RPA vendor Blue Prism outlines vision, product refresh at Blue Prism World

Blue Prism kicked off the first day of their three day virtual event by articulating their view of where software robotics is headed, and unveiling the new Blue Prism v7.

Robotics Process Automation [RPA] vendor Blue Prism kicked off their virtualized Blue Prism World 2021 event on Tuesday by articulating their vision of automation, and why customers need intelligent automation to achieve a better future. The second day of the three-day event will discuss real world examples, while the final day is all about execution to optimize end-to-end processes everywhere. At the same time, the company announced Blue Prism v7, the new version of their flagship offering, highlighting its advances in scalability, extensibility and usability.

“I think it’s a very exciting time in automation,” said Jason Kingdon, Blue Prism’s Chairman and CEO. “Morgan Stanley has called the market a $1.3 trillion opportunity, which for a brand new market is just a staggering sum.”

Kingdon said that because the technology is relatively new, customers haven’t really come to grips with how to best use it.

“Customers are still figuring out how to scale the technology,” he indicated. “Scale here means the strategic use of the technology. We believe any business process can be automated today. Scale involves end-to-end process automation. It’s about returns, control, and use of data.”

This also requires both making the technology easier to use, and making it easier for non-technologists to use.

“Over the next three to five years, we see the technology as no longer being the barrier, and as actually reaching out to non-technologists,” Kingdon said. “We already have a democratization component associated with the technology being distributed to new consumers, and which dispels the technical issues in delivering automation. We address client pain points with a very targeted enterprise end-to-end process of automation. The biggest benefit is predictability. If you know costs, you control QoS, and can provide predictability in how you service an end client.”

Kingdon noted that Blue Prism had doubled their R&D this year, which has assisted in the release of eight new products within their platform, including Blue Prism Decipher, which quickly and accurately extracts and organizes structured and semi-structured data from business documents, and Blue Prism Capture, which  autogenerates all key components necessary to form a process definition document, reducing time to automate by up to 25%. These new automations are all included in the customer license, and can be downloaded from the Blue Prism portal. The company has also extended their single license model.

“We see that in line with the ambition of the clients,” Kingdon said.

Ian Horobin, Blue Prism’s Chief Product Officer, tied these broad themes into the launch of the new Version 7 of the company’s intelligent automation platform.

“I have been here at Blue Prism for 18 months to deliver on three things: greater integration, scaling the product capacity, and delivering more value to customers,” he said. “The integration is done. By the end of October, we will have 4x product capacity. We are heading in the right direction at the right time.”

Horobin said that Blue Prism has been laser focused on extending enterprise grade automation and scalability, by rearchitecting their platform.

“We have made scaling and rebuilding the product part of the organization, which is how we have gotten 4x scalability within a year,” he said. “It gives us a bigger capacity to do more for our customers.”

The improvements in scalability come from this new secure server-based digital worker architecture with faster Control Room performance, that makes it easier to expand and orchestrate the digital workforce across end-to-end strategic automations.

“We are taking the scalability to a new level, doubling the scale of digital workers you can run, for improved TCO and easier manageability,” Horobin indicated. “This also isn’t an end point. It’s a stepping stone.”

The improved extensibility comes from an expanded API framework that extends digital worker capabilities with artificial intelligence, with direct plug-ins into the wider ecosystem and a vast choice of best-of-breed applications and technologies. It all makes it easier to build complementary technology on top of Blue Prism.

“It’s a whole new framework and a series of APIs for programmatic control of automation management,” Horobin stated.

The enhanced usability comes from the new browser-based Control Room, which  provides always-on, real-time visibility into a company’s digital workforce from any device, anytime, anywhere. Horobin also emphasized that this is only the beginning of a complete remake of the product to make it easier to use.

“This is the first step in a complete user interface renewal,” he said.

Looking to the future, Horobin stated that the key task remains how to automate more for customers, and get to value faster with greater speed to value

“Why can’t we do more to reduce skills needed to create an automation,” he asked. “The target this year is to deliver a 75% reduction in effort to create an automation.”