The attention to the keyword « RPA (Robotic Process Automation) » has increased. Occasions that customers ask me about RPA are also increasing.
Meanwhile, we conducted a verification on combining BPM system and RPA tool in collaboration with RPA Technologies Inc. In this article, I will introduce one method of combining a BPM system and RPA tool which is obtained from the verification.
The RPA tool used in this article is »BasicRobo! », and the BPM System is « Questetra BPM Suite ».
BPM System and RPA Tool
I will briefly describe the role of BPM system and RPA tool.
A BPM system provides a framework where the relationship among work steps existing in the entire business is clarified so that work progress according it smoothly. Some of the work steps are as complicated as only humans can handle, others are simple such as repeating of copy and paste. The RPA is a tool that automates the step to perform simple processing that can be processed even if it is not a human among multiple work steps.
In other words, the BPM system is responsible for organizing and managing the entire work consisting of multiple steps, and the RPA tool is responsible for the automatable range in each step.。
Automation of System Account Issuance Operation
The target operation of the verification on the combination of BPM system and RPA tool that conducted in collaboration with RPA Technologies Inc. was system account issuance upon joining of a new employee.
The operation of system account issuance upon joining of a new employee is as the following.
- A trainer for new employee makes a request for issuance of a system account for the newcomer. The superior (Department manager) gives an approval to it.
- In the IT department, an account is issued based on the contents of the request.
- The newcomer confirms that he or she can log in to the issued account.
I made this flow of operation into a diagram. This is a so-called Workflow Diagram. And you may understand who performs what in which order, by gazing on it.
This Workflow Diagram is created with « Questetra BPM Suite », a cloud-based BPM system.
In this verification, we considered about automating the « account issuance » step of the IT system department using the RPA tool. When this automation is realized, the RPA tool (robot) will act on behalf of staffs in the IT system department concerning this work, so they will not be bothered anymore.
How to Combine BPM System with RPA Tool
Automate the process that humans migrate data to RPA tool
First, build up a framework of the system account issuance operation for newcomers on the cloud-based BPM system « Questetra BPM Suite », set up management on each work step or automating of data transactions after the request has made. Although I omitted the details of the settings, things as the following will be possible when you finish setting of « Questetra BPM Suite ».
- An input form screen of each work step is displayed so that you can enter relevant information such as Requesting or Approval.
- When inputting to the form screen of each work step is finished, the next step will be allocated to the next personnel.
- The progress of each operation become visible. For example, you can see to which step the request has reached in one day after it is made.
In the implementation of RPA tool to automate the « Issue an account » part of IT system dept in this series of operation, the launching of the tool is performed by staffs of the IT system dept.
To put it more concretely, after the « Account creation approval » Step of the department manager has been processed, the request for « Account creation » moves to the Step of IT system dept. Staffs of the IT system department, watching the Operating screen of the « Account creation » Step, migrate the necessary information for account creation to the RPA tool which creates accounts automatically.
Passing information to RPA tool by HTTP from BPM system
In this verification, we aimed automation for the part where humans passing information to RPA tool, by connecting BPM system with RPA tool. The mechanism of cooperation between BPM system and RPA tool is built in the form of sending HTTP request from BPM system to RPA tool for activating the robot.
Since « Questetra BPM Suite », the BPM system, has a feature of sending HTTP request, we use the feature to send a request necessary to automatically activate the RPA tool « BasicRobo! ».
When the RPA tool « BasicRobo! » receives an HTTP request, it reads the information contained in it, opens the user registration screen of, for example, Salesforce, and performs user registration processing.
By now, I have described the verification concerning cooperation between a BPM system and RPA tool (Basic Robo!). Although I didn’t mention the detailed settings etc in this description for you to understand the overall outline, I would like to introduce them when I get the chance. (It became a long article only by outline explanation …)
That’s it, for today!