A hot topic among all our clients that have reached a certain scale is about automating the work done in the CoE. This is also a very important topic for Blue Prism, and we are driving our product roadmap in this area with functionality like Capture, ALM, APIs to Blue Prism, improved scheduling etc. But as the product historically has lacked needed functionality, we see a lot of creativity in our customer base in automating the Automation lifecycle with either partner products, or by building their own functions.
Capture - Automate the PDD creation process and get a BP process skeleton.
No products are perfect, but I hear from many customers that they find Capture very useful. It is very common to use it the idea evaluation phase. Give Capture to your business users and let them record their work. You will save a lot of time by getting a documentation to evaluate, instead of sitting with them, asking them how they work and then document.
I also hear from many customers that they have started to use it for the full discovery process, creating the PDD, and exporting it to Blue Prism.
An area where we see a lot of development is about automating the code-review. In our ROM we do propose a Design Authority (DA) to review and make sure that You don´t put low-quality automations in production, and that You re-use objects You already have built. The people in the DA are normally the most experienced architects and developers, so You don’t want to use their time for repetitive task. Enter, the automatic code-reviewer.
There are many options on how to do this, and if You search our Digital Exchange, you will find many great tools from partners. I would also like to promote the free asset Delivered by Blue Prism in partnership with Nordea Bank, the Automated Reviewer or Digital DA, who automates the reviewing of Blue Prism Automations using native functionality within the product.
Apart from improving quality to a lower cost You also show Your stakeholders that You “eat your own medicine” and are using digital workers in your own internal work.
This is a functionality that many are waiting for in Blue Prism, and it is on the roadmap. Many customers have focused on this topic, and acquired a partner product, or built something themselves.
The main advantages are cost savings for operations of Blue Prism by more efficient use of licenses, and less time on operating and maintaining schedules. And of course, the ability to schedule by priority and SLAs so the digital workforce always delivers on promise.
There are a couple of partner products available on Digital Exchange, and at least one asset that is free of charge, the Dynamic resource manager.
Automatic deployment and test
Another area where our customers are automating the work in the CoE is around deployment of automations, from development to test and production. Many are using digital workers for this, while others have integrated Blue Prism with other devops tools. I have also heard a lot of discussions around automating the test of automations, especially in combination with upgrades and browser-migrations. But so far I have only participated in discussions, not really seen anything realized yet.