Today’s organizations increasingly rely on remote working, but many are struggling to make it really work. Remote working can cause a dramatic change to communication and collaboration, and processes can suffer. What’s more, in this challenging climate, there’s a lot riding on your ability to adapt successfully—and quickly.
We often write blogs that explore very specific uses for process automation, management and optimization. For instance, we’ll examine how workflow automation is used in the hospitality sector or in government. This time, however, we’re providing a broad overview of the four most important workflow automation benefits for businesses who may only be looking into the technology. So, without further ado, let’s get started.
1. Accelerating processes
We’ll begin with the most important of all. Streamlining your business processes is top of the list of workflow automation benefits. It’s the main reason why many organizations adopt the technology in the first place.
Greater organizational optimization is their aim: to improve business processes so they operate more efficiently. That’s because when processes are mapped out and digitized, with alerts to relevant stakeholders and easy-to-use digital forms and signatures, they progress much faster and with fewer bottlenecks than in the traditional manual route.
Instead of relying on easily missed or forgotten emails, or misconstrued word-of-mouth, automated digital workflows move through your organization swiftly and surely. Everyone who needs to act or be consulted is prompted to do their part, and then the process moves along to the next step, and ultimately to its timely completion.
When you improve business processes like this, they’re far less likely to get stuck in common bottlenecks—for instance, when a document must be transferred multiple times to be signed and countersigned before a process can proceed.
With workflow automation, stakeholders are simply alerted when it’s their turn, presented with the document and asked for their digital John Hancock. These workflows will need less management by staff (who often have far better things to do with their time). Automation ensures it gets done.
2. Improving accuracy
With today’s most advanced workflow technologies, you can now harness robotic process automation (RPA). This means an algorithm (or “bot”) can take over individual tasks in your processes—usually simple, repetitive work. The bots can operate a wide range of vital business software, performing the same actions an employee would, much faster and more accurately.
When a bot is conducting data entry, for instance, there’s no transposed letters or digits, no typos, and no missed details. That means no need to go back and spend time rechecking what’s been entered and correcting where necessary. That takes the pressure off your personnel who are, after all, only human. Reducing their workload and taking away the responsibility for accuracy are two workflow automation benefits they will definitely appreciate.
3. Boosting engagement
When your people don’t spend time on tedious, repetitive, manual tasks, and aren’t frustrated by slow processes and bottlenecks, they feel more satisfied, invested and engaged in their work. A happy employee is a more focused and productive one, whose time is now free for more rewarding and valuable work.
Gallup’s State of the American Workplace Report indicates that highly engaged teams show 21% greater profitability. And, in this survey by organizational consulting firm Korn Ferry, boredom was cited by one in three respondents as the main reason to leave their jobs. Engaged people, on the other hand, do better work and are more likely to stick around.
4. Creating a data trail
Finally, of all the workflow automation benefits, here’s one that the compliance folks will like the most. Instead of a cumbersome paper trail, your new, automated digital processes provide you with a data trail. This is easily accessed and consulted, completely comprehensive and totally transparent. It makes life easier for the auditors and those being audited: you can rest assured that everything is neatly ordered and above board.
This new, transparent data trail cuts down on administration and audit-season workloads, and it also reduces the compliance-related risks your business faces. Being prepared for the future is as good a reason to improve business processes as the savings in people-hours.
Ready to unlock all the workflow automation benefits?
We hope this blog has been useful. With an understanding of how workflow automation can benefit your business, you can begin discovering ways to implement it. The technology’s potential for digital transformation is vast. Once you start to explore, you’ll be surprised at the uses you find, and the benefits your organization will receive.
Want to learn more about workflow automation benefits and how Nintex can help your business reduce risk and increase efficiency, transparency, and engagement? Get in touch with our team today.