Top 25 free RPA tools
This article analyzes the top 25 free RPA tools from a business user perspective. Know how they can benefit you and what it requires to use them
RPA is a booming industry
Robot Process Automation, also known as RPA is one of the most booming software domains on the planet.
The reasons are apparent. Robot process automation can help you produce more at a higher level of quality and removes the tasks that your or your colleges dislike most; that is, the manual keying in data in multiple systems.
The price of working with RPA
But everything comes with a price. According to Gartner an average RPA installation cost 200.000 USD, and each new process that you create cost on average 25.000 USD. So automation comes with a price.
So it is obvious that many people look for a cheaper or even a free RPA solution. But do such solutions exist, and are they really free?
This is what we explore in this article. We start by looking into the free part. Because everything comes with a price, Free might just mean that you get the software for free and that alone does not give you a live and running RPA solution. It takes more than that.
Our main focus of this article is to exploit two areas. Are the tools truly free, and can a business person use them without coding skills?
What makes a free RPA tool great for your business?
You would want your RPA solution to be cloud-based for two reasons.
Firstly because of the cost – it is cheaper to run.
Secondly, a cloud-based solution means that it can work out of the box without having code or configure a new tool.
If a tool requires coding or coding skills to use, then it means that a technical person must help you if you are a business person. This drives up costs and makes it more difficult for you to get started.
Some tools are easy to work with once they are set up. But many require integration to APIs and modifications of your existing IT to get started. If this is the case, then it will drive up the barriers to getting started for you.
If you are a business person, you would like the system to be pre-loaded with as many modules as possible. This would make it easier for you to build solutions without code that fits your automation needs.
The last thing that you should focus on is the running cost of the solution. The more complex the setup you have, the more impact it will have on your current IT. Complexity will drive up costs because it will make it more expensive to run and maintain the IT that you have today. So you would want as simple and as little impact from a running cost perspective.
Cognifirm can be run and implemented without code or tech skills. There is a forever free version available.
Cognifirm works in the browser, so you can only use the tool for browser-based integrations. Also, it is not possible to create advanced business logic as it is possible in other RPA platforms.
Cognifirm is a very different tool compared to the other RPA tools that you might know. It is a browser plug-in, and it means that the processes that you optimate are run in the user’s browser.
This concept gives you a new set of process optimation options. First of all, it makes it easier and cheaper to create new processes because the end-users can do so themself.
Because it is cloud-based also means that it is cheaper to run and maintain. There is a forever free version available.
The downside of this concept is that there is a limit to how advanced and complex processes you can create using a browser-based tool
Install free addon / plug-in
Spans across many technology platforms.
The free use is limited to non-commercial use, and the code is no longer open source.
Automagica is a Belgium company that started out as a free open source product where you could download the code for free on Github. But this has changed now.
Automagica is free for non-commercial use. So it is an excellent choice if you are an individual looking to build your own projects.
You need to install a local run version of the software, and it runs on Phyton, so it requires knowledge of code to run this software.
It can be used in many tech scenarios such as desktop automation, Microsoft Office automation, and business app automation, and for this reason it qualifies a one of the top 25 free RPA tools
Great tool for testing and can be highly configured
It cannot be used as a tool for automation as a business person.
Automai is primary a test automation tool that is used by IT professionals. It is a program that you install on a server.
It is possible to both get a free trial and a free version of the software. The price for a license starts at $2500
It specializes in testing graphical user interfaces. It is also used to perform load testing.
This setup means that it is not possible for a business person to run Automai without extensive involvement of your IT department.
4. Automation Anywhere – Community Edition
The community edition is free and features packed
You need to have access to developer resources to use the software.
Automation Anywhere is one of the leading RPA companies in the world. Their regular software is not available for free, but they offer a community edition that is free to use. It does, however, require that you are a small business, student or developer.
The software requires local installation. There is also a cloud version available, and the price for this 750 USD per month.
The tools require coding and understanding of API to get the system up and running. So if you are a business person, you would need to involve your IT department to get up and running and for the maintenance of the system
5. Robot Framework
Very configurable and can integrate into most systems
Requires tech knowledge to use the system
Robot frameworks is a classic RPA tool and a natural element of the Top 25 free RPA tool in the world
Robot Framework was originally developed by software engineers in 2005 at Nokia to automate their test tasks.
The tool has then evolved to become an open-source tool can is often used for general robotics tasks. One of its greatest strengths is its ability to integrate with many other tools, and that makes it great for complex integration tasks.
However, as a business user, you need to hook up with engineers to get the most out of the tool as it is very technical in this nature.
Highly configurable, if you know how to code
Requires technical skills to use the tool.
TagUI is a truly open-source program, so there is no license cost. The tool focus on desktop, web, and mouse automation.
It is a tool that you install locally, so it recures that you have some coding experience to get the tool fully operational. It works by you creating command lines that execute an action. So this makes it especially suitable for testing web applications.
Free for individual use
Not a cloud based solution
Robocorp is free to use for individuals and small businesses. The limit is five users, and the price starts at 200 USD per month for setups above five users.
The solution has many predefined use cases. They have split the solution into two areas assistant that runs an employee’s desktop and process automation tools that execute processes as a bulk operation.
The free version requires that you install the code locally, and the code can be found for free on Github. The setup means that it does require coding skill and that you run and maintain the solution yourself.
Automate new tasks without code
Require local installment
Taskt is an open-source tool that runs on the -net framework, and as such, it requires that it must be run on your side and not in the cloud.
It also means that it requires coding skills to implement the tool.
However, running the tool does not require code. You use the tool to record a user’s task and then replicate it as automation. This is managed in a what you see is what you get an editor.
9. Open RPA
Great tech that gives you lots of options
It requires tech insights to work with the software
Open RPA is a truly free RPA tool. It is built on an open-source platform. It is known to easy to use because of its drag and drop interface. It runs on a microservice architecture.
You need to install a version of the software on a server, and you need to have tech capabilities to build automatons for your business. So as a non-tech person, you will be dependent on others to do this for you.
Costly to design and maintain
Robin stands out in this list of the top 25 free RPA tools. Because it is not a tool but a programming language that can be used to create RPA robots, so this concept means that a business can build your own specially designed software robots.
You should consider this approach for one of two reasons if you know that your requirement is so unique that no standard solution could solve it. Or if you need to be 100% in control over how your processes are designed and build.
11. Workfusion express
A technologically advanced solution.
The paid version is costly to integrate.
Workfusuion is a system that is designed to integrate major ERP systems such as SAP, Oracle, and Citrix.
They aim at being a technology leader and has a lot of focus on AI. It also means that it is not a free product to use or to operate.
The tool is not free as such, but we have included them on this list of the top 25 free RPA tools because they have an “Express starter” product. It is a freemium product for individuals, so you can use it to get a sense of what the tool is capable of.
Cloud and browser based
Not free to use
Ontrack is a web browser that can be used to automate tasks for you.
The smart part of using a web browser as your RPA tool is that this means that you do not have to do any tech integration such as APIs. Everything is done in the browser for you.
The solution is not truly free. You can try it for free and then pay 49 USD per month, but we still thinks it is qualified to be among the top 25 free RPA tools.
A great cloudbased enterprise soltion
Not a free product
Pega is a cloud-based robotics solution that is a result of pegas’s 30 years of IT development work.
Pega is not free, but they do offer 30 days free trial if you are interested in trying out the software. They also have a community edition that is free for a longer period of time. But by the end of the day, you will end up paying for the solution since this is a full-scale enterprise product.
Great for testing
It only works on Windows-based applications
Autohotkey is an open-source programming language that is designed for Microsoft Windows. The original purpose was to automate macros for windows shortcuts. The primary focus was on application testing.
However, the application has not evolved into a broader user, and that means that the tool is now capable of automating user processes. It does require some knowledge of how a code works to be able to create RPA processes with the tool.
It is free to use
Require tech skills
Seleniumbase is an open-source framework, meaning it is free to use.
The tool specializes in web automation, end-to-end testing, and website tours. So in a way, it is a hybrid between a test automation tool and an RPA framework.
It is based on Phyton and requires that you know how to code the scripts you would like to execute.
Free and open-source
Require tech skills
Roro is another open-source RPA framework that is available on GitHub. What makes Roro special is that it can be coded in C# and not Phyton as many of the other open-source RPA frameworks use.
It is free to use but will require that you have access to developers to do the actual configuration for you
So if you tech guys have C# knowledge, this might be a tool that you could look at.
Integration into 2000 apps out of the box
Limited business logics compared to a conventional RPA tool
Many would probably not regard Zapier as a process automation tool, but we have chosen to have the platform on the list too. The platform does offer the ability to automate simple system flows between more than 2000 different systems. So it can supplement many of the tasks that you might else have considers to automate with a conventional RPA tool.
Also, Zapier is quite easy to work with, even for a non-tech person, and it is also known for its robustness in how it processes data.
Require tech skills
It is free to use
UnRpa is open-source software that you will have to install and host locally. You can download the code for free from the GitHub link in this article.
The software is used for file extractions and file management. So mostly with a tech infrastructure in mind.
It does require coding skills for UnRpa, so as a business person, you would have to involve IT competencies to make it work for you.
No free version available
Appian is a low-cost RPA vendor that specializes in workflow optimation and user journeys.
Appian is not free, but you can sign up for a trial version that allows you to use a free trial application.
The fact that it is not free should disqualify it from this list of top 25 free RPA tools. However, they are strong at one point: that is the ease of use, and they are cloud-based. This means that you can configure the application without coding requirements skills, and that is a great plus for the product.
20. Nice RPA
Strong focus on data
Implementation cost will be higher than many other tools
Nice is on the list of top 25 free RPA tools for obvious reasons.
You can download and run NICE RPA for free, so it can be a truly free solution for you. The software can either run on the cloud or on your local side.
Some RPA tools focus on processer; with NICE the focus is on data and how to migrate and distribute it.
They are especially focused on the data analytics side of RPA and let you as a user make more qualified decisions based upon data that the system collects.
You will most likely have to be very technical skilled to start using NICE RPA on your own. The tool is so complex that it will take an experienced tech person to install it on your site, even for the cloud version. So the software might be free, but it will cost you to install the solution on the implementation side.
21. Help Systems
A true RPA process tool designed to automate business flows.
Not a free tool
Unlike many of the other tools on this list, Help systems have been designed as an RPA tool from the start and not as a test automation tool.
It means that the core architecture is designed around processing flows between multiple systems.
A core element is a graphical user interface that makes it easier to create flows, and you can often do so without code. However, the initial system integration do requirer development to make the system work.
Help is also known for its great analytics features.
Help is not free to use, but they do offer a free trial.
Focus on Windows applicatons
Too technical for a non-tech person
The purpose of Winautomation is to automate applications that run on Windows.
Winautomation offers a 30-day free trial, and then prices start at 89 USD per month. So it is not really free, but we have included it in the list of the top 25 free RAP tools because of its windows focus. There are not many RPA tools that have a unique focus on Windows. So in case, this is what you specifically need,s then Winautomation could be a great choice for you, even if it is not free,
You can build your flows as drag and drop components. But it is a very technical tool, and a not tech person will probably have issues working with the tool.
23. UI Path
Read more: Uipath.com
The industry leader
Not really free to use
UIpath is among the leaders n the RPA industry; their tool can be used to automate any work area or web application. You can choose to install the solution locally or to run it as a cloud solution. It is also known to be able to integrate with systems that run on a variety of technology platforms such as .net, java SAP, and many more.
UI path has a free version that is limited to one person and one computer. So, in reality, this is only valid for a developer or if you want to investigate how their solution runs. Regular licenses start at 2000 USD per year, and on top of that, you should expect to pay extra for usage and configurations.
24. RPA for Python
It is free to use.
Require coding skills
RPA for Phyton is not an application but a coding framework. This means that anyone with Phyton coding experience can use this tool and create their own RPA solutions.
The code you use to do so is open-source. So it is developed and maintained by a community of developers that lets you use the code for free. You can download it from their Github account.
This means that you would need to know how to code to use this to create robotics solutions for your business.
25. Agros Labs
Easy to configure
Not free to use
Some of the biggest companies in the world use Argos labs software, such as Toyota and SK Telecom.
It is not cloud-based but runs as a windows file that you must host on a server to run.
They pride themself on not having to code the software to make it run, so it can be deployed fast without any IT department involvement.
So the solution is not free to use, but you can use it as a business person to configure new automation flows without code.
Did you find your favorite among the top 25 free RPA tools?
We hoped you enjoyed reading about the top 25 free RPA tools in this article. Robotics is a booming area, and as you can see, there are lots of tools that can help you get started. Many are free or almost free. On top of that, many are also easy to implement. So the road to success with RPA has never been easier.