This level describes a system in which rudimentary automation is employed. Human operators have a long history of automating repetitive tasks. We refer to this type of rudimentary automation as script-based automation.
Some characteristics of this type of automation are:
- Focuses on a very specific task or set of tasks with the goal of reducing repetitive actions by a human operator.
- Reduces the risk of human error inherent in repetitive manual actions.
- Typically stands alone, is initiated by human operators and is not part of a larger automation framework.
- In many cases, it is independently maintained and not part of a software development ecosystem.
- Involves the programmatic performance of previously manual actions and can be categorized as imperative programming.
- Includes limited error handling and relies heavily on a human operator to intervene.
- Trades one type of work (performance of repetitive tasks) for a different, more creative type of work (script development).
- In many cases, the lower skill tasks are automated first, leaving the higher skill tasks to human operators. If the reduction in lower skill (repetitive) tasks does not significantly outweigh the increase in higher skill (script development, intervention) tasks, then the realized benefit will be minimal or even counterproductive.
Take away: This level is best summed up using the title of a popular technical book: automate the boring stuff.