RPA technology-related costs
Technology providers have approached licensing from various angles, which makes direct cost comparison complex. To estimate your costs, you need to understand each technology’s associated cost elements and the differences between the pricing models.
Technology-related cost dimensions:
- Commitment term: on-demand / fixed term
- Upfront payment or consumption-based
- Pricing of RPA complementary elements like intelligent document processing, process mining, analytics, etc.
- Development and other non-production license costs
- The cost of setting up the infrastructure
The challenge with fixed-term RPA buying models is that you often end up buying more capacity than you use (watch from 5:40 to hear about customer cases where flexibility has significantly improved results).
During a peak month once a year, you need 8 licenses to handle your transaction volumes. To meet this requirement, you will need to commit to the 8 licenses for a fixed time ranging from 12 to 36 months – even if your average monthly need is well below that number.
RPA vendors and service providers typically place value on tools, products, and technologies, ignoring to what extent these tools are used to create customer value, i.e., whether the RPA is running and correctly executing the tasks assigned to it.
These models are also locked into buying a specific technology. This can be another limiting factor in extracting business value, especially when another solution would be more suitable to meet particular process requirements. Fast-evolving RPA technologies often have different update cycles, so tapping into arising opportunities across the field requires flexibility, not only in capacity but also in technology choice.
RPA people-related costs
As discussed above, organizations looking to use RPA on an industrial scale should at least fill the roles of RPA program manager, developer, analyst, administrator, and operations expert. RPA-related costs include training and hiring these experts, organizing project management, and running automation.