Automate Your Business

Automate Your Businesseasier said than done

In our experience, businesses that are proactive about embracing technology and streamlining automated processes are more likely to thrive and more able to take advantage of new technologies that are yet to come. So we know you should automate your business!

Business Process Automation or BPA is the concept of using automation to streamline internal processes. The result is savings in time, resources, and a reduction in errors caused by the human element. Interaction Process Automation(IPA) is a tool that makes this possible and makes it simple. Your staff will be less frustrated and more productive.

Some processes we all once took for granted should now well and truly be obsolete as they are done more effectively through automation. Managers resistant to taking on new technologies and automated business processes run the real risk of simply being unable to compete with organisations that are more responsive, flexible and adaptive through the use of automation. It is often fear that fuels this resistance, yet the end is near for those who don’t.

Who In Their Right Mind Would Resist Automation?

A team that is not confident with technology, so rather than look inept they don’t introduce it.

A team afraid of doing themselves out of a job, rather than the productivity and profitability of the business.

A team without policies and processes fears the holes that will be found when we carry out the automation process. This is when management fears their gap in knowledge will be found out.

A business that cannot afford it, or doesn’t value automation as an investment in the business.

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 Automation | AI | Machine Learning

The Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Business Strategy initiative explore the growing use of artificial intelligence in the business landscape. For the last few years, AI has entered the consciousness of every industry. It has become part of mainstream conversations. Businesses of all shapes and sizes are considering artificial intelligence to solve real business problems.

Are you sick of your inefficient processes but don’t have time to document everything?

 

What should the first step be on the road to automation?

Take a good look at your business and determine what strategic pain points can be eliminated using AI-based solutions. AI can provide predictive analytics for your business. It can help you automate tasks. Through examination, you can determine the right objectives for your business. We feel that if you do just one each quarter, you will find yourself transforming in no time.

Define Your Sale Cycle

If you don’t have a pipeline report, you need one. A pipeline report is the single most important sales report that you can have. Many businesses that we have helped relied on a quote and sales report. Until we can set up a fully automated system, we have used the trusted yet old Microsoft excel. This works really well for brainstorming the sales cycle, identifying the stages, and setting KPI’s for your sales and support staff.

Zoho CRM software is an online Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system for managing your sales, marketing & support in a single system. Within it, you can create workflows that tell each team member when one task is finished and the next on due – putting it into their role type. This allows accountability and keeps track of time as well. Another reason to automate your business.

Look for Repetition to Automate your Business

To find automation opportunities, first, look for what your teams are doing that are repetitive. Then, look for an automated solution that can perform the task as well or better, while delivering exceptional service. Automation does not need to be complicated to be effective. A complicated system requires more maintenance and is vulnerable to breaking, but this still supports the argument to automate your business.

Emails are simple, yet often inconsistent. By setting up a template of responses, your staff can choose the appropriate response – keeping communication consistent and well written. It has been seen time and time again that busy staff can neglect both internal and external communication making the business look unprofessional and sloppy. Most email systems have a way. Zoho CRM can perform this too – another reason it comes highly recommended.

Outsource to Automate Your Business

No one does everything well so hire an agency or super-specialised “contractors” for specific tasks like social media, email marketing, and copywriting. These professional groups have their own usually expensive specialised automation tools and are experts in their use. Choosing the right one can be a challenge and care must be taken when selecting them and measuring their performance.

Do not forget that having a team that takes ownership of your business is paramount. Set clear policies and procedures, and encourage their input. Educate your team by providing supportive, ongoing mentorship coupled with knowledge assessments. Then, where possible, outsource other operations to trusted experts in areas like sales or bookkeeping. Many might think you cannot outsource sales, but there are many specialising in this area now on commission only basis. Bookkeeping and Accounting are seamless and what is often over-looked is management accounting. It is highly recommended that Outsourcing CFO functions are essential as good CFO command annual salaries not less than $250k p.a. Yet, Outsourced CFO’s now share their time across many businesses. Financials Accountants, often focus only on statutory lodgements rather than better business operations or economic resource allocation. If their sole focus is taxation, they are not a CFO. Seek out a CFO or an Economist!

Patience

Automation is not Magic. You don’t sign up for an automation system and voilà! Automation, requires time, budget and subsequent training & support. Once you have scoped the process, designed the framework and set it in place, the fruits of your labour will be revealed by the insights you gain from a deep dive into your business and its operations, the corrections you make on your journey enhancing your customers experience with you, and the end result of productivity, efficiency and better long-term profit margins. So if we gave you one piece of advice it would be to “automate your business!”

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