Businesses must establish standardized processes to ensure employees don’t overlook details, abandon tasks before completion, repeat, or skip workflow steps. Standardized processes ensure compliance and conformity with set regulations. Most companies use Business Process Automation (BPA) today to manage projects, knowledge assets, portfolios, workflows, dataflows, and self-service portals.
Automation has become an integral part of every business. McKinsey reports that approximately 31% of businesses have fully automated at least one business function. And while the short-term benefits of automation are well known, there are lesser-known, long-term benefits. These can have a profound and lasting effect on a business.
The Long-term benefits of process automation
Even if you have a skilled team, there’s always a risk of human error. People make mistakes—sometimes costly ones that take time to fix. Process automation decreases the likelihood of mistakes.
For instance, automated workflows can send alerts to team members about pending approvals. The people responsible can click an accept/reject button and even add a detailed comment. Once authorization is given, work moves forward. When automated workflows handle repetitive tasks, employees can focus on high-value work.
Organizations that use process automation software save a lot of time because they don’t perform business processes manually. Administrative tasks such as payroll, paperwork, and regulatory compliance are automated. Employees focus on higher-level, intellectually-stimulating work and improve organizational efficiency and productivity. By removing the human element from the process, automation helps improve quality, reduce costs, and simplify workflows.
Human error can harm all departments. An error in HR can lead to legal issues, while one in marketing can decrease revenue. Workflow automation mitigates risk, doing work that doesn’t require human input or analysis. Minimizing the risk of delayed actions or documents makes automation a worthwhile investment.
Process automation saves time and boosts productivity. Because employees spend less time on repetitive work, they can work on improving business-critical skills. In an automated environment, employees have the time and resources to focus on strategy, innovation, and technology. This results in a much higher employee productivity rate. Research reveals 90% of employees feel burdened with repetitive tasks that could be easily automated.
Manual processes are not scalable and hinder business growth. For instance, manually invoicing a hundred clients requires more resources than invoicing them automatically. Automated processes are scalable because machines can perform multiple tasks much faster than humans. They can easily handle increases in workload and demand. Each business unit can benefit from workflow automation.
How to ensure your process automation strategies yield long-term benefits
Choose the right tool
Many BPA tools are available on the market, so do your research to find the best fit for your organization. A no-code automation platform may be better than a low-code platform. Here are some factors to consider when choosing a no-code platform:
- Ease of use: Employees should be able to use the platform without extensive training.
- Compatibility: The automation platform should work with your existing software and hardware.
- Flexibility: The software should be scalable and adapt as your business changes.
- Cost: Consider the cost you will incur to operate the software, not just the upfront acquisition cost.
Monitor and optimize
After deploying the automation project, monitoring and optimizing processes are critical. Technology is constantly changing, and processes evolve, so you must always tweak and improve your processes to streamline them in the long term. You may need to adjust processes as your business changes or as you get employee feedback. Regularly review processes to ensure that they still meet your needs.
Foster a culture of process improvement
Continuous improvement is a must to enjoy the long-term benefits of process automation. There must be incremental and ongoing efforts to improve processes and reduce waste. Automation can only succeed if it is integrated into the organization’s culture. Employees should know that’s how things are done. Building a continuous improvement culture is much better than executing a cluster of projects.
Make your organization more efficient and productive
Over 40% of workers spend 25% of their time on manual, repetitive tasks. If this time was spent on rewarding aspects of work, organizational efficiency and productivity would go up. Automated processes minimize errors and redundancies, resulting in more efficient work.
According to research, 67% of organizations use process automation solutions to improve end-to-end visibility. Most of these companies use low-code process automation systems. Get the right process automation software and allow employees to focus on high-value work.