Updated: May 22, 2020
Automated processes can set the right activities into motion, but it can take a lot of initial hard work. However, once set up, the results will be worthwhile.
When you automate your business processes, which typically make up the disorder and frustration in your Organisation, you essentially wipe out the stressful tasks faced by your Employees.
When there is chaos in an administrative environment, it tends to lead to human error, which could end up being costly to the organization both financially and time-consuming.
Based on experience, the main reason Organisations hesitate, is because they feel that this could be a long, tedious and costly task but what they don’t realize is that these changes could ultimately improve Organisational efficiencies and increase their bottom line.
There is no doubt that #automation supports the bottom line in a positive way and yet Organisations are reluctant to invest in these opportunities.
If your Organisation is on a path to #Automation, then here are three key considerations to keep in mind in ensuring you are automating the right components within your Organisation.
1. COMPLETION OF AN ORGANISATIONAL ANALYSIS Obtain a good feel about where the Organisation is in terms of key issues, opportunities, risks, and challenges through an engaging collaborative process. Ensure you understand the gaps within your Organisation. Map out existing business processes to work out how many hours your Organisation is currently spending on tasks that could be automated and prioritize the most effective functional areas for time and cost-saving opportunities. Make an accurate estimate around the scope of work which is needed to move you from where you are to where you want to be, to successfully implement your automation processes.
2. USER ADOPTION Ensure that the Subject Matter Experts mapping out the process flows, do skill transfers to fellow team members which will ensure knowledge transfer is taking place. No single team member should be responsible for automation. It’s a team approach that will ultimately benefit everyone in the Organisation. Documenting the process and using tools such as MS Visio to draw process flow diagrams are useful. Ensure that Management explains the benefits of automation, to create a smooth change management process, as people don’t naturally like change in the workplace. Whatever process you are automating, even if it’s something simple like a document management system, ensure that all staff is adequately engaged and trained which will ensure there are user adoption and commitment to the process.
3. DOCUMENT YOUR EXPERIENCES It’s only through trial and error that we learn from our experiences. As you learn and gain insights into the process to develop and procure new and better ways to handle systems in your Organisation, document it. It’s important to do a Post Implementation Review (PIR) to ensure that the team members provide feedback to each other where they can improve the next time, they try to automate a process. A great benefit from this is that any new and upcoming staff member will be able to use the lessons learned from the PIR exercise in order to avoid previous errors and challenges.
That sums up 3 simple ways to ease your way through to automation.
An important point to note is to calculate your Return on Investment through this Automation process. You need to look at how much Human Resources, Time, and Money your Organisation will save by implementing automation to a manual process?
The famous quote by Bill Gates:
“The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.”
So, ensure that your manual processes are robust prior to implementing any automation.