iMacros Software Fills in the Data for Civica’s Public Sector Customers

 

Products:

iMacros

Civica-CS-page-650x800

Challenge

The sheer complexity of the steps required to access Internet sites, sign in, manually acquire specific information use this to populate databases made Web-scraping the one essential function that stubbornly resisted automation.

Solution

After a thorough evaluation, Civica selected iMacros software. The process showed that iMacros could do the job and was easy to use.

Result

When a customer clicks on button to embed a script, it automatically fires up iMacros to record all the steps a user takes, then builds the script of the HTML it’s producing to enable web-scraping. When iMacros has built and saved the script, the script is automatically copied back into Civica software, which uses it as an automation piece.

Story

Challenge

The sheer complexity of the steps required to access Internet sites, sign in, manually acquire specific information use this to populate databases made Web-scraping the one essential function that stubbornly resisted automation.

The sheer complexity of the steps required to access Internet sites, sign in, manually acquire specific information use this to populate databases made Web-scraping the one essential function that stubbornly resisted automation.

Solution

Several tools were considered, including Selenium®, a browser automation system; Windows and Web recorders like WinParrot® and WinAutomation; and automatic testing software packages TestComplete and Ranorex® Studio. Brabrook’s team also looked at Automation Anywhere and WinTask. “We needed simplicity of use and access via Microsoft Component Model technologies (COM).” However, none of these approaches delivered precisely what Brabrook was looking for, including an all-important ease of use.

After a thorough evaluation, Civica selected iMacros software. The process showed that iMacros could do the job and was easy to use.

Result

To build a script for automatic execution within Civica software, iMacros records the keystrokes for activities such as accessing data from various regulatory web sites. While iMacros’ recording capability is not embedded into the Civica’s Automation Techniques software, when a customer clicks on button to embed a script, it automatically fires up iMacros to record all the steps a user takes, then builds the script of the HTML it’s producing to enable web-scraping. When iMacros has built and saved the script, the script is automatically copied back into Civica software, which uses it as an automation piece.

iMacros also helps track performance to ensure the scripts are run within a specified timeframe. It runs a query against a database and measures the response time. The data is then exported to a reporting application that charts the results.

“We can take timings to see how long each script takes to execute and plot response rates over time. This feature was used recently by one of our city clients when citizens were complaining that it took too long to book tickets at a local theatre. iMacros made it easy to track the cause to poor performance by the current payment gateway provider, who was promptly replaced.”

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