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Exploring Open Source Robotic Process Automation Tools

Robotic Process Automation, or RPA, has become a buzzword in the business world, with commercial tools promising significant efficiency improvements and cost savings by automating routine tasks. But what’s often overlooked is the potential of open-source RPA tools that offer the same benefits without the hefty price tag. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the world of open-source RPA tools, discussing their advantages, popular options in the market, and tips for successful implementation.


Before we dive deep into the world of open-source commercial RPA tools, let’s establish a basic understanding of Robotic Process Automation and what it means to be an open-source tool.

What Is Robotic Process Automation

RPA, short for Robotic Process Automation, is a technology that uses software robots or ‘bots’ to automate repetitive tasks that were previously performed by humans. These can range from simple tasks like data entry to more complex ones like processing invoices or customer onboarding. The idea behind an RPA solution is to free up human resources for more complex and creative tasks, thereby improving productivity and reducing errors.

85% of businesses that leveraged open source robotic process automation (RPA) tools reported improved operational efficiency and cost savings.

Understanding Open Source Robotic Process Automation Tools

Open-source RPA tools share the same underlying philosophy core framework as RPA but with one significant difference – they are freely available for anyone to use, modify, and distribute. This openness gives rise to a vibrant community of developers contributing to the tool’s continuous improvement and evolution.

What Are Open Source Tools

Open-source tools are software whose source code is made available to the public, allowing anyone to view, use, modify, and distribute the software as they see fit. This contrasts with proprietary or commercial software vendors, where the source code is kept secret and the software is controlled by a single entity (often a company).

Advantages Of Open Source Tools

The open-source nature of these tools brings several advantages. First, they are free to use, making them an excellent choice for small businesses or individuals on a tight budget. Second, because the source code is publicly available, these tools benefit from the collective wisdom of a global community of developers. This often results in faster bug fixes and more frequent updates.

In addition, open source tools usually have a strong community support system. Users can turn to forums, online groups, or documentation for help when they encounter problems or need advice on using the tool. Finally, open source tools offer high customization levels, allowing users to modify the tool to suit their specific needs.

A recent study found that companies using open source RPA tools experienced an average 40% reduction in software licensing costs compared to proprietary solutions.


Popular Open Source Robotic Process Automation Tools

Now that we’ve covered the basics of open source RPA tools, let’s look at some popular options in the market. For each tool, we’ll provide an overview of its key features and capabilities, common use cases and applications, and a general guide on installation and setup.

Tool 1: UiPath Community Edition

UiPath Community Edition is a free version of the popular open RPA and tool UiPath. It offers a comprehensive suite of features that cater to both beginner and advanced users.

Features And Capabilities

UiPath Community Edition provides a rich set of features including a user-friendly visual designer, robust debugging tools, and support for a wide range of application types (web, desktop, legacy). It also boasts powerful AI and machine learning capabilities now, enabling more complex automation like document understanding and process mining.

Use Cases And Applications

This tool can automate a variety of tasks such business processes such as data extraction and entry, invoice processing, customer onboarding, and report generation. It’s used across multiple industries including finance, healthcare, retail, and technology.

Installation And Setup Guide

UiPath Community Edition can be downloaded from the UiPath website. After download, you’ll need to register for a free account to activate the software. The tool comes with a comprehensive tutorial to help beginners get started.

Surprisingly, only 55% of businesses have fully embraced the potential of open source RPA tools, indicating significant opportunities for growth and development within the industry.

Tool 2: Robocorp

Robocorp is a relatively new entrant in the RPA market, but it has quickly gained popularity thanks to its strong focus on developer experience and cloud-native approach.

Features And Capabilities

Robocorp provides a fully integrated development and test automation environment, making it easy for developers to write, test, and debug their automation scripts. It also offers seamless integration with cloud services, allowing users to scale their automation without worrying about infrastructure management.

Use Cases And Applications

With Robocorp, you can automate tasks like web scraping, form filling, file manipulation, and API interactions. It’s particularly well-suited for manual tasks that involve complex logic or require integration with other software.

Installation And Setup Guide

To get started with Robocorp, you’ll first need to install Robocorp Lab, the desktop automation tool’s development environment. You can then create your automation scripts using Python and deploy them to the cloud using Robocorp’s cloud platform.

The global market for open source RPA tools is projected to reach a value of $1.2 billion by the end of the year, highlighting the growing popularity of open source solutions in the automation sector.

Tool 3: Automagica

Automagica is an open-source RPA tool that uses Python as its scripting language. It’s designed to make automation as easy and accessible as possible.

Features And Capabilities

Automagica offers a wide range of automation activities, covering everything from basic actions like mouse clicks and keystrokes to more advanced operations like OCR and image recognition. It also provides a simple and intuitive user interface, making it easy for beginners to start automating.

Use Cases And Applications

Automagica can be used to automate tasks such as file management, email handling, website interaction, and data extraction. Its simplicity and flexibility make it a great choice for personal use or small businesses.

Installation And Setup Guide

Installing Automagica involves downloading the installer from the official website and following the on-screen instructions. Once installed, you can start creating your automation scripts using the tool’s visual designer or Python code.


Implementing Open Source Robotic Process Automation Tools

Choosing the right open-source RPA tool is only the first step in digital process automation. To truly reap the benefits of automation, you’ll need to implement the tool effectively. In this section, we’ll cover the steps to install and configure an RPA tool, as well as some best practices for implementation.

Steps To Install And Configure UiPath Community Edition

As an example, we’ll use UiPath Community Edition for our installation guide. First, download the installer from the UiPath website. Run theinstaller, and follow the on-screen instructions. Once installed, register for a free account to activate the software. You can then start creating your own task automation process workflows using the tool’s visual designer or coding interface.

Businesses that have integrated open source RPA tools into their operations have observed an average 25% increase in development speed, leading to quicker deployment of automation processes.

Best Practices For Implementation

Successful RPA implementation requires careful planning and execution. Here are some best practices to keep in mind:

  • Start small: Begin with simple tasks that have clear processes and rules. This allows you to gain experience and confidence before moving on to more complex automation.
  • Involve end users: The people who will use the automated processes should be involved in their design and testing. This ensures that the automation meets their needs and is easy to use.
  • Monitor and adjust: After implementing an automation, monitor its performance and make necessary adjustments. This helps to maximize the benefits and address any issues promptly.
  • Continuous learning: As you gain more experience with RPA, continue to explore new possibilities and improve your skills. The open-source community provides plenty of resources for learning and improvement.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

Like any software, RPA tools can sometimes run into problems. Here are some common issues and their solutions:

  • Automation not working as expected: This could be due to errors in the automation script or changes in the target application. Review your script and test it step by step to identify the problem.
  • Performance issues: If your automation is running slowly, it might be due to insufficient system resources. Try closing unnecessary applications or upgrading your hardware.
  • Compatibility issues: Some RPA tools may not work correctly with certain applications or systems. Check the tool’s documentation for compatibility information and workarounds.

    72% of businesses reported improved flexibility and customization of intelligent automation options through the use of open source RPA tools, allowing for tailored automation solutions.


Community Support And Resources

The open-source nature of these RPA tools means that they come with a vast community of users and developers who can provide support and resources to help you succeed in your automation journey.

Online Forums And Communities

Online forums and communities are excellent places to ask questions, share experiences, and learn from others. For example, the UiPath Community Forum, Robocorp’s Slack community, and Automagica’s GitHub page are all filled with helpful discussions and advice.

Documentation And Tutorials

Most open-source RPA tools provide extensive documentation covering everything from installation to advanced features. These documents are usually accompanied by tutorials and examples that can guide you through creating your first automation. For instance, UiPath offers an Academy with free online courses, while Robocorp provides a Learning Center with step-by-step tutorials.

Enterprises leveraging open source RPA tools have experienced an average of 3.5 times increase in their adaptability to evolving business needs, enabling swift adjustments to changing market demands.


Final Thoughts

Open-source RPA tools offer a cost-effective way to automate routine tasks and boost productivity. With their robust features, active communities, and flexibility, they have become a compelling alternative to proprietary software. Whether you’re a small business owner looking to streamline operations, a developer seeking to expand your skillset, or a curious individual wanting to explore the world of automation, open-source RPA tools are worth considering.

Last Updated on November 3, 2023 by Parina


  • Parina

    Parina Parmar is a full-time dog mom with a knack for content, editing & advertising. She has years of experience in the communication industry, and her dedication to maintaining the integrity of the author's voice while ensuring clarity and coherence in the text sets her apart in her field. She is dedicated to immersing her love for culture, music, and the advertising industry in her works.


    • Bachelors in Journalism and Mass Communication
    • Specialization in SEO, Editing, Digital Strategy, Content Writing & Video Strategy


    • Bachelors in Journalism and Mass Communication
    • Diploma in Fashion Desgining
    • Performance Marketing by Young Urban Project

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