In order to determine whether or not you should introduce levels of automation into your business, you first need to understand the efficiencies it would create. As time goes on, many organizations are starting to see the value automation can bring. And more and more often, companies are choosing to adopt automation software that can do countless back-end tasks to save time, money, and the hassle that often comes with large-scale projects.
Some worry automating a business could lead to fewer jobs and subsequently hurt the economy. Most automation practices, however, are meant to be supplemental in nature and not meant to replace employees. For most industries, utilizing this type of technology can help to complete redundant tasks, allowing employees to focus on more critical matters of the business. Here are some great ways in which automation can benefit your business, whether it be financially or strategically.
1. Reduce Repetitive Task Work
One of the biggest benefits of utilizing process automation software is to save time on repeatable project tasks. From jobs as simple as inputting data into spreadsheets, configuring applications, and simplifying order processing, automating your business can have countless benefits. Think of the hours that will be saved and manpower that can be allocated to more important tasks if routine procedures are taken care of with virtually no error.
The average time it takes to process an order manually is around 5 minutes. If this procedure was automated, it would take a quarter of the time and would mean more workers allocated to fill orders, resulting in a higher level of output. This same scenario can be applied to almost any department of a business, and work effectively regardless of the volume of data, the number of orders or any other inputs that companies encounter regularly.
2. Better Visibility and Continuity Across Departments
Overseeing multiple projects, accounts or departments can make it extremely difficult to focus your efforts for an extended period of time. This can make it difficult to see how the company is performing outside of your prerogative. Similarly, measuring your employee’s level of output as well as their delivery speed in order to set department standards could take months and extensive resources to collect the necessary data. Automation tools can handle all of this and provide feedback in real-time to give you all the information you need to be a successful manager.
Visibility both within a single department and across multiple divisions of a business can help day-to-day operations run smoothly and efficiently. Employees who are not meeting quotas and process inefficiencies will be apparent and easy to monitor. Not having to worry about micromanaging a staff takes a significant strain off of your shoulders and should, in most cases, improve the overarching perception of the “business hierarchy.” Automation will dramatically reduce the unknown elements of inefficiency many businesses struggle to locate within their processes and fix.
3. Increased Accountability of Employees
The rate of productivity of employees will now be under dramatically more scrutiny by management due to the fact that visibility is improved when automated task monitoring is implemented. Accountability will, therefore, become a prominent aspect of day-to-day business operations. And not only does accountability take place on a personal level, but it will balloon to incorporate the “team” mindset that is built into most business models.
Employees who are falling behind in their workload compared to their counterparts will stand out. Similarly, the data collected makes discerning high-performing individuals just as apparent to management. With this in mind, employees across all disciplines will be more productive and efficient, knowing their performance is being logged for evaluation purposes. No one will want to be the one who falls to the back of the pack, making each project or task a priority for those looking to succeed and thrive within the company.
4. Improve Dollar Retention Rate
Did you know that it is 7 times less expensive to keep current customers than it is to find and convert new customers for your business? With the improved turnover time and efficiency that comes with automating business practices, you will ensure that your customers continue to be satisfied with your performance and as a result, should continue to work with your company in the future. As you sign new clientele who see the impressive work you are doing for them, your revenue will increase while fewer clients will be lost to under-performance or competing businesses. Although the initial investment and setup of automating tasks may be steep, the benefits can be seen almost immediately, followed by a huge increase in the bottom line.
5. Eliminate Excess Waste
Completely eliminating lag and waste during production is almost impossible, but with automated services to control the rate at which projects are completed, the total amount of material and money that is lost during manufacturing can be dramatically reduced. Pair automation with other money-saving techniques such as more affordable materials, closed-loop manufacturing processes, and volume reduction to ensure your waste is minimized. This is a perfect example of how automation is used only as a supplement to a workforce. Although machines can create products and complete certain services, the human element is an integral part of almost all business practices.
The cost of unused and waste material is incredibly high and is almost always reported as a loss each quarter or by year’s end. The savings you earn from using automated production plans could be allocated elsewhere, improving other departments or upgrading current technologies used within the business to even further boost efficiency.
The act of automating your business is a fast, easy, and financially beneficial way to increase the efficiency and overall production of virtually any business. Evaluate what areas of the company would benefit from this switch, calculate the potential return on investment of automating, and research what the best option is in regard to your budget. It won’t take several years or even several quarters to see the benefits of automated processes. You will be netting a profit from the investment before you know it.