CA Process Automation Review

A strong option, as it has all of the common features of this kind of application.


What is most valuable?

The capability of connecting to unlimited number of databases, email servers, and SOAP services.

How has it helped my organization?

Before implementing this product, our Problem and Change Management Processes were very poor. We were unable to implement complex business rules, so our analysts had to do a lot of manual activities and we were very dependent on people’s personal knowledge. Nowadays, thanks to CA Process Automation (PAM), we no longer have this problem. Since PAM is capable of running almost any kind of task, we now have all of the processes' rules placed inside of it.

What needs improvement?

In general terms, the current features fit our needs very well. Because the process design is something like a “blank page,” the product offers dozens of ways to achieve a specific goal. But, if I had to point out something to be improved, I'd mention the configuration. PAM connects to CA Embedded Entitlements Manager (EEM) for authentication/authorization, and to its database to store information about the process. These configurations can be changed only through the installation wizard. There's no way to update such information in the administration interface, which is, in my opinion, very bad.

For how long have I used the solution?

This solution has been used here since January 2014.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Lately, this product has been very stable. However, we have faced two major problems in the past. The first one is related to the database’s XA feature, which is mandatory to run CA PAM. Due to an unknown reason, XA stopped working, which caused us to launch a huge investigation. In the end, the root cause of the issue remained a mystery, and our solution was to re-configure XA from scratch. The second big issue was that the email connector suddenly stopped working, and we were unable to get emails from a mailbox. After a lot of time, we found out that the connection sometimes worked and sometimes didn’t. The solution was to implement a workaround to try again if the first attempt fails.

How are customer service and technical support?

We don't have too much contact with the support team, which is a good sign. In the few instances we did contact them, their technical support was pretty good.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We didn't have an orchestration tool before we purchased CA PAM. We decided to implement PAM because we already used CA Service Desk Manager (SDM) for many years and its licensing includes PAM.

How was the initial setup?

The setup could be a little bit easier. It's very extensive, and it includes a lot of steps that you probably won't understand the need for.

What about the implementation team?

The installation was done in-house. However, all of the processes were created by a vendor team because we didn't have the knowledge to do so.

What other advice do I have?

When compared with other orchestration tools, CA PAM is a strong option, as it has all of the common features of this kind of application. However, it's important to keep in mind that its learning curve can be a problem. I strongly recommend official training for whomever will become an administrator and/or designer.

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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author avatarit_user493200 (Pre-Sales/System Architect at a tech services company with 5,001-10,000 employees)
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