Raise your hand if technology makes you a little wary, or the thought of using apps and software to take over some of your business processes seems risky and unnecessary. If so, you’re not alone.
Business process automation involves incorporating technology into your business to automate certain procedures and make the work happen more efficiently. It’s a scary step, and it’s ok to be a little cautious about it. Though generally a good thing, business process automation is not for every business or every situation. It takes time, money, and a little bit of risk, but often, the payoff can be great. So, can business process automation help your business? Let’s look at the following questions to find out.
Is Communication an Issue with your Business?
Communication, especially amongst employees, is a major key to success in any business. Communication can come through in-person meetings, phone calls, emails etc…. Email is the communication method of choice for many businesses. It makes sense. It’s fast, easy, can leave a paper document trail, and even telecommuting employees can participate in the conversation. The problem is that emails sometimes get lost, or not everyone sees all of the replies. Email chains become too long to follow and important information gets missed.
If it seems like communication is crumbling in your business, you may want to consider this as an area for automation help. How exactly this will look for you will depend on your business and its needs. For example, a doctor’s office may implement software to keep track of each patient’s medical records and history. This can eliminate issues in communication
Your business may have clients that several people in the company work with. Instead of sending an email, or a hand written note, to the whole group time every time something happens with that client, you can use certain software to update that company’s profile in your system and everybody on the team can see it without a flurry of confusing emails.
Are you Drowning in Paperwork?
Let’s be honest. When it comes to businesses, big or small, there is A LOT of paperwork. In accounting alone you worry about invoices, time sheets, payroll, tax records etc…. It can be a tedious task to file all of this paper work, and an even more time consuming one to go back and find the document you need when someone asks for it. Not to mention-hard copies of paper work can take up a lot of space!
Tipac looked at studies of various departments in large companies and discovered, “…all of them found that automating their paperwork and documentation processes led to them spending 40-50% less time on administrative work, allowing them to focus more on their main tasks.”
If paperwork is dragging you down, it is time to think about using automation to help. Business process automation will save you time, save you space, and it leaves less room for human error when it comes to data entry and keeping records.
Ryan McHugh of Record Nations reminds us that there are at least three types of records you should keep hard copies of: wills, promissory notes, and titles or deeds. Any hard copy document you get rid of should be shredded. To read more about what to keep and what not to keep, check out the full article.
Is your Business Growing without enough Man power to Keep Up?
Congratulations—your business or start up is growing, and it is growing fast! As exciting as this is, it can also be overwhelming as you realize you do not have the man power to keep up with everything: dealing with clients or customers, HR, accounting, and making sure everything within the company stays cohesive through good communication. Hiring and training new employees takes time and money. Investing in and implementing automation software can be a great help. It may reduce the number of employees your business needs, and it will help your company to stay organized as it continues to grow.
But, what about the risks?
As with any change, there are some risks involved. For example, one of the dangers of relying on business process automation software too completely is that if it fails at some point, you may not have enough employees able to do things on their own. It is important to have somewhat of a human back up should the automation falter.
Also, as Satyam Tagi of Certes Networks points out in article for Forbes, “15 Smart Tips For Introducing Automation To Your Business“, “What is automated and digitized can be hacked…. Be mindful of security and plan accordingly.”
Can automation help your business? If, after reading through this, it seems like diving into the world of business automation is the right next step for your business, you may be wondering where to begin. At Lucid Advisory and Finance we use accounting programs such as Xero, Bill.com, Gusto, HubDoc, and FUTRLI. Other examples of programs you can use for business automation help can be found here.
However, be sure to do your research and find what will work best for you and your company. To learn more about how we can help you at Lucid Advisory and Finance—contact us!