Wouldn’t it be nice if we didn’t have to perform routine, tedious tasks over and over again? Things like invoicing, social media analytics and expenses all eat away at our time, preventing us from performing meaningful work that makes a difference. In fact, research shows that, on average, employees waste almost one month each year performing menial or repetitive tasks at work.

The good news is that it doesn’t have to be this way. With business process automation (BPA), small businesses can easily and simply automate repetitive tasks, freeing up their employees to perform more strategic, creative work.

You might think that investing in BPA is something only big companies get to do. Doesn’t it take a lot of time, money and expertise? Well, while some elements of BPA are rather difficult to implement, there are actually a lot of processes that small businesses can automate rather easily. Moreover, doing so can actually save money, rather than costing a fortune!

To help you decide if BPA is right for your organization, below, we’ll look at how BPA works, the best use cases for SMBs and how to get started on your automation journey!

Note, too, that automation isn’t something to be feared. Many businesses worry that automation will take away their people's jobs. This definitely isn’t the case! Automation is there to help people work more effectively, not to stop them working at all.

What is Business Process Automation?

BPA uses the art of automation technologies to take on repetitive tasks that a human would otherwise manually perform. BPA can perform these tasks automatically and quickly with great levels of accuracy. Some common businesses processes that organizations automate include:

  • Data analytics and reporting
  • Online customer chats
  • Holiday requests
  • Financial planning and reporting

Note, this list is far from exhaustive! It’s just to help you get an initial idea of how BPA could work for you. It’s important to note, too, that BPA doesn’t tend to be an end-to-end solution. For example, looking at online customer chats, companies often use BPA to help filter a customer’s initial query, before then handing the customer over to a real person in the right department.

What Are The Benefits of Business Process Automation?

BPA can help your business to unlock a range of amazing benefits, including:

  • Enhanced efficiency: Automation tends to be much quicker than manual human work. These tools are also highly accurate, meaning you’re less likely to suffer from pesky errors.
  • Uniformity: Standardizing a process with automation means that it will be carried out exactly the same way time and time again. This is fantastic for ensuring you receive steady, trustworthy results.
  • Productivity: When your employees no longer have to spend loads of time completing repetitive processes, they can turn their attention to higher value work that boosts the bottom line.
  • Improved customer relationships: Efficiency and enhanced productivity lead to happier customers. No matter what sector you operate in, automation can help you to boost your approach to customer service.
  • Workplace satisfaction: Let’s face it, employees will likely find repetitive work boring. By automating these processes, you’ll help your employees feel more fulfilled and motivated at work.
  • Innovation: Data analytics is the foundation of innovation, enabling organizations to uncover new insights and create game changing products and solutions. Moreover, with your employees now free to perform valuable work, they’ll likely come up with more creative ideas and solutions that drive your business forward.

Business Processes That SMBs Can And Should Automate

Hopefully by now, you’re keen to get started with BPA! That just leaves one question: how to do it! In truth, we advise organizations to take a phased approach to adopting BPA. Too much change at once can overwhelm employees. It’s best to take it one step at a time.

We recommend starting by looking at the manual tasks that your people often perform, and then make a gradual plan to transform these with BPA. Often, we help organizations with the following use cases.

  • Invoice processing: You can automate invoice processing in less than a day with the right tools at your disposal. Your finance team will no longer have to spend ages manually checking, sharing and chasing up on invoices.
  • Onboarding new employees: There are loads of great ways to automate aspects of the onboarding process. For example, you could create processes to automate configuring new user accounts and the e-signature process for signing new hires.
  • CRM management: Automation can help with streamlining the sales process, so your people can spend less time on paperwork and more time on chatting with prospects.
  • Social media: There are loads of tools out there designed to help you build your online presence without a lot of manual work.

Ready To Get Started With Business Process Automation?

With our fantastic knowledge of BPA, we’ll help your organization undertake an automation revolution. Let’s get started!  Contact us at Vudu Consulting.

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