Top 5 Reasons why you should automate your business process

Do you get a lot of emails requesting approval? Do you use a lot of paper forms to track processes and tasks? Do you know there are bottlenecks, but don’t have the data to prove where they are? Do you wish you could change a process quickly, but are buried in hierarchy?

You are experiencing the stress and tension of an un-automated workflow. A business process workflow is simply a predictable and repetitive sequence that travels from initiation to completion.

What would happen to your inbox if you could simply hit an ‘Approve’ button for all requests that came in? What if you could get rid of all paper forms forever? What if you could deeply analyze any business process to know how long it takes and where the hangups are? What if you could instantly improve a process and have it updated for everyone in your organization? What if your business process wasn’t dependent on a process owner, but worked seamlessly in the background?

Here are the five best reasons to ditch your paper forms and email requests and start automating your business processes.

1. Streamline communication in your business process :

Emails, sticky notes, and water cooler comments are impossible to organize around a single repeated process. An automated workflow means a simple, streamlined communication process with one dashboard to see all of your requests. Each initiated workflow has its own line of communication to account for any irregularities and discussion in the business process. The work just flows – no email addresses required.

2. Enforce accountability :

When you automate your workflow, you create an owner for each step of the process. Initiations, approvals, rejections, and input are all bound to an individual who performed the action. By enabling that level of information transparency in your business process, you enforce accountability on yourself and your colleagues. A great workflow management system will also give you insight into who gets their job done quickly and who needs help to handle the load.

3. Minimize costs due to manual errors and inefficiency :

With an automated workflow, you bypass the expensive costs associated with errors and inefficiencies when a person is expected to own a business process. Late payments, slow sales approvals, and payments for goods never received all become very expensive errors. Your automated business process can show you the current state of any item and make sure these careless mistakes don’t take place.

4. Develop an insight into the evolution and repercussions of your business process:

Imagine you have automated your business processes, streamlined your employee base to use this new system, and things have been flowing smoothly for the last 2 months. Now think of what you could do with all the data that has been accumulating? You could know how many requests came in, how many were approved, how many rejected, how long each one took, and which step in the process takes the longest.

Since the mode of communication is streamlined and accumulation of data is centralized in an automated workflow tool, you get insights that tell you if your current business process is bottling up at some point – if it’s actually making life easy for your employees or if it’s making things more complicated. This is probably the best input you can have for all your business process management needs.

5. Establish a clear approval hierarchy :

Organization hierarchy is seldom the same as the approval hierarchy for a business process. A well-implemented business process workflow tool, will not only have these approval hierarchies codified into itself, but will also ensure that each process has its own specific hierarchy as deemed by it. The boss doesn’t have to be on every step (unless she wants to) and you don’t have to have secret pre-meetings in the bathroom before getting a project approved!