Top 4 Tasks to Automate with Web Automation
You may have already heard about automation as a leading software trend for businesses in recent years. However, it can be hard to spot which workflows benefit most from automation. To save you the headache, we’ve created this post to find out if web automation is the right fit for you.
So, what is web automation?
Web automation is when software applications (sometimes called bots) perform actions similar to what users would do within an operating system or internet browser. Automation bots act according to scripts. You can create a script by capturing user actions and defining a specific pattern. Otherwise, automation bots can work based on “if this, then that” logic. This means that a particular action triggers a new step in an automated workflow.
This way, software robots help to automate repetitive tasks in Windows or macOS apps and web browsers.
You can learn more on the subject by reading the Beginner’s In-Depth Guide to Desktop Automation.
Automation for those who don’t like to read long articles
If you can’t wait to get started with automation, don’t worry about reading to the end. Here is a short overview of WinTask automation solutions that are suitable for workflows of any size and complexity.
- Wintask Developer. This one is our flagship — full-featured Windows and web task automation. It comes with web automation, database and Excel data extraction, image and character recognition, and a Macro Reader. The latter tool records your actions and allows WinTask to repeat them for you.
- RunTime. Runtime helps you run automation scripts created in WinTask on secondary machines with just a .rob file (script). With RunTime, you don’t need to worry about compatibility with every PC. When you have one PC with WinTask installed, any other PC can ensure functionality by utilizing WinTask scripts.
- WinTask Pro. It can create standalone .exe applications that can be run on an unlimited number of machines. This means you don’t need WinTask or RunTime installed, just a .exe app with your automation ready to rock.
Don’t hesitate to start your 30-day free trial today. See for yourself how WinTask automation can benefit your business.
Industry automation in action
Here is a brief list of industries where automation established itself as a disruptive force in business:
- Administration and Government
- Air Transportation
- Railway Transportation
- Heavy Industries
Among these eight industries, billions of dollars are saved annually by accelerating business processes, freeing up working time, and ensuring compliance with automation. Along with them, you can add HR, sales, real estate, and insurance as these service industries are taking giant strides towards implementing routine task automation.
In almost every industry, a workforce army performs 5–10 routine processes day after day. A few years ago, McKinsey calculated that activities most suitable for automation were worth $2.7 trillion in wages. Couple this with the typical operational bottlenecks that the usual production or sales process experiences from time to time and you begin to understand why businesses are investing so heavily in automation.
Whatever industry you’re involved in, there is a set of relevant use cases for it. Let’s walk through them together.
1. Web browser automation
A bot can automatically reproduce any series of actions in a browser that a person performs. This includes entering information, searching, clicking, logging in, and downloading data and images.
Typical use cases for browser automation cover:
- Collect data from multiple websites for further analysis
- Bypass CAPTCHAs to enter websites and register accounts
- Monitor website pages to ensure they are up and running
- Download specific website content like text or images
- Fill out and submit web forms etc.
2. Data scraping & extraction
Today, all business data is stored using mediums such as CRM systems, Excel and Google spreadsheets, SQL databases, and PDF documents and forms. Most automated operations today are reduced to transferring data from one medium to another. Here is the most common set of processes that you can easily automate:
- Export document data and import it to a CRM, ERP, etc. This includes sensitive contract information, invoices, order forms, and other business documents.
- Populate documents and forms with information from Excel, Google Spreadsheet, or an SQL database. Bots can instantly generate customer documents like invoices, patient intake forms, applications, etc., eliminate manual errors, and ensure compliance.
- Read emails searching for specific words that trigger a sequence of automated actions. Suppose an HR manager receives an email containing attachments with “cv” or “resume” in their titles. In that case, they will be automatically transferred to the “Applicants” folder in Google Drive.
3. File transfer
File transfers are probably the most obvious use case for automation. Transferring files between systems isn’t just about sending information. This also includes non-trivial processes that are often time-consuming and highly automated:
- Extract files from mediums such as websites, emails, CRM and ERP systems, etc.
- Re-name files or convert them from one format to another if necessary
- Compress, archive, password-protect files
- Save to FTP, CRM, cloud, or hard drive
4. Custom workflows with Windows GUI automation
GUI stands for the graphical user interface. Automation services like WinTask can automate any workflow with any application in Windows. Because WinTask can mimic a user’s actions and mouse clicks, it can operate any application involving a repetitive sequence of steps.
There are hundreds of available use cases here, these include:
- Automatically shutting down a computer and changing user accounts
- Automatically launching programs for administration and system management
- Complex processes such as sending mail, network messages, and service commands to servers based on a time or any other system triggers
When is the best time to implement automation?
Of course, it’s never too late. We have a story about how WinTask once successfully helped a utility company in the US implement automation to get through a hurricane. But why wait for a storm if you can prepare your business for the challenges of the future now?
WinTask is here to help. Contact us today to get a free consultation and personalized demo. We’re always eager to help those who are just starting their automation journey.
This article has initially been published by Wintask as a guest post in Geek Tech Magazine.
Desktop automation software that saves you time and increases your productivity by enabling you to automate repetitive tasks.