Boosting the Sales Order Management Process with an Automation

Objectives

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Explain how bots are executed
  • Review the Automation Editor
  • Prepare the Excel file with sales order details
  • Create and edit the automation
  • Map the right order using a loop with conditions
  • Finalize, test, simplify, release, and deploy the automation

Introduction: Boosting Business Processes with Automation

Why use automations? Automations can speed up your process and reduce potential errors related to manually transferring data.

Now that you have mastered the basics of setting up your process, it’s time to simplify your trigger form by reducing the number of input fields.

You will use robotic process automation (RPA) to extract data from an excel file that contains the details of the sales order.

You’ll then learn how to map the inputs and outputs of the different artifacts according to the changes of the process. Lastly, you’ll use the Desktop Agent to run your process.

Note
The Desktop Agent does not work on a Mac device. You will need to use a Windows machine to complete this part of the lesson, or a Mac running a virtual desktop with Windows. Refer to the prerequisites in Unit 1 for more information.
The two modes of Bots: unattended mode and attended mode.

Task automation can run in two ways:

Unattended mode
Bots are working autonomously with human supervision only – there is no human intervention in the part of the process RPA is running.
Attended mode
The attended mode, in which bots will work with humans to assist them, to help the bot.

The Automation Editor

Select each marker to learn more.

The figure shows the areas of the Automation Editor.

The Automation Editor of SAP Build Process Automation is composed of four main parts:

The Toolbar
Can do simple actions such as undo, redo, delete a step, save your automation, or even test it.
The Workflow
Shows you the list of the steps inside your automation.
The Right-side Panel
Adds steps to your automation. You can add activities, data, or different controls to your workflow.
The Console

Access the design and test console to see the different errors, warnings and info of your automation while designing it or while testing it. You also have access to the variables of the automation.

Prepare the Excel File With Sales Order Details

Business Scenario

SAP Build Process Automation has native integration to several Microsoft Office products including Outlook and Excel SDK. In this exercise, you will learn how to use Excel files in your automations.

To design your automation, you will need an Excel file filled with the sales orders data. You have the possibility to create it by yourself using the sample below.

Note

In this exercise, you will create an Excel file containing Sales Order data. You can either create it manually (see task 1) or download the prepared file (see task 2).

Task 1: Alternative 1: Prepare the Excel File With Sales Order Details

Steps

  1. Create an Excel file.

    Use the following cell formats:

    ColumnFormat
    Order NumberText
    Order AmountNumber
    Order DateDate
    Shipping CountryText
    Expected Delivery DateDate
    Order StatusText
    Note
    Ensure that you use the correct format of the cells in the columns, listed above!

    1. Open MS Excel.

    2. Create an excel file with the columns you find in the table above.

    3. Save the file under a name of your wish.

  2. Add data to the columns.

    Use the following data:

    Order NumberOrder AmountOrder DateShipping CountryExpected Delivery DateOrder Status
    PO7991410418.221/21/2022United States of America1/29/2022In Time
    PO7918150935.131/22/2022United Kingdom1/27/2022Urgent
    PO7375313977.821/23/2022United Kingdom2/20/2022In Time
    PO7311755055.41/24/2022United Kingdom3/30/2022In Time
    PO6858429358.41/25/2022United Kingdom2/20/2022In Time
    PO636843739.821/26/2022United Kingdom3/25/2022In Time
    PO6189483574.121/27/2022Germany2/5/2022In Time
    PO3115273993.561/28/2022Germany3/10/2022In Time
    PO2686220887.561/29/2022Germany3/5/2022In Time
    PO8282436955.641/30/2022United States of America3/30/2022In Time

    1. If not done, open the file.

    2. Enter the data from the table above.

    3. Save the file.

Task 2: Alternative 2: Download the File

Steps

  1. Download the file.

    1. Choose the following URL: https://education.hana.ondemand.com/education/pub/mmcp/group/GR_1C5B25FF9CC48BA3/25341A492A1A669A.xlsx?download=1

    2. The file will download to your PC.

Creation and Edition of an Automation

As preparation for the next exercise, watch the following video about creating the Automation.

Create and Edit the Automation

Business Scenario

Now that your excel file is ready, let’s create the automation. For that you will open the process in Process Builder and add a new automation between the Trigger Form and the Approval Form. You will create the automation and edit the automation details and map the Excel file variables with the sales order data. Then you will use a loop to confirm that the result of the inputs look correct.

To learn more about how to create and edit the automation, follow this interactive tutorial.

Task Flow

In the task of this exercise, you will perform the following steps:

  1. Add a New Automation to the process.
  2. Set the Environment Variables of the project.
  3. Add Excel activities.
  4. Perform Excel Data Mapping.
  5. Close the Excel instance.
  6. Add input and output parameters.
  7. Create a variable.

Exercise Options

To start the exercise, choose Start Exercise in the figure below.

A pop-up opens. You have the following options:

  • Choosing Start: the simulation starts. Follow the simulation to learn how to create and edit the automation.
  • Choosing Open PDF Document: a pdf opens. Based on the steps described in this document, you can perform the exercise in your own system landscape.

Mapping the Order Using a Loop with Conditions

Watch the following video, to learn how to map the order by using a loop with conditions:

Map the Order Using a Loop with Conditions

Business Scenario

Excel Data Mapping allows you to transform column-based data from an Excel sheet into datatype that can be used in your automation. The data from the Excel sheet stays the same but the structure becomes a data type structure, making it possible to use throughout your project.

To check if you have correctly mapped the sales order data, you need to loop through the orders and check if you can find yours using the condition, and see if the order number that you received from the trigger is equal to the currentMember of the authors.

Task Flow

In the task of this exercise, you will perform the following steps:

  1. Add a New Automation to the process.
  2. Add a control activity.
  3. Set the variable.
  4. Stop the loop.

Exercise Options

To start the exercise, choose Start Exercise in the figure below.

A pop-up opens. You have the following options:

  • Choosing Start: the simulation starts. Follow the simulation to learn how to map the order using a loop with conditions.
  • Choosing Open PDF Document: a pdf opens

Finalize, Test, and Simplify the Automation

Business Scenario

At the end of your automation creation process, there are some last steps to fulfill. First, you have to create output parameters and connect them with the endpoint of the automation. If everything has been set up, you can run a test. After successful testing, to simplify the start form, you can delete all redundant information. Release your process project that finally can be deployed.

Exercise Options

To start the exercise, choose Start Exercise in the figure below.

A pop-up opens. You have the following options:

  • Choosing Start: the simulation starts. Follow the simulation to learn how to finalize, test, and simplify the automation.
  • Choosing Open PDF Document: a pdf opens. Based on the steps described in this document, you can perform the exercise in your own system landscape.

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