Manual data entry is one of the most tedious and inefficient tasks in companies. It wastes precious resources, time, and affects productivity. In fact, inefficient processes waste about 33% of employees’ time. Workflow automation is the solution as it digitizes manual or paper-based processes.
Automating repetitive, monotonous tasks eliminates human error, allowing employees to focus on the most valuable work. It ensures they focus on the right tasks, those that need human intervention.
Once implemented, workflow automation improves productivity, lowers operating costs, enhances worker safety, increases production output, and makes a company more competitive in the marketplace. This post will help you understand how your company can benefit from workflow automation–and what metrics to measure.
Why Workflow Automation?
Manual processes waste employees’ time, leading to unnecessary work and errors. Automation ensures that tasks are completed efficiently and that work is more accurate and consistent. It helps companies standardize work, comply with policies, and become more transparent.
78% of business leaders believe automating organizational tasks increases productivity. Process management software makes it easy to identify inefficiencies or areas that need improvement. Companies should implement workflow automation to:
- Automate repetitive tasks that don’t need a lot of human intervention.
- Streamline tasks that need to comply with regulations or require an audit trail.
- Save time on processes with a high volume of tasks.
- Make processes more accurate and eliminate human error.
- Make processes more efficient, increase collaboration, and boost transparency.
Benefits of Workflow Automation
Workflow software improves job satisfaction because employees manage their workload better. It also reduces approval cycles, improves time to market, ensures continual process improvement, and enhances business relations. Here are 3 great benefits of workflow automation:
1. Enhanced Quality of Work
67% of employees feel they constantly perform repetitive tasks, and this leaves them demotivated. Many employees want to be more creative, but their jobs don’t allow for it. As a result, they waste 4.5 hours each week on tasks that could be automated. Process management gets rid of unnecessary paperwork and frees up employees’ time. They can focus on more high-impact work and activities.
40% of business managers believe digitizing paper-based processes can help employees perform higher-quality work within a shorter time. Automation allows staff to spend more time on work they enjoy, which boosts their morale. It also allows managers to assign responsibilities accurately.
BMW’s Spartanburg factory now uses robot assistants rather than employees to fit doors with sound and moisture insulation. This has increased productivity by 50%. And the good news is the employees who previously handled these strenuous tasks weren’t let go because BMW promoted them.
2. Improved Teamwork Due to Better Communication
Poor or ineffective communication is a common problem in many workplaces. Many employees believe good communication creates a positive working environment. A past study showed that 80% of U.S. employees were stressed because of poor workplace communication.
One of the biggest benefits of workflow automation is improved internal communication. When employees communicate easily and effectively, they collaborate better, and this improves teamwork. Automation software offers employees a single platform to communicate and collaborate.
3. You Get Actionable Data
95% of organizations have a challenge managing unstructured data. Additionally, 91% of businesses say process challenges prevent them from evolving into data-driven organizations. Automation software can provide valuable data that helps business leaders determine employee performance, business productivity, and identify problems that need fixing. Automation makes it possible to act in real-time based on actionable data. Over time, processes can be improved and more tasks can be automated.
Key Metrics You Can Measure
1. Cost Reduction
No matter how well managed a company is, if processes aren’t automated, money and time will be spent to fix errors caused by manual operations. Automation streamlines processes and prevents costly errors, saving time and money. Companies save money on human resources by automating repetitive, time-consuming tasks. Additionally, project teams and department heads can justify budget allocations based on facts.
Automation allows workers to focus on more valuable tasks that push their teams, departments, and organizations forward. Previously, La Cité college’s registration process took almost 30 minutes. Students had to queue and wait for staff to check paperwork manually. Thanks to automation, students now complete their registration on mobile devices–the forms auto-validate. This has helped the college to significantly reduce staffing costs.
2. Time Saved
Mundane, repetitive tasks consume time and affect your employees’ productivity. Automation quickens the completion of tasks. It simplifies complicated business processes and helps employees do more with the resources they have. When less time is spent on manually-intensive processes, teams can focus on high-impact tasks.
Workflow automation makes employees responsible for specific tasks. Everyone knows what they should do, how they should do it, and when they should do it. In most companies, errors resulting from manual operations mainly affect 2 departments: finance and sales & marketing. The mistakes can affect revenue and customer acquisition, reducing company profits.
Automation eliminates manual data input processes, decreasing errors and increasing accuracy. Whenever approval is needed, the right people in the approval hierarchy get notified. Processes also go through a series of stages to ensure results are consistent.
4. Improved Customer Satisfaction
Customer satisfaction plays an important role in your business, and automation software can help you measure it. You can measure customer loyalty, identify unhappy customers, reduce churn, and increase revenue. The system can also help you attract new customers in a competitive business environment.
According to a recent Gartner survey, 66% of marketers believe that customer experience is the battleground of the future. Intelligent automation can help boost customer experience, helping your company gain new customers and retain existing ones. A 5% increment in customer retention can raise company profitability by as much as 75%.
Activ8 struggled to close deals because of a long and complex sales cycle riddled with mistakes. Switching to workflow software streamlined the process. Salespeople now use an automated quote calculator to offer customers instant quotes. All forms auto-populate and auto-validate, and payments go through immediately. Customers are happier, and sales have increased.
5. High ROI
Automation gives companies a competitive advantage over manually-driven competitors. The ROI is reflected in cost savings, efficient operations, better usage of resources, and even workplace safety. 47% of IT leaders have reported the greatest ROI in operations, while 37% have achieved higher ROI in customer service.
Automation ROI can either be hard or soft. Hard ROI is quantifiable–like time and cost savings, improved service delivery, and labor reduction. Soft ROI is more difficult to measure. It might be higher employee satisfaction, better working conditions, improved workplace morale, and increased brand awareness.
Streamline Your Workflows Today
Every company has 3 goals: to reduce errors, boost productivity, and increase profits. Workflow automation can help companies achieve these goals. It reduces effort, costs, and manual errors, allowing organizations to focus on their primary objectives. Repetitive tasks are completed faster and process results are identical because there’s no human error.