Does Your Business Need an Automation Strategy?
Some businesses would like to think that doing things the traditional way is best. Well, this may be true for certain tasks, but in general, technology has allowed processes to be done much faster and more efficiently—and that’s with the help of business automation.
Automation strategies have proven to be very effective for many enterprises, so much so that Gartner, Inc. speculates that 69% of managers’ current workload could be fully automated by 2024. If your organisation is not yet making full use of automation tools, this post should enlighten you on how your business can benefit from an automation strategy.
What is Business Automation?
Business automation is the strategic use of technology-enabled automation to execute manual, repeatable tasks and even complex business processes. Using this approach, companies are able to perform everyday tasks with minimal to no human intervention, allowing employees to focus on higher value work, and improving overall productivity.
Here are some of the most common types of business automation:
Marketing automation. When done manually, marketing processes could prove to be time-consuming and costly. It’s no wonder that many businesses identify marketing as a key area ideal for automation. Some of the more commonly-used marketing automation software are those that automate email marketing (and maintain strong deliverability rates), segment contacts and customer databases dynamically, generate highly qualified leads, and many more.
Accounting automation. Accounting and bookkeeping is another department that carries numerous tasks which can be easily simplified with automation. For instance, reports that need to be constantly updated like accounts receivables (AR), accounts payables (AP), billing, collections, and others could be generated by accounting automation software. Accounting personnel don’t have to struggle with complex ledger files while manually encoding data, and company executives can access accurate financial reports at a moment’s notice.
Sales automation. Manual administrative tasks in the sales process can be automated as well, assisting sales reps by allowing them to focus on more important work that could result in successfully closed deals. Sales force automation tools also help streamline and evaluate the sales process so that the team leaders can see which strategies are effective and which need to be adjusted.
HR automation. HR automation, particularly in the recruitment process of new employees, has proven to be useful for many of the bigger organisations. With the help of a human resources management system (HRMS) software, several steps in the process can be automated including resume management, scheduling interviews, sending automated offers to potential internal and external candidates, and even onboarding the chosen recruit. HRMS tools can also handle payroll, manage employee data, and perform other HR-related functions.
Top 5 Benefit of Business Automation
Regardless of size and industry, there are several benefits to applying business automation in your company. Let’s discuss the 5 key benefits:
Reduce operational costs. Bringing down operational costs is one way for businesses to boost profitability, and automation helps reduce expenses. Where completing tasks manually takes slower and uses up more manpower, automating these tasks frees up man hours while utilising fewer resources.
Standardise processes. It’s easier to deliver quality products and results to both internal and external customers when processes are automated. Automation plays a huge role in consistency and quality. For instance, business leaders always get error-free reports, and getting new employees to adapt to their work would be easier when many of the functions are standardised.
Boost employee efficiency and productivity. Your employees should not be spending valuable time on manual work if there are automation solutions for those. Document processing, lead generation, and paperwork management for example, are tasks that can be automated, and with these out of the way, your staff can put their time to better use and improve their efficiency and productivity.
Enhance online presence. Customers’ needs and habits have changed over the recent years, and it’s time that your organisation gets on board too. Business automation helps expand your market by making it easier for you to offer products and services online. If you already have an online presence, automation solutions enhance this by giving you a good idea of buyers’ needs and preferences.
Improve customer service. Maintaining an entire customer service department can be very costly and resource-intensive. Fortunately, having a customer relationship management (CRM) tool and a few staff may be all you need to better serve clients. CRM software organises your customer data and keeps track of sales and interactions with each. Clients won’t have to wait long and would have a customised experience every time they have a query or concern with your company.
Should You Adopt an Automation Strategy?
Business automation, without doubt, could be very beneficial to any enterprise. If you aren't using any form of automation in your organisation right now, you could be missing out on huge opportunities for cost savings, employee efficiency, boost in sales, and revenue growth.
That said however, it’s important for you to do some careful consideration before going on an automation spree. First off, think about what goals you want to achieve with business automation. Is it cost reduction? Is it streamlining marketing and sales functions? Now once you’ve given your immediate objective some thought, evaluate what resources you could allocate for automation and see which area in your business could best benefit from it.
Should you have any concern as to how business automation can fit into your company, consult your IT managed services provider for professional advice.