations, and complexity of automations.

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