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Difference between RPA and Cognitive Intelligence

There is a constant debate between organizations about using Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and the Cognitive Intelligence of humans among business circles. The RPA Intelligence technology manages software robots that mimic human actions of handling repetitive and rule-based tasks, usually in sectors like telecommunications, banking, finance, healthcare.

Cognitive Intelligence in humans is the ability to reason, rationalize, solve problems and make inferences from the information. When coupled with machines, this Intelligence leads to an advanced technology that will enable the apps, websites, bots, and other portals to see, speak, hear, and interact with humans through natural language processing.

Organizations need to understand the gaping differences between RPA and Cognitive Intelligence before evaluating and choosing between one of the two.

Contrasting Applications:

Simply put, the gaping difference between RPA will imitate human chores with precision and accuracy. While cognitive Intelligence thinks and analyzes information at hand as humans do, which is way more complex than the repetitive actions performed by RPA automation.

The technology of RPA intelligence is devised to follow simple instructions and is not expected to respond to unpredictable situations or events. But cognitive Intelligence is expected to learn more from a task, make inferences based on available data, and decide if the AI can perform the task or requires human intervention, which would have been an impossible task, if required of an RPA automation.

Different Technologies used:

RPA automation uses essential technologies like screen scraping, macro script, and workflow automation. Cognitive Intelligence needs advanced technologies like Natural language processing (NLP), Text Analysis, Data mining, Semantic Technology and Machine Learning.

As is said by the famous Automation expert Wayne Butterfield, “RPA is a technology that makes robots out of humans, whereas Cognitive Automation is putting humans in the robot.” RPA performs simple process-oriented tasks that are time consuming and repetitive. Cognitive intelligence studies human behavior to understand, make inferences and predictions about human behavior.

Dealing with Data:

RPA is like a simple data operator. It can perform only simple tasks involving standardized data. It can only function with data that is in a structured and semi-structured format. An RPA automation will break down or crash if it is to deal with unstructured data.

Cognitive Intelligence is similar to a data scientist who makes inferences from different types of data. It reframes data in a decipherable and consumable format so that the management can make informed and sound decisions. Cognitive Intelligence deals with unstructured data by using learning from association and makes relationships and similarities. The tool makes sense of the information it is given by asking a few questions to process the data by taking little or no human intervention.

The contrasting difference in benefits:

RPA usually shows an immediate effect on business, and it is like immediate ROI. Organizations observe their experience almost immediately as RPA performs tasks more precisely, accurately and effectively than humans. Cognitive Intelligence can only complete a task once it has made a complete and comprehensive understanding of human behavior, which takes time. However, Cognitive Intelligence can be seen as an insurmountable benefit to the organization in the long run.

Tactic and Strategies Involved:

Both the systems have a common foundation of automation, but cognitive Intelligence expands beyond the set functional boundaries of automation, which is otherwise unreachable for the abilities of RPA. The additional tools in cognitive automation like Optical Character Recognition, Computer Vision, Virtual Agents and Natural Language Processing (NLP) helps in the interpretation of complex data. It is a dynamic and progressive unit that can extend the nature of the data.

Differences in Processing and Exceptions:

RPA is best suited for tasks that involve predefined logic and straightforward tasks that do not require additional processing or decision making. Contracting to this is Cognitive automation, which is more proficient with dealing with complex data and tasks. Cognitive Intelligence does not seek strict or absolute rules to perform. For example, a Cognitive Intelligent system can interpret the data from a document and sort them into appropriate categories like users, biodata, invoice items and terms.

Robotic Intelligence 

The difference in Scalability:

RPA robots continue to perform the specific task as is instructed for as long as there is no additional charge in the instructions or environment. Cognitive Intelligence makes sense of a situation by using all the senses available to it and trying to perform the task as a human would. RPA is rigid, inflexible and unyielding, while Cognitive Intelligence is dynamic, accommodating, flexible and progressive.

Understanding the continuum:

RPA can help the organization in saving back-office costs and increase productivity with greater precision and accuracy by doing repetitive daily tasks. At the same time, cognitive Intelligence brings context, judgment and adaptability to the table.

An organization seeking to welcome automation into its workforce would benefit from both RPA and Cognitive Intelligence. Let RPA perform all the repetitive and mundane tasks and leave complex systems and unstructured data to cognitive Intelligence. Combining these two will automate your daily tasks and help make complex and sound decisions.

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