Business process automation (or BPA) is like flossing. There is definitive data to prove it’s necessary, but there are plenty of reluctant, late adopters who are not quite on board with committing to a new practice. The truth, however, is that every day spent resisting process automation is a day of efficiency lost.
In Asia-Pacific, process automation is estimated to achieve a compound annual growth rate of 13.29% over the forecast period of 2021-2026. With pandemic-induced lockdowns, many businesses in the region were prompted to ramp up modernisation and digitalisation efforts, which helped sustain the growth of enterprises amidst the crisis.
This demonstrates the increasing willingness of enterprises to adopt process automation. By automating business processes, organisations can eliminate barriers to achieving future resiliency and meeting business goals and objectives.
Here are some of the reasons why organisations should implement process automation strategies:
1) Improved operational efficiency
BPA software brings about a host of operational benefits for organisations. To begin with, automated processes are largely hands off, which means that employees can rely on the system, and the process owner need not personally monitor the task as it moves seamlessly through the queue.
Additionally, BPA also facilitates the identification and correction of errors and bottlenecks in workflows, which contributes to overall higher process efficiency.
2) Reduced costs
When business processes are manually executed, there is almost always a significant waste of resources. With BPA, the cost of operations is optimally utilised and wastage is minimised, thereby increasing profit margins.
Automation also helps businesses manage vendor contracts with greater efficiency and renegotiate terms favourably.
3) Document management
Maintaining data and documents can be a nightmare, whether with manual or digitised processes. Moving data manually is time-consuming, and heightens the chances of errors.
Automation streamlines document management completely with minimal human effort. Data organisation and retrieval are then simplified, while confidential data is secured with role-based access. Automation allows accurate information to go through a stream of processes smoothly, eliminating human errors and increasing employee productivity.
4) Superior customer service
Automated business processes empower organisations to boost customer experiences. For instance, BPA software helps meet service level agreements consistently. It ensures the availability of products and services are delivered promptly, maintaining the quality levels of customer experience.
Moreover, innovations in process automation, such as chatbots, allow companies to harness artificial intelligence to resolve common customer cases quickly and accurately without the need for a live agent to attend to the issue.
5) Visibility and transparency
Automation improves the visibility of processes through customisable dashboards. With BPA software, established key performance indicators can be tracked at a glance for multiple processes running simultaneously. In-depth reports of process performance provide insights, exploring the performance of the business and determining which aspects should be maintained and which need improvement.
Automation also facilitates transparency in the processes. Given this visibility, teams stay informed on respective task assignments and the progress of each one, encouraging accountability.
6) Greater compliance
Lack of compliance with industry and legal regulations can prove costly for organisations everywhere. Process automation software can help businesses stay compliant with ease. Every time an automated process runs, the log records the task performers’ names, details of tasks, and the timeline within which they were completed. These logs support audit trails and demonstrate compliance.
7) Improved employee morale
BPA significantly boosts employee morale as it provides a friction-free environment for employees to be relieved of unwanted and repetitive tasks, and deliver other functions with increased efficiency and accuracy.
Approvals are faster, which means teams do not need to spend time waiting and reminding managers. Transparency in processes helps high performers get the recognition they deserve. The bandwidth freed up by automation can motivate employees to innovate and improve how work is done.
Solutions to help leverage automation with ease
No-code process automation products are built for business users with no technical knowledge. They are simple, user-friendly, and enable fast and seamless deployment of workflows. For instance, some automation platforms are designed with drag-and-drop form builders and visual workflows that allow businesses to build processes of varying complexity effortlessly. Business users can also generate reports and data analytics easily, providing valuable insights to drive process improvement efforts.
What was once a necessary step for business continuity in a crisis has now become a critical factor for businesses to stay ahead of competition and improve business outcomes. It not only helps organisations accelerate their business transformation journey, it also ensures they stay on top of their game.