Exploring Attended and Unattended RPA Solutions

By Sean Ammon, Managing Director, CIBA

In the realm of Robotic Process Automation (RPA), two distinct categories of bots play pivotal roles in reshaping the way businesses handle automation, known as Attended RPA and Unattended RPA. Understanding the differences between these two approaches is crucial for organisations seeking to optimise their processes and boost efficiency.

Attended RPA: Collaborative Virtual Assistants

Attended RPA is characterised by human-bot collaboration, where virtual assistants work closely with individual employees to enhance productivity. Traditionally confined to a single employee’s desktop, Attended RPA bots assist with front-office tasks by collaborating with employees and teams. Employees trigger these bots and interact with them as needed. Managers can orchestrate tasks between people and bots, fostering seamless coordination across internal resources.

Key features of Attended RPA include:

  1. Human-Bot Collaboration: Employees activate and interact with bots as needed during their tasks.
  2. Flexibility in Deployment: Attended bots can run on workstations, private servers, or in the cloud.
  3. Enhanced Productivity: Attended RPA aims to increase productivity, reduce call handle time, enhance customer experience, and ensure compliance.

Unattended RPA: Independent Automation at Scale

In contrast, unattended RPA focuses on automation that works independently, aiming for end-to-end automation of entire business processes. Unattended bots operate on a rules-based process, following a preset schedule or triggered by logic in the process flow. This approach is designed for back-office processes that can be automated at scale.

Key features of Unattended RPA include:

  1. Independence and Scale: Unattended bots work autonomously, executing processes independently, at scale.
  2. Scheduled Automation: These bots operate on a preset schedule or based on logic in the process flow.
  3. Efficiency and Error Reduction: Unattended RPA aims to reduce operating costs, increase productivity, eliminate errors, free employees from repetitive work, and ensure compliance.

Choosing the Right Approach for Your Business:

When deciding between Attended and Unattended RPA, it’s essential to consider the nature of your processes and the level of human-bot collaboration required. Attended RPA is ideal for tasks that benefit from human intervention, while Unattended RPA excels in achieving end-to-end automation and scalability.

In conclusion, the choice between Attended and Unattended RPA depends on the specific needs and goals of your organisation. By understanding the distinctive features of each approach, businesses can strategically implement RPA to optimise workflows, reduce costs, and drive overall operational excellence.


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