Through modern technology businesses have been able to create process automation for the organization for a number of customized office applications. They have also been able to restructure their labour resources and revisit as well as redesign the various workflow steps to make the overall operations more process driven eventually leading to more efficiency and profits. Now that we have discussed the importance of automation in business processes, let us look at a few benefits that the business automation in full or in part can bring to the business in the short, medium and long term:
- Transparency & Accountability: In any modern organization that is attempting to streamline its processes and operations management, automation is a key step towards creating systematic accountability by developing ownership on each step of the overall business process. The transparency in information flow, as well as clear-cut accountability structure that can be suitably automated, can go long way in reducing obscurity in decision making. It can also prove helpful in fixing responsibilities along with accountability. The application of automation technologies in business management also helps in critical identification of the workflow process thereby, trying to evaluate the processes that take longer than required and fix the responsibilities for the same, making whole process more efficient and fair. Through a fair process of accountability, the workforce also feel fairly treated resulting in better performance since there is no passing the buck.
- Improved Quality & Consistency: One of the other important benefits of automation in business is that it ensures that the consistency of the product or the service can be far more uniform through automatized systems that can be accessed and implemented in a much more uniform fashion. Since automation ensures that all the actions are performed in an identical way, the results can be more predictable, reliable and planned in a better way towards the accomplishment of the overall results. Needless to say, the delivery of consistent and high quality product or service will be an invaluable asset to the organization that will create more satisfied customers that will patronize the business more frequently. In terms of consistency too, the automation process can make unique and well-defined workflow that will be same across the users or workers that will eventually have the customers receive the same kind of experience irrespective of who is delivering it. Quality and consistency are the two bedrocks of the success of any organization and automation can effectively bring both these attributes to a business.
- Clear Communication: The importance of a transparent, instant and honest communication system can never be over emphasized in a business. It is often said that the best managers are the best communicators.Whether is the communication between team members, between the management and team members or between customers and the business, the fact is that automation can definitely play a big role in enabling the various stakeholders indulge in much more streamlined and effective communication. An automated workflow enables the teams to interact in real time and respond to customer queries in a much more streamlined way whilst being on the same page. Also through automated communication processes the right information reaches the right people and gets filtered along the way so as to aid decision-making as well as ensuring security of information. In nutshell, automation is one of the most effective ways to streamline the most important process of strategizing, developing and effecting a process driven communication system that will ultimately aid in smoother business operations.
- Cost Effective: Eventually, all businesses want to make money for themselves and for all the stakeholders. There is nothing that appeals to a business more than creating cost effective advantages in terms of implementation of a process or system. As it so happens, automation can save a lot of money for the businesses and in many distinct ways. Firstly, the cost of manpower can be reduced to a large extent by migrating from manual systems which are much more prone to human errors. They are also slow and inefficient when compared to automation driven processes. The expensive costs involved in human inaccuracies and inconsistencies reduce the dependence on human resources. Also with the help of automation, many things such as manufacturing wastages, pilferages and human mischief can be significantly reduced. Automation can also improve the operational efficiency thus saving precious time and efforts, thereby maximizing productivity and results.
- Better Reliability: Another extremely crucial positive outcome of business automation is that it provides information and statistics that are reliable, authentic, scientifically deducted as well as actionable. The reliability is further improved by standardizing transparent flow of information across the organization. Reliability of information is an important tool in the hands of the management to formulate policies, action plans towards the effective policies implementation. This translates into a better experience for the end customer and provides more trust and transparency in the business itself.
- Established Hierarchy: One of the most important characteristics of an efficient workflow is to assign individual responsibilities that are hierarchy driven with clear command and control guidelines. Responsibilities can also be independently demarcated so they do not have any ambiguities in the approval process. This is important in all kinds of organizations but especially relevant in the larger businesses where there are many levels of approval matrix that have to be collated towards many decisions; mainly involving financial decision making. With an effective automation system in place this approval matrix can be aptly charted, thereby making the decision-making process smooth, fast, transparent and process driven. This also works towards creating a work environment based on fairness and reduced discretion where all the decisions are based on solid statistics and are result and performance driven.
As we can clearly see from the above pointers, it does make a lot of sense for all organizations big, medium and small to consider automating some or all of its business processes in order to make the operations and management more streamlined, transparent and effective. These automation processes can create process driven solutions, aid faster, more transparent and more effective decision-making as well as standardize the processes of customer engagement thus improving the customer experience and instill confidence in the business.