Every business owner wants to increase efficiency, get rid of repetitive tasks and free some time for strategic decision making. Business automation has the power to bring relief to employees and positively affect the bottom line. By installing software to handle simple tasks, you can build a business that is lean, agile, productive, and thoroughly enjoyable.
Business process automation is an overarching term that includes everything that somehow optimizes business processes: from employee onboarding to accounts payable processes. People have a fraught relationship with business automation. On the one hand, they fear that automation will eliminate the need for human skills. On the other hand, there is no way to stop technology from evolving and taking most of our tasks. So, the only way to handle this inevitable process is to embrace technology and find the right application for it in your business. Business automation isn't intended to replace humans. On the contrary, with business automation, you and your team members will be able to enjoy work and creativity more.
Business automation starts with identifying weak or repetitive links in the process that can be performed by computers instead of people. It’s not only about making life easier for employees, it’s also about speeding up the processes and removing all the roadblocks that hinder your team on the way to success.
Here is what business process automation can do for your business:
Minimize costs and avoid errors
The number one reason businesses implement business process automation is cost reduction. With business process automation you can free some of the manpower for other tasks. You can even reduce the number of employees and start hiring based on quality, not quantity.
Another reason why business automation is so beneficial for business is that it allows you to significantly reduce errors. No matter how skilled your team members are, they are human beings bound to make errors. When you integrate business automation into your processes, you limit errors at certain stages of the process, making the whole process more effective and error-free.
Increase quality and guarantee consistency
Quality and consistency are two notions that drive perfect customer experience. You want to deliver best-in-class products on a regular basis to build trust and loyalty. Business automation ensures that every product adheres to the same standards. There is a little deviation in quality with machine-produced products.
Similarly, machines don’t experience productivity or motivation spikes, so the output is always the same, no matter the time of the day. Consistency means that customers will experience the same level of service, which breeds loyalty.
Provide more visibility
The side effect of automation is the analytics and bird-eye view of all the processes. While handling different tasks, automation also records the process and results, so you can see how many tasks were performed, the outcome of each task, and how much time each task takes. This gives you visibility into your business so you can optimize and improve further.
The key to successful implementation of business automation is continuous testing. Luckily, business automation software provides not only the tools for improvement but also the tools for tracking if the improvement was indeed achieved.
Collaboration is the process of working together towards a shared goal. But sometimes your journey to the goal can be disrupted by numerous obstacles such as setting deadlines, breaking down big projects into smaller tasks, and the confusion over which communication channels to use. Business automation allows you to eliminate those obstacles and make collaboration smooth and effective.
Moreover, business automation keeps track of all the conversations in the team, making it easier for you to note the changes and retrieve the information whenever you need it.
When you automate business processes, you create the culture of accountability in your team. Computers enforce certain processes and in order for the processes to run smoothly, all the participants must contribute. This means that your team members will be more motivated to stick to deadlines if they know that the next milestone is triggered by software.
With business automation, you don’t have to guess the owner of the task. You have a clear visibility of who is doing what and how many tasks each team member is handling.
Speed up project delivery
Often times projects get stuck midway because there is no one to approve the deliverables or the approving person isn’t interested in moving the project forward. Business automation helps establish a clear approval hierarchy. You know where the project is at each step while the approval granting person gets the reminders and sees where the project is going next. The approval process is also easier for everyone involved as the deliverables are passed with accompanying comments and notes.
Ensure governance and compliance
Business automation allows business managers to track changes in real time, which is especially important when dealing with government regulations. When the slightest change in regulations can impact your bottom line, you want to stay vigilant and respond as quickly as possible. Business automation software sends you notifications when the changes occur, directs you to the right resources and makes planning and implementation easier.
Essentially, business automation is like your most reliable compliance consultant. It won’t do all the work, but it will ensure the right buttons are pushed at the right time and people are mobilized to get the work done.
Business automation offers a plethora of benefits and opportunities for growth. It can significantly decrease business costs and maximize employee productivity. But the main advantage of business automation is that it allows you and your team to avoid repetitive and boring tasks and dedicate your time to creative and more enjoyable work instead.
Business automation is imperative for any business. But it takes more than a wish to start. Unless you carefully plan business automation implementation, you risk losing employee loyalty on top of instilling chaos into your business. Therefore, the best advice for business automation implementation is to start small. Find one small repetitive task and try your hand at business automation. Make sure you involve employees each step of the way and explain the benefits of business automation to them in clear terms. Educate employees on business automation, let them know that it’s not intended to take their jobs, rather it will help them do their jobs better and improve their skills.