What is Business Process Automation (BPA)?Business process automation (BPA) also known as business automation is a mechanism of utilizing digital technology or software to automate the time-consuming, menial, repetitive tasks to simplify the prolonged complex process to achieve its meaningful results. Additionally, business process automation allows the team members within the organization to easily manage and transfer documentation of files or information. For a fact, this continuous process of automation can be updated or transformed in multiple departments as per the business needs and nature of the tasks.
According to statistics, the global business automation process in the market was estimated to be $7.50 billion in 2018 and is projected to reach a growth of $13.75 billion by 2023. This growth in the market stipulates an increasing demand in the ways to automate business process that focuses on improving the efficiency and integration of the latest technologies.
5 key steps to automate your business processesOrganizations have a lot on their plate right from balancing internal, external procedures, handling shareholders, meeting customer expectations, onboarding global talent and much more. However, these preceding day-to-day business activities could be quite overwhelming for the management that hampers the quality of work, time and cost of the company. Thanks to technology, the process of business automation came in place that efficiently simplified the tedious time-taking tasks by enforcing user-defined systems into action. In simple words, the automated systems are like a workflow management application that helps to automate your business in a more structured format such as:
- Setting up workflow in a defined manner
- Executing plan-to-action tasks
- Schedule the flow of a process chain
Step 1: Define Business GoalsOptimizing business goals become the most prominent step to measure the inefficiencies and key problems in any organization. Such goals help in recognizing the overall progress and develop long-term objectives like:
- What is the current business objective?
- How will automation impact the ongoing business process management (BPM)?
- How to measure the accurate success over results?
Step 2: Automate Recurring TasksIn the second phase, companies establishing the business goals. Now it is time to identify the repetitive activities occurring within the organization. Such tasks can be analyzed through two main sources:
- Determining the company’s inconsistencies via graphical and visual representations
- Build a deeper understanding of the company’s workflow and implement the current repetitive tasks.
Step 3: Choose the right automation toolsOnce the goals are determined and the tasks are identified, the company needs to select the right software that provides the best possible solutions to the problem statements. Here the complexity arises to choose from the various types of how to automate business process that are available in the marketplace which involves, minimal human intervention to perform a particular task. But let us first understand the 3 types of automation namely:
- Fixed automation
- Programmable automation (e.g., cloud-based software)
- Flexible automation
Step 4: Create a Workflow Management SystemAutomating your business simultaneously eliminates manual labor work with an aim to streamline the workflow process. Whereas the objective is to shred out the bulk task in a more seamless manner and maintain accuracy by reducing the cost, time and resources of the organization. Using an optimized workflow management system (WFMS) is crucial for holding all the data in order until the assigned tasks are completely processed. This automated management software maps out the ideal state of the workflow system by finding the unnecessary tasks, automate business process of the stated task and clear-out the bottlenecks to implement an effective workflow management system.
Step 5: Track and Monitor Performance MetricsIf you are wondering that just by developing and integrating a software application for an organization is where the job is done from your end? Then you are completely wrong. As a company, it is the sole responsibility of the management to be up to date with the ongoing changes in the market. For a fact, as the business market changes there is also a significant upgrade in the foundation of how these tools work. However, once you impart the software that navigates to automate business process, it becomes necessary to receive user-generated feedback that helps measure the overall performance of the tool. So, the main questions arise – Why is this important for businesses to measure?
- Tracking performance metrics help in tracing the bottlenecks in the business.
- Identifies the area of improvement.
- Efficiently enhances team collaboration processes.
What are the benefits to automate business process?Just in time when we completely analyze and understand how the process of automating your business works and how dynamically you can build a powerful workflow system for your teams within the organization. The next stage is to consider and acknowledge the benefits to automate business process in your organization. Therefore, to give you a quick peek into the advantages of obtaining and implementing Business process automation solutions, The following are some listed benefits that your organization will acquire in this process.
1. Continuous improvement
While adding a new automation tool that functions to streamline the efficiency of the tasks with fewer or no errors. This automated solution regulates by eliminating the painstaking daily manual tasks and accelerating high-level business processes within the organization. Thus, continuous process improvement enables a rich user experience via multiple applications that leverage process insights, data analytics, real-time reporting and task management system.
2. Eliminates clerical error
The manual approach of calculating the business expenditure can increase the chances of error and misclassification of the whole database. However, automating business process can address all the issues by minimizing the error, following a systematic process to get defined results and categorize the documents into multiple applications. Hence, this automated workflow system helps in keeping the data analysis to generate remarkable performance.
3. Promote Team Collaboration and Productivity
When a business encounters routine tasks that are not able to provide quality results because of their recurring nature and existence, in such cases lack of team collaboration and communication generally affects the productivity rate. However, in such a scenario business process automation replace the manual process and includes collaborative tools like time management, task management, teamwork, connectivity mediums and so on. But you might think about how these tools will promote team collaboration – The answer is as follows:
- Continuously monitoring the delegated activities for a certain period
- Being up to date with the ongoing business decisions and growth.
- Using monthly calendars, tasks list, project management tools that will keep tracking and storing the overall business activities.
4. Regulate Visibility and Scalability
As the day-to-day activities in the business scale up, the number of tasks also increases. Whether it is transferring one or more files from one source to another. Automation makes this process easy whether it is by simplifying bulk tasks relating to the finance, sales or hiring team by streamlining the process of data entry. Hence, through this data gathering and capturing the analytical abilities you as a company can monitor the previous and current data dashboards, providing clear transparency and visibility to delegate more informed decisions within the organization.
5. Build customer satisfaction
Customers are always on the lookout to find immediate solutions to all their problems. In other words, they expect their issues are addressed within no time and obtain easy access to the service journey. Here automation comes to the rescue as it not only assorts the latest FAQs, but this way also helps to assign the query to an authorized agent as and when the ticket is raised. However, such kind of tasks no longer requires hours of paperwork and information while business automation ensures the task to be done within seconds. Thus, this instantly enhances the customer experience that ultimately leads to long-term loyalty and satisfaction.
Top 4 areas where to automate business processes
Hiring can be a strenuous process to handle right from shortlisting the interested candidates to finalizing for employee onboarding process results to increases the time and cost to the company and lose a lot on resources. However, to make the process a smooth flow, employers can thoroughly understand how to automate onboarding process to their advantage. This workflow generated software helps in simplifying the process such as virtual whiteboard tools that could be used to make assessments of the candidates effectively and relatively configure an e-signature software that helps in signing the company agreements digitally. According to a survey by Career Builder it was estimated that over 45% of the candidates who undergo a structured on-boarding process have better hiring experience. Therefore, this workflow software for businesses eliminates inefficiencies, streamlines complex tasks and easily automate onboarding process for both employer and employee.
Sales and CRM
One of the most necessary elements of sales is generating leads. Database retrieved from such aspects is important for real-time reporting and analysis. For that reason, businesses cannot afford to miss sales-related data due to poor management. Did you know? – poor productivity rates in sales and management lead to the cost of over $1 trillion to companies every year. Therefore, with the help of business process automation, you can understand the consumer touchpoints, up to date with the sales report, generated sales traffic, pre-stage and post-purchase satisfaction which will significantly impact the conversion rates for every action.
Don’t be surprised but lot of work goes into creating a legitimate invoice for payment. In a manual sense, such invoice processes must go through several stages to receive valid results. But not to worry! All the complex stages can be streamlined by using a business automation management system. Companies implement automation for payroll, employee database and invoice related processing. Therefore, you can get started by creating an invoice process flowchart that will eliminate the blockages and solve the inefficiencies and inconsistencies on the way.
In every competitive business, customer service and support play a crucial role in solving customer related queries and efficiently fix their problems. Thus, automating the business process means integrating a chatbot function that will help customers directly put them through the customer representative or agents. Until the issue is raised and solved the journey of the complete case will be acquired in the company’s database. Additionally, this automated user-generated tool will also function to receive frequent customer listings, insights into the overall customer support system with the opportunity to improve operational excellence.