The complexity and rigidity of legacy applications in large organizations engender situations where workers need to perform repetitive routines to transfer data from one application to another via their user interfaces, e.g. moving data from a spreadsheet to a Web application or vice-versa. Discovering and automating such routines can help to eliminate tedious work, reduce cycle times, and improve data quality. Advances in Robotic Process Automation (RPA) technology make it possible to automate such routines, but not to discover them in the first place. This paper presents a method to analyse user interactions in order to discover routines that are fully deterministic and thus amenable to automation. The proposed method identifies sequences of actions that are always triggered when a given activation condition holds and such that the parameters of each action can be deterministically derived from data produced by previous actions. To this end, the method combines a technique for compressing a set of sequences into an acyclic automaton, with techniques for rule mining and for discovering data transformations. An initial evaluation shows that the method can discover automatable routines from user interaction logs with acceptable execution times, particularly when there are one-to-one correspondences between parameters of an action and those of previous actions, which is the case of copy-pasting routines.

Discovering automatable routines from user interaction logs

Fortino G.
2019

Abstract

The complexity and rigidity of legacy applications in large organizations engender situations where workers need to perform repetitive routines to transfer data from one application to another via their user interfaces, e.g. moving data from a spreadsheet to a Web application or vice-versa. Discovering and automating such routines can help to eliminate tedious work, reduce cycle times, and improve data quality. Advances in Robotic Process Automation (RPA) technology make it possible to automate such routines, but not to discover them in the first place. This paper presents a method to analyse user interactions in order to discover routines that are fully deterministic and thus amenable to automation. The proposed method identifies sequences of actions that are always triggered when a given activation condition holds and such that the parameters of each action can be deterministically derived from data produced by previous actions. To this end, the method combines a technique for compressing a set of sequences into an acyclic automaton, with techniques for rule mining and for discovering data transformations. An initial evaluation shows that the method can discover automatable routines from user interaction logs with acceptable execution times, particularly when there are one-to-one correspondences between parameters of an action and those of previous actions, which is the case of copy-pasting routines.
978-3-030-26642-4
978-3-030-26643-1
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/299269
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