Business process automation is the most important innovation to impact the corporate world since email.
The fact that it’s now possible for a machine to do work on behalf of a human does not necessarily mean you no longer have a job. Far from it. Perhaps your job just got a whole lot easier.
We’re a long way off robots taking over the world — or even your workplace. Right now, we’re simply enjoying the benefits of technology taking certain repetitive and time-consuming tasks off our hands.
This is how best to approach business process automation: you’re simply teaching a machine to do something you don’t have enough time to do yourself.
Introducing business process automation into your organization
The best way to approach the introduction of business process automation into your organization is to look at where the most time is being spent.
If your team uses a time tracker, use the data to come up with your most labor-intensive business processes. They might be things like reporting, fielding customer queries, or chasing up payments.
Your next step is to research what automation solutions are out there to take care of these tasks and free up your team’s time for other activities.
Without further ado, let’s look at 3 easy business process automation hacks for your enterprise.
3 simple business process automation hacks
1. Chatbots and VPAs
Chatbots are taking the business world by storm. Whether you love them or hate them, they’re here to stay. And there’s one thing we can all agree on, their response time to queries is faster than a human’s will ever be.
Customer service expert, Shep Hyken, says that, when it comes to people, “customers expect the same instant gratification they are used to getting from electronic equipment and technology.
“Your customer service team faces a huge challenge. Today, people are used to speed, and when they don’t get it, they’re unhappy. They don’t want to wait on hold for hours or wait for an email for days. They want it now.”
Even if that response is simply that their enquiry has been received and they can expect a response within a certain time period, it’s more reassuring than silence.
According to research by InsideSales.com, waiting 30 minutes to make contact with a potential customer makes them 21 times less likely to become a lead.
VPAs, or Virtual Personal Assistants, are just as powerful. Evie is a VPA used by the likes of Siemens, Unilever and Airbus. She can organise meetings by talking to other parties via email without your direct involvement.
Filing paperwork, another staple of secretarial work, is also getting digitalised thanks to Germany-based fileee.
2. Digital Adoption Platform
A Digital Adoption Platform is one of the easiest ways to introduce business process automation into your organization.
If yours is an enterprise that uses multiple digital tools — (show me an enterprise that doesn’t) — not only can the Digital Adoption Platform improve the way people use those tools, it can also auto-complete certain tasks for them.
Data entry is time-consuming and extremely prone to human error. A Digital Adoption Platform can take care of this for you, since it’s a smart AI platform that uses machine learning to understand user behavior.
3. Onboarding Software
According to a benchmark report from SHRM, the cost of onboarding is an average cost-per-hire of $4,125. But onboarding a new employee also includes several other factors, such as:
- Hours spent training new employees —average cost: $1,296 per employee
- Paper, printing, and office supplies —average annual cost: between $922 and $1,106
In today’s digital world, much of the onboarding process involves introducing new hires to the organization’s digital systems.
What if there were a digital platform that could take care of all of this for you? In fact, there is. WalkMe makes it easy for employees to achieve and retain proficiency on enterprise software within a short timeframe.
By providing in-app guidance and eliminating the need for memorization, WalkMe quickly closes the skill gap between novices and experienced users.
Final words of advice
Business process automation might sound complicated, but it needn’t be difficult to implement. It’s all about using technology as an assistant.
Don’t try to run before you can walk. Automation isn’t necessarily a huge leap. After all, automation in marketing and other disciplines has been around for a long time.
Do your internal research to figure out what sort of processes are eating up your time. Then do your market research to determine what sort of solutions are available. You might be surprised as to just how useful and affordable they can be.