Tips for automating your business processes

Por: Pedro César Tebaldi Gomes em 29.04.2014

Technology is one of the main allies of entrepreneurs who dream of leveraging their business without having to spend a lot of money. This is also true in business processes that, when automated, can cause activities to become more agile and productive, requiring less time and effort from the staff and the responsible sectors. However, before you start a change as important as this in your company, you need to know if it will bring the expected results. Check out some tips for automating business processes successfully:

Business processes

 

Identify the processes

The first step to be followed is to map, thoroughly and comprehensively, all processes (or part of them) which can or must be automated. In order to do this, identify cases like:

  • documents distributed among several employees/sectors;
  • recurring queries for location of files;
  • duplicate activities and/or manuals;
  • tasks which, when completed, can trigger other automatically;
  • points at which the process is interrupted due to a person that is unavailable.

These cases can be directly related to the performance of employees, the level of productivity of a factory, customer flows in sale channels, e-commerce practices, among other factors.

 

Use of in-house resources

The systems used by your company often rely on some features that allow partial preview of possible gains from automation. Imagine a software that records the purchases of your clients: when the order enters the system, it can trigger a series of internal processes automatically within the company (such as invoice generation or location of product in stock) requiring only a few changes to the code. Then, your company will be able to go for more robust process automation with the use of tools available on the market, which will ensure the reduction of the main bottlenecks and the real increase in productivity.

 

Monitor carefully

In order to evaluate how the process automation impacts the company, it is necessary to define the performance indicators that you hope to improve with the initiative, comparing the results of the current scenario with the ones after the change. Choose the most important metrics for your business, which will show the performance of the company towards the strategic objectives. This will allow for more accurate testing and greater control of the processes.

 

Get ready for the changes

The automation of processes in an organization substantially changes the way people perform their daily tasks at work. And we can’t forget that people are indispensable elements so that the new scenario can be accepted and adopted as routine. Thus, delegate the business process automation to a professional with experience and who is committed to the achievement of objectives, so that the changes can be managed without generating harm to the company’s good work environment.

 

Don’t forget the client

Many companies develop the business process automation having only them in mind. But remember that the most important changes are those perceived by the clients, such as agility in the service, the delivery of products/services, the easy way to complete a registration, etc.

 

Have patience

When you start the processes automation, remember that you can still change them later. So, don’t expect the first change to be perfect, because it may take some time until the process matures and produces the expected results. Respect the iteration cycles and periodically evaluate what can be done to improve the current state. The process automation is fundamental so that the company can make better decisions about the business and achieve better levels of service. So, your automation and continuous improvement cannot be seen only as temporary actions, but rather as part of the company culture.

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