High levels of automation are becoming the norm for business across the economy. From the global industry giants to mom and pop businesses, there is a focus on streamlining efforts and maximising efficiency.
Automation doesn’t mean that an artificial intelligence robot is running an entire business. It involves technology, but it doesn’t negate the human influence. Business requires a human element. Therefore, automation consists of marrying the workforce, technology, and innovation to maximise efficiency, growth, and profit.
As it’s fast becoming a crucial factor in business today, here are some ways of efficiently automating your business.
Start with the easiest process
Pick a function of your business that is simple but falls victim to frequent human error. Perhaps it’s an essential task, but it doesn’t fall under a specific employees job description and is neglected. Automating such an assignment will improve efficiency and save time.
Study industry benchmarks
Although the captains of industries are not always perfect, there is a reason that they’re at the top. Study their processes carefully. If there is a scalable, automated process, try implementing it (or a similar one).
Focus on specific functions
There is no point in trying to automate several functions of your business in one complex system. It’s a recipe for failure.
Choose one particular function that can be automated. Learn to improve its efficiency and master the process. Monitoring ROI can be a useful marker for success.
Next, you can move on to another function.
Semi-automating certain aspects of your business will be a necessary step. Many operations will need a combination of human and technological resources, at least in the initial stages.
There are integrated systems available which help streamline business functions that are traditionally carried out by people. Services such as cloud payroll or HR, drive organisations toward a more automated system, while still being operated and monitored by an employee.
Spot repetition in your business
Tasks that involve continuous repetition should be considered for automation. Different automation strategies should be looked at, with a focus on improving efficiency while maintaining quality.
Keep it simple
Implementing overly complicated systems make them difficult to interpret, maintain, and learn from. They are also less likely to succeed in the long term. Keep your automated processes simple, with measurable KPI’s. An example of a simple automated process may be the installation of a chatbot to respond to FAQs on your company website or social media pages.
Outsource specialised tasks
Although it’s not strictly automation, outsourcing specialised tasks is a way of efficiently streamlining functions within your business. Not all organisations benefit from outsourcing, but for those that may not have the resources available, outsourcing marketing, design, accounting, or IT operations can be cost-effective.
Delegate, where possible
One of the fastest and most effective ways to increase efficiency in business is to strategically delegate tasks. A well-led team, with clear goals and responsibilities, can achieve great things for a company.
Leaders should teach, empower and trust their subordinates to execute tasks and fulfil objectives. Communication is paramount. A well-oiled team of effective employees is key to successfully automating in any business.