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Automation and machine learning have become part of many business processes in the 21st century in an effort to reduce the need for human effort on mundane work, as well as expediting operations. Process automation uses technology to eliminate more of the complexities that can slow down efforts in this era of digital transformation. Here are some of the ways in which this technology is changing the game in the industry, while also making sure that deployment isn’t significantly inhibiting workflow.
Understanding Process Automation
The installation of process automation software is meant to remove bottlenecks in the supply chain for companies, while also reducing errors and loss of data all while increasing transparency. Process automation streamlines a system by removing human inputs, which decreases the possibility of any mistakes while increasing the speed of delivery of procedures and boosting quality. This automation software also minimizes costs and simplifies the business process by incorporating people and procedures to create a completely automated workflow.
Process automation is not to be confused with robotic process automation (RPA), even though the two terms are often used interchangeably. While both automate processes, that’s the only similarity. Traditional process automation is much broader in applications and integrations, including the use of machinery to perform tasks. However, RPA is focused on front-end activities and emulates work in much the same way a human would. Process automation often requires input from IT engineers, while robotic process automation turns to robots that can be trained or are self-trained.
When to Use Process Automation
Invoicing, sales orders, data entry, payroll, and onboarding are just some of the processes that can be automated within the workplace. Think of process automation like you would handling the day-to-day activities within a service company. Let’s say a call comes into an electric company to deal with a power outage. Automation software allows the call to come in with details taken down and a job manually created in a working system. Those details are sent off to an engineer, who is able to attend to the job immediately and limit the amount of paperwork in handling the situation that manual processes may sometimes hinder.
There are multiple places where information can be lost, deadlines missed, or paperwork going missing. Process automation takes away all of the opportunity for variance and problems. The incorporation of hardware like smartphones allows for even more benefits within the automated system, monitoring mileage and tracking data electronically to assure process improvement and a better customer experience. This process automation can happen in any industry and in any task that has multiple steps. If there are any repetitive steps, these could easily be brought into an automated approach for better business functions.
Every organization is different in its installation of automation software, but there are five basic steps that are common across the installation of these business automation tools. This starts with identifying tasks and processes that can be automated, eliminating the need for human workload efforts regarding repetitive and time-sensitive procedures. That’s followed by setting organizational goals before utilizing these tools to afford better progress in the long run.
A powerful way to make sure that process automation is implemented is by choosing the right tools to adapt within a cloud environment to be able to handle any type of business process. This is followed by the most important step and that is transitioning to new automation. Staff needs to be on board with the planning process, giving feedback from all sides to make sure ongoing education and transition are smooth. After that, it’s all about measuring and monitoring everything from process mining to database access for the sake of business agility across all systems. Spare valuable time and improve your business’s workflow.