10 Obstacles When Automating Telecommunications and Technology Vendor Portals

To run unattended automations successfully, at scale, on telcommunications and technology vendor web portals you’ll need to ensure you have scalable solutions for the following:

  1. Log-Ins and Input Values

The processes to automate on vendor portals will likely be behind login credentials. To automate processes behind logins make sure your login credentials are organized in a secure database and your bots can securely access the credentials necessary to complete your unattended automations. You’ll also need to identify inaccurate login credentials in real-time to halt auto reattempts and avoid accidental locking of login credentials. Finally, you’ll have to ensure your Input Values (i.e. account numbers, other IDs, schedules, etc.) are accurate and organized in a way that directly relates to your credentials.

  1. Two-Factor Authentication

Vendor web portals may require two-factor authentication when logging in from a new or unrecognized web browser. In addition, this step can be triggered at the discretion of a vendor portal at any time. You’ll need a solution to avoid and resolve two-factor authentication.

  1. Captchas

More and more vendor portals are requiring you to solve captchas before granting access. You’ll need a solution to avoid or solve captchas.

  1. IP Blacklisting

Vendor portals may blacklist critical IP addresses if you are accessing them too fast, too frequently, or concurrently. You’ll need a solution to ensure you do not trigger IP blacklisting.

  1. Scheduling

You’ll need a flexible solution to schedule the frequency of bot attempts and reattempts (for failed or non-fresh data) for unattended automations.

  1. Schedule-and-Return

Some scenarios will require you to first initiate your automation and then return within a defined time frame to complete it. You’ll need a flexible solution to manage these multi-step, hierarchical automations.

  1. A/B Testing

Vendor portals may have multiple versions of their site depending on region, customer type, and/or A/B testing. To support this common scenario at scale you will have to build and support multiple versions of your bot and ensure your bots are intelligent enough to identify and remember the correct version of the applicable vendor portal.

  1. Intermittent Downtime, Time-Outs, and Latency

Vendor portals can be unstable so your bots will need to be equipped to manage instability to ensure you can complete your unattended automations successfully. This means not aborting unattended automations too early and automatically reattempting others at a later time. In some instances, it may take several attempts over multiple hours before an automation completes successfully on a vendor portal. You’ll need a solution to carefully manage this vendor portal instability.

  1. New Front End Frameworks and Elements

Vendor portals evolve and so do front-end frameworks, web libraries and user interface widgets. Your bots should be able to navigate frameworks such as AngularJS and ReactJS and web elements such as modals and hidden fields. In addition, your bots should evolve to account for new frameworks and web components as they are introduced. In the world of traditional bots, this may mean building a new bot with each change.

  1. Rogue Scripts, Insecure Connections, and Mixed Content

Some vendor portals include rogue scripts that load continuously or trigger page timeouts. Other portals include insecure connections or content, which result in modern browsers rejecting all or part of the page. You’ll need a solution to manage through these obstacles.

About Weeldi

Headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area, Weeldi enables companies of any size or technical ability to stably automate processes on the web, at scale, through its web service API or user interface — with no coding required.

To learn more, please visit Weeldi. https://www.weeldi.com/

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