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Automating Your Agent Desktop is Easier than Boiling an Egg

Daniel Foppen
CX Service Strategy

Boiling Egg

At Oracle's 2016 Modern Service Experience in Las Vegas, we showed just how easy it is for anyone to get started with desktop automation.

At the conference, we hosted both a hands-on workshop and a breakout session to show how to boil an egg - or in this case, automate your desktop. Our breakout session featured an in-depth customer presentation and demo from Sara Knetzger, 2016 Oracle Service Cloud Advocate and Oracle RightNow Applications Administrator at WageWorks, on her deployment (thanks Sara!).

In this post, we want to share key learnings from our sessions and inspire you to start automating your own agent desktop.

Desktop Automation Is Easy Peasy

The main takeaway from our sessions? Desktop automation is easy. You don't need to be a technical wizard to automate. In fact, anyone willing to dedicate a few hours to go through tutorials, view some videos, and try it on their site will be successful. (See the last section of this post for great resources to get started.)

Why Desktop Automation?

Desktop automation is all about making your agents' lives easier and more productive. By starting to automate actions in the desktop, you save mouse clicks and typing (anyone thinking about a TTR decrease?).

The Three Components of Desktop Automation

Workspace Rules

Workspace rules are the easiest and most-used component of desktop automation. Workspace rules basically change the behavior, data, and content within a workspace based onTriggers, Conditions, and Actions. For example, when a certain field changes in the workspace or a button is clicked (the Trigger), the Workspaces Rules will then verify a Condition from a long list of possible conditions such as a new record being created, a field with a certain value, or a hidden object. Once the condition is verified, an Action is carried out, such as set the value of field, show a field, focus on a tab, or display a message box. Using workspace rules is easy because of the intuitive workspace rule designer.


Workspace rules are typically used to present the most relevant information to agents based on the context of the incident and to automate tasks. Also, workspace rules are a powerful way to enforce data integrity and compliance to business processes, data restrictions, and standards.


Agent Scripting

After workspace rules, agent scripts are the next most frequently used feature. Agent scripts are basically mini workspaces in wizards. In a screen-by-screen sequence, the agent is guided through a series of steps to determine the right action, collect data in a certain order, or provide prompts to explain a particular process.

Agents scripts are often used to train new service agents or in situations where you want your agents to walk through a more prescriptive step-by-step interaction sequence. Depending on the customer's input, the scripts may require multiple branches. The scripting pages can include data fields, questions, rules, and reports and can be added to workspaces or run in a stand-alone window. Agent scripting is a great tool to standardize the support experience.


Workflow is the third, and most powerful, component of Desktop Automation. Desktop workflows are used to dynamically show different workspaces and scripts depending on context and to automatically create and manipulate records. They break up complex workspaces into smaller pieces. Workflows are typically used to meet more complex scenarios where workspace rules and agent scripts do not fit the requirements.

Essentially, workflows allow you to design business processes and automate steps. What makes this so powerful is the intuitive graphical designer that makes it (really) easy to create workflows for business processes.


To get you started, we have built four workflow templates that are plug 'n' play. These templates have been built for the four scenarios that almost all of our customers face: whether to create a new incident or edit an existing
incident, automatically add tasks, copy incidents and set fields in the copy, and automatically create a contact when there is no contact. (Note that Workflows may require additional licensing for some types of desktop seat

Get Started With Desktop Automation

Okay, so we've convinced you to try boiling your own egg (or get started with desktop automation). Now you need to know where to find the pan, the stove, and the water.

There are a wealth of resources available to help you get started with desktop automation.

How about you? What desktop automation have you implemented already? Any tips and tricks to share? In what areas would you like to see more content around desktop automation?

Have you discovered that it is indeed easier than boiling an egg?

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