Some manual tasks in the workplace, such as data entry and follow-up emails, can be tedious and inefficient. They waste precious time and resources, resulting in a decline in productivity. Fortunately, you can leverage technology to automate a wide range of manual tasks, which can help you streamline your operations and minimize human errors. Discover how you can use workflow automation to transform your company into a well-oiled machine.
What Is Workflow Automation?
Workflow automation refers to the process of replacing paper-based and manual tasks with digital tools. It typically involves using a single work platform that integrates with the business systems and controls that are already in place in a company. Its tactical purpose is to ensure the right employees are performing the right duties at the right time and have access to all the resources they need to complete their tasks. Workflow automation enables you to standardize work so that you can reduce or eliminate human errors, provide visibility and accountability throughout the process, and meet compliance policies and business rules.
What Are the Benefits of Workflow Automation?
Workflow automation can benefit your business in many ways, including:
- Providing more insight into business processes: By mapping out your business processes on a workflow automation platform, you’ll be able to get a clearer top-level view of your organization. You can use the insights you obtain to make improvements to your processes so that you can achieve better productivity and increase your bottom line.
- Identifying and eliminating redundancies: Workflow automation also helps you identify and get rid of redundant tasks, which can create more value for your company. Rather than wasting time on useless tasks, your employees can focus on more important things and contribute more to your business.
- Increasing accountability and minimizing micromanagement: Micromanagement isn’t only tedious, but it can also lead to employee disgruntlement. With a workflow automation platform in place, all your employees will know what tasks need to be done, who will be doing them, and when they have to be completed. Since everybody is clear about their responsibilities, they’ll be able to perform their tasks with minimal micromanagement, resulting in greater job satisfaction.
- Improving communication: In a workplace where employees often communicate over the phone, messages can easily get muddled, which can result in costly inefficiencies and mistakes. By improving visibility and accountability, workflow automation can dramatically enhance workplace communication and make day-to-day operations a lot smoother.
- Increasing the quality of products and services: In many cases, employees are selected for projects based on availability instead of skill sets. Workflow automation is important because it enables you to properly plan task assignments and choose the employees who are best suited for the available tasks. As a result, you’ll see an increase in the quality of your products or services.
- Providing better customer service: When you’re using a manual workflow system, your employees are more likely to overlook customer requests and complaints, which can lead to dissatisfied customers. With workflow automation, you’ll be able to easily keep track of customer complaints and respond to them more quickly.
Which Aspects of Your Business Can Benefit From Workflow Automation?
Workflow automation can be a valuable tool for improving almost any aspect of your business. The following are three departments where this technology can be very useful:
- Marketing: Many marketing-related tasks are repetitive, such as sending emails and posting updates on social media. You can use marketing automation software to set up workflows that nurture certain leads with email offers and schedule your social media posts.
- Finance: Finance workflow automation software enables you to create forms, design workflows, and monitor processes so that you can easily streamline budget approvals, reimbursements, and travel requests.
- Human resources: Manually entering your new hires’ personal information, such as names, addresses, and social security numbers, into your payroll and insurance systems can be time-consuming. Human resources automation software can help you do it in minutes.
What To Look for in a Workflow Automation Software Application?
With so many workflow automation software applications available, you may have a difficult time determining which one is most suitable for your business. Look for the features below when choosing a workflow automation solution:
- Intuitive builder: Good workflow automation starts and ends with a workflow design tool that’s easy to master, such as an intuitive drag-and-drop form builder. It also needs to have preview and edit tools and other agile features for quick iterations.
- Access controls: Your workflow automation software should come with access controls to reduce errors and improve accountability. This feature enables you to assign tasks to specific users and specify who can view and edit each task.
- Participant alerts: Opt for a workflow automation software application that alerts your users when it’s time for them to participate. Notification emails can help ensure that your employees will complete their tasks on time.
- Relevant integrations: The best software is able to streamline your business processes beyond the workflow automation platform itself. It can seamlessly send your data to other platforms, such as email marketing platforms, CRM, and Google Sheets.
- Workflow tracking: The workflow automation software you choose should also have features that allow you to monitor your workflows, such as a progress indicator that shows you which task is currently active and a step timer that indicates how long a certain task is taking.
- Data security: Use a workflow automation software application with important security features such as database encryption, browser security, and password protection.
If your business operations involve multiple complex processes, you may want to consider outsourcing your workflow management to Dom & Tom. We’re a team of award-winning developers and strategists with extensive knowledge and experience in providing effective workflow automation services for businesses of all sizes. We can help you identify areas of your business that can be automated and devise a comprehensive workflow automation strategy to help you achieve greater visibility, productivity, and security. Contact us today to streamline your business for optimal performance.