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7 strategic ways to automate business processes

February 15, 2023


Table of Contents

Automation in business processes aims to simplify and optimize repetitive and time-consuming tasks by leveraging technology to complement or augment human labor. By automating business processes, companies can save time, reduce errors, and increase efficiency, leading to cost savings and improved productivity. It can also help businesses scale their operations more effectively without incurring high costs. Additionally, business process automation can provide businesses with real-time data and insights, which can be used to make more informed decisions and improve overall performance.

Ultimately, automation in business processes intends to enhance competitiveness and drive growth by enabling businesses to focus on more strategic and innovative activities. According to a report by ‘The Business Research Company,’ the global business process automation market grew to $14.02 billion in 2023, with a CAGR of 13.1%. However, the market is expected to grow at the same CAGR and reach $22.94 billion in 2027, indicating significant growth prospects for the industry.

Four phases of business process automation

Benefits of implementing business process automation

For instance, AssistEdge RPA, a connected automation platform by EdgeVerve, accelerates enterprise-wide automation and provides a host of benefits. Here’s one such success story.

Royal Philips, a global leader in healthcare technology, implemented RPA to eliminate, simplify, standardize, and automate their finance operations processes. Over three years, RPA allowed them to automate one million work hours in finance operations, improving efficiency, consistency, and overall performance. Additionally, it facilitated end-to-end automation across the finance operations domain by centralizing BPM operations.

For more information, download the case study.

Six strategic ways to automate business processes

Identify, automate, and analyze the right business processes

Identifying and analyzing business processes is a crucial step in automating business processes. It involves specifying the manual processes within the organization and analyzing them to identify areas for automation. This step helps to understand how different business processes are interconnected and how they can be optimized. Besides, it helps identify potential bottlenecks, inefficiencies, and areas for improvement that can be targeted for automation.

Once the existing business processes have been analyzed, organizations can identify areas for optimization. This may involve simplifying complex processes, removing unnecessary steps, or re-sequencing process steps for maximum efficiency. By analyzing each process, organizations can prioritize which operations should be automated based on factors such as ROI, time to automate, complexity, and business impact.

In short, to maximize ROI through automation, organizations can use process discovery tools like AssistEdge Discover to:

AssistEdge Discover, an AI-powered process discovery tool, uses machine learning algorithms to capture data from desktop applications and web browsers and provides insights into process variations and bottlenecks. By using this discovery solution, organizations can accelerate their process discovery and analysis and make informed decisions on process optimization and automation.

Document your processes

Documenting business processes is essential for successful automation because it clearly explains the steps involved in a particular function. In addition, automating an approach requires a deep understanding of how it currently operates, which can only be achieved through documentation or by creating standard operating procedures (SOPs).

Hence, SOPs are crucial for clear process documentation, enabling the automation of business processes. However, small businesses often overlook their importance. Leaders should prioritize SOP creation as a quarterly goal and establish a dedicated time for employees to define and document the procedures.

Choose the right automation tool

Choosing the right RPA tools for a business can be challenging due to budget and business needs. Hence, consulting with experts and evaluating solutions based on their features and capabilities is essential. For automation of routine tasks, the AssistEdge RPA platform by EdgeVerve is an excellent choice. It offers easy-to-use features like intelligent automation, bot development, and process discovery, making it an efficient solution for automating processes like data entry, invoice processing, and customer service.

Start with simple automation

Simple automation can be completed quickly and has a significant impact on productivity. They allow businesses to gain experience and confidence in automation without feeling overwhelmed by complex tasks. Examples of simple automation include email filtering and organization, data entry and extraction, appointment scheduling, and social media posting.

Businesses can experience quick wins and build momentum by initiating simple automation, encouraging further automation efforts. This approach can also help enterprises gain the confidence to tackle more complex tasks.

Continuously monitor and optimize

Failure to monitor and optimize these processes can result in inefficiencies, errors, and potential non-compliance with regulations. To prevent these issues, businesses should regularly track KPIs, conduct audits, gather feedback, utilize analytics, and continuously improve their automated processes.

Measuring the effectiveness of automated processes and making improvements can be achieved through carefully monitoring KPIs, conducting regular audits to ensure accuracy and reliability, gathering employee feedback, utilizing analytics to identify patterns and trends, and continuously refining and optimizing processes. By following these practices, businesses can ensure that their automated processes remain efficient and effective, helping to increase productivity, save time, and reduce costs.

Plan for scalability and flexibility

Scalability and flexibility are crucial when automating processes. Therefore, businesses must plan for potential growth and changes by creating a solid foundation for quick modifications. They should choose flexible tools and platforms, keep processes modular, and regularly optimize them. This helps increase productivity, reduce costs, and remain adaptable to changing business needs.

Final thoughts

Business process automation tools can automate business processes and significantly improve productivity and efficiency. Thus, with the right automation tools, like AssistEdge, organizations can reduce manual labor, minimize errors, and free up human resources to focus on more value-added tasks. Additionally, as businesses adapt to the changing business landscape, automation will be increasingly crucial for meeting customer needs and staying ahead of the competitive business game.

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