SINEM BATMACA | TEST SPECIALIST
In the field of information systems, finding answers to “Which processes should be automated in enterprises?” and “How much of these processes should be done by people?” questions has been an ongoing problem to be solved for a long time.
Developments in artificial intelligence, data science and machine learning algorithms have added a new dimension into this problem. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is one of these developments.
The demand for these systems is increasing, as businesses are witnessed by RPA systems to improve business performance.
RPA is considered as a software which has a high impact on return on investment (ROI).
For this reason, many new RPA servers entered the market in the last 3 years (Aalst et al., 2018). There are many RPA vendors such as UiPath, BluePrism, AutomationAnywhere are market leaders, AutomationEdge, Kryon Systems.
Table: Comparison of market leader RPA vendors (based on Issac et al., 2018; Morison,2019)
Graph: Google Trend Popularity of RPA Platforms
UiPath is one of the most widely used RPA servers and has been developed with the .NET framework. The Community Edition version is available for free download.
- Can be used without writing code; has a user-oriented interface
- .NET and C # codes can be integrated
- Instead of focusing on code writing; allows focusing on workflow setup and process optimization
- There are comprehensive community forum sites that support users.
One of the most valuable features of the software is a community that supports it. The network around the UiPath is amazing.
UiPath Studio, UiPat Robot and UiPath Orchestrator are 3 main products of RPA platform.
UiPath Studio is an advanced tool that allows users to design automation processes in a visual way through diagrams. UiPath Robot then executes those processes either unattended (without human supervision) or attended (with a human’s action triggering the process).
The UiPath Studio home page is as shown in the illustration. Processes may be defined as “Sequence” or “Flowchart”.
The Sequence option is ideal if the process is progressing in a sequential flow.
Flowcharts are ideal in case of multiple branching and condition in the process and help to create a complex workflow.
UiPath has over 300 activities. In addition to the existing packages, packages like Excel, Mail, PDF can also be downloaded from the “Packages” section.
Sequences and flow charts are created in the workspace. Variables can be created using the Variables Pane or Properties Pane, and values can be saved.
In the Properties pane, you can assign values to variables in the workflow. Variables can be created by pressing Ctrl + K.
Recording and Playback
UiPath has recording and playback features. This feature automates the processes recorded by humans. There are 4 types of recordings in UiPath:
- Basic Recording
- Desktop Recording
- Web Recording
- Citrix Recording
Screen Scraping and Data Scraping
With the scraping process, data is taken from a web page or an application.
“Screen Scraping” is used to extract data from applications or web pages.
“Data Scraping” is the process of scaping repetitive data from any structured table. Data Scraping Wizard helps in data scaping.
UI Explorer provides detailed information about user interface components and feature selectors.
Run, Debug ve Breakpoints
Run is used to run the workflow in UiPath environment.
Debug is used to analyse the workflows step-by-step.
Break Point is used to pause the debugging at a particular step.
Slow step is used to execute the workflow little slower.
The sequence will open the browser, go to google.com, search weather and get the weather value.
The example flowchart will open the browser, go to google.com, search weather, get the weather value and close to tab.
1.van der Aalst, Wil M. P.; Bichler, Martin; and Heinzl, Armin (2018) “Robotic Process Automation,” Business & Information Systems Engineering: Vol. 60: Iss. 4, 269-272.
Available at: https://aisel.aisnet.org/bise/vol60/iss4/1
- Issac R., Muni R., Desai K. (2018), “Delineated Analysis of Robotic Process Automation Tools.”, 2018 Second International Conference on Advances in Electronics Computers and Communications (ICAECC)
- Morrison, M. (2019), “Risk Management in Automation of the Accounting Process”, In: Linsley P., Shrives P., Wieczorek-Kosmala M. (eds) Multiple Perspectives in Risk and Risk Management, Springer Proceedings in Business and Economics, Springer, Cham