It's been a busy month for the UiPath product team, and we have lots of exciting new capabilities to highlight. Firstly, earlier this month we launched the Public Preview of the UiPath Enterprise Cloud Platform. This is a true Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) offering of our platform beginning with Orchestrator. It allows you to focus on your automation projects and leave the IT to us. You can learn more about this milestone achieved in the “automation first” era and sign-up today for the public preview if you haven’t done so already.
Secondly, we have some exciting updates in our AI capabilities. At UiPath, we focus on pragmatic AI, or using AI to solve specific customer problems. Available later this week in Public Preview is our new UiPath Invoice and Receipt AI, developed by UiPath’s world class ML and AI team. It utilizes a ‘templateless’ approach to processing invoices and receipts. This means that our AI can automatically determine the location of critical information that needs to be extracted from the document, even if the format changes. This new AI game-changer, available directly from the UiPath Studio, will enable your organization to streamline your accounts payable and expense management process with AI. You can learn a lot more about this AI feature here.
This week we also released our June Platform Preview and there are many new capabilities. A few key highlights include:
Improved debugging in Studio
A complex automation project relies as much on the debugging experience, to make sure that everything runs smoothly as on the features and activities available in Studio.
Beginning in 2018.4 we have been hard at work on a multi-release plan to improve the overall debugging experience. It considered the feedback received from our users over time, as well as new capabilities being added into Studio.
In this release we are introducing the Breakpoints Panel – you can now acquire more insight during execution, to figure out whether an automation is working as expected. You can manage all the breakpoints including conditional ones, enable or disable them, see the activity names wherever they are set, and their condition corresponding to expressions. The panel also allows you to edit expressions and add new ones to simple breakpoints.
When debugging your code, you can do so up to a certain point in your workflow, allowing you increased productivity right from the Design screen, without having to go into Execute. You can also choose to Step out of a container and continue from the next activity, one level above. This option can now be easily located in the ribbon.
Enhanced productivity and extensibility in Studio
Our global community of developers has frequently requested support for C# in addition to Visual Basic (VB) in automation workflows. Now at the time you create a new process you can choose between C# and VB as language default for that project. This is the first introduction of this major new feature and it is in experimental form; we highly encourage you to test it out and post your feedback on our Forum.
Another capability that will have a huge impact on developer productivity is our new Command Palette that allows you access to quick navigation, adding activities on-the-fly and other quick commands. Check out the new universal search that allows you to find results in all areas of your workflow (Activities, Variables, Arguments, Selectors, etc.), clearly delimited in tabs. You can easily jump directly to one activity, or, from the same menu, add an activity to your workflow.
Often a sophisticated business process is built by chaining together a series of linked sub-processes. E.g., the primary process of employee onboarding, might include sub-processes such as creation of an employee email id, creation of an HR portal account, etc. These sub-processes can both run standalone and be included in a complex workflow.
The Invoke Process Activity now supports this scenario and allows linking standalone processes within a primary process. You can start or stop the execution of an individual process chained in the primary process. This capability has three key benefits. Firstly, it simplifies reusability as the linked processes can be used in multiple workflows. Secondly, a user can flexibly run an individual process separately. Thirdly, it simplifies version control as the primary process always automatically runs on the latest version of the linked Orchestrator process.
With this release, we have also improved the most used Studio activity - “Assign”. These improvements were driven directly by our community of developers and reduce development time and improve the user experience.
There is no more need to rename activities individually to spot an error at the runtime, the Multiple Assign activity will throw customized error messages highlighting the problem area in the Assign field.
You can now conveniently add an elaborate activity description in the workflow pane and distinctly identify fields with the enhanced UI experience.
The availability of products or services in local languages for regional users improves ease-of-use and enhances efficiency. The 2019 Fast Track version of the UiPath Platform now supports an additional language — Simplified Chinese — starting this week.
Expanded automation ecosystem
UiPath integrates with leading technology providers and builds joint solutions providing a state-of-art automation solution. This month, we are introducing the following:
Microsoft Dynamics 365 integration
Automate more with Microsoft Dynamics 365 with native integration as a set of Studio Activities. This allows you to go beyond UI based automation as the activities use direct API access. This simplifies creation, update, and retrieval of entity data including things like opportunity status.
Google Suite integration
Building on our existing Google Suite activity now, your robots can perform tasks such as creating a new document, inserting or replacing text, searching for text in a document, and bulk update of Google Docs documents.
The Orchestrator Mobile app has been a great hit with customers, and we continue to improve it based on your feedback.
Besides starting a job, this app now allows you to schedule a job directly from your mobile device by specifying the same details as valid in the web-version of Orchestrator. Please note that the newly created schedules are enabled by default. We have implemented authentication changes to support login to Cloud Platform accounts.
Towards the end of May, we launched the UiPath RPA Community Blog. Within a couple of weeks, we covered various topics ranging from using UiPath on a Mac, to finding an apartment with a robot to best practices for building a custom activity.
Have an idea you want to share with the UiPath world? Contribute here!
We hope you enjoy using the new capabilities delivered this month and let that stream of feedback keep flowing.
To learn more about these features and others this month see the release notes.
Sign-up today for the UiPath Insider Preview Program to try these and other features.
Chief Product Officer (CPO), UiPath