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Improve Power Virtual Agent node/step authoring by matching Power Automate flow authoring

Authoring a virtual agent follows a tree-like visual diagram similar to sister power platform product Power Automate. Actions in Power Automate are called Nodes in PVA.

 

However, there are some features that are missing that make authoring seamless and intuitive. Most of these are already available in Power Automate, making flow designs easier to create and manage.

 

1. When deleting a step, Power Automate will simply tack on the subsequent steps to the previous action, PVA does not. In Power Virtual Agent authoring, the entire tree is broken and requires reconnecting, however this can be nearly impossible due to screen size for more complex conversation trees.

 

2. You cannot copy Nodes/Actions in PVA. Similarly to the above, if one does not want to break their tree by deleting a node, one can attempt to rebuild it from the correct node before deleting the excess. However, copying nodes/steps/actions is not available, though is available in Power Automate, even if you copy whole conditional steps or "apply to each" steps including child actions.

 

3. You cannot "shrink" or "minimize" nodes/actions. Due to the nature of visually displaying a conversation tree on screen, some more complex paths can take up an excess amount of screen space. Power Automate allows users to "minimize" their actions to just the displayname, this is helpful in visualizing the tree overall.

 

4. You cannot Drag and Drop Nodes. In Power Automate, one can simply drag one step to either a previous action or later action. The power automate path will then also update to accommodate the newly moved action. PVA does not allow this, unfortunate considering the drag-and-drop mindset is found across all power platform products.

 

I'm certain there are more, but I wish PVA authoring was a bit more intuitive and easier to manage more complex conversations.

 

Status: New