5 Long-Term Benefits of Workflow Automation

Workflow automation is a valuable tool for any business but invaluable at the larger scale.

Everyone has work that must get done, and workflow automation helps reduce – or even eliminate – the time that needs to be spent on repetitive processes. This means everyday work gets done faster, and employees spend more time on their primary tasks

In enterprise organizations, workflow automation saves thousands of hours every year.

Below are five long-term benefits of using workflow automation:

1.  Fewer Errors

There is one thing even a well-managed company can’t escape: human error. It is impossible to anticipate, and when it happens, companies spend time and money fixing it.

Human error can never be completely eliminated in the workforce, but we can make it more avoidable.

Workflow automation can send requests to group members that require a human response to move the process forward. This can range from a simple accept/reject button, to a detailed comment. These easy tasks reduce the chance for human error.

Instead of forgetting to send that email or attaching an outdated file, you only need to give authorization and the work gets moved forward. Employees can focus on the work they are trained to do, and their automated workflows can handle the repetitive tasks.

2.  Less Risk

Making fewer errors also means less risk.

Finance, HR, and Sales & Marketing are all departments that stand to lose the most from human error.

An error in the Sales department can mean a losing a potential customer or deal, while one in Human Resources can mean a potential legal issue.

These departments want the most risk mitigation possible, and workflow automation does that. It covers work that doesn’t require human input or analysis, and that means more focus on primary tasks. Automatically handling repetitive tasks also allows employees to spend more time improving business-critical skills.

Long-term, this means better trained employees, fewer human errors and less risk.

3.  Saves Time

With workflow automation handling repetitive tasks, employees save time. One of the best examples of time-saving is in hospitals.

Say you get injured and go to the hospital. The doctor prescribes your medication and leaves to help other patients. The nurse goes to the computer, enters the prescription for billing, and brings you the dosage to take. Sometime that day, the nurse must go track down the same doctor to sign a slip confirm administration of that specific drug and dosage.

These are called voice order authorizations (VOA), and must be done for every patient who is prescribed medication. Some hospitals even have specific people whose job is to take these VOAs and track down doctors for their signatures.

Workflow automation is already solving this problem.

Hospitals can utilize workflows that trigger when a nurse enters the drug information for billing. After that, it sends a notification directly to the doctor’s phone to confirm or deny the dosage on the spot. Administrative and nursing staff won’t need to spend time away from patients, doctors have more freedom, and the whole system is faster.

In the long-term, doctors and nurses hone their skills with patients and waste less time on administrative work. (Here are some other benefits of workflow automation for healthcare organizations.)

4.  Increases Productivity

Saving time leads to increased productivity. If you spend less time doing repetitive work, you can use that time elsewhere.

Instead of sending notifications or emailing request forms, employees can give important projects more time and attention.

According to a report by Forrester, employees who used workflow automation saw an 8 to 15 percent increase in productivity. Workflow automation makes it easier to increase productivity, as well create solutions to the issues they face every day.

With Nintex workflow automation, it’s easy for users to build the solutions they want with little or no coding knowledge.

Most employees apply for their jobs because they want to do the work that matters. Creating calendar events and managing long email chains is not the kind of work engineers want to spend time on. Workflow automation lets employees spend time on work they like, and that means better productivity.

5.  Easily Scalable

At first, workflow automation can seem daunting. It might be hard to understand what you can do with it, but as you learn the software and get more comfortable with it, possibilities open up. Many Nintex customers say that once they begin building workflows, they can’t stop. And we’ve designed our platform so that they don’t have to.

Each department has different needs, but all can benefit from workflow automation.

Legal could automate sales contracts, finance could automate PTO requests and HR could automate employee onboarding. All of these get automated, and over time improved.

Once a simple workflow is made, more can be added on as needed. Workflow automation also becomes easier to learn the longer you use it. Over time, it becomes easier to automate repetitive work and focus on other tasks.

Fixing problems becomes easier, too.

Previously, if you had a software issue, you would contact IT. If they happen to be busy, then your solution would get delayed. With workflow automation, you build the system so you understand how it works and what to change.

This translates to employees who understand the programs they use and are empowered to fix and improve them, all without holding down IT.

 

Direction of Long-Term Workflow

Now that workflow automation is part of day-to-day business practices, it’s here to stay.

In the long-term, it reduces risk and errors, saves time, increases productivity and is easy to improve. Every business strives for these results, and workflow automation provides them. A successful company needs to focus on the short-term but plan for the long-term. And the value a company gains with workflow automation is immediate and only improves over time.

Your company is in it for the long haul, and workflow automation is, too.

 

Try Nintex free for 30 days and see how workflow automation can help you!

Galen Rodgers

Galen Rodgers is Director of Sales at Nintex and has been working in the Information Technology industry for nearly 20 years. Galen has worked in many capacities in his career from IT technician, sales, management to entrepreneur. He has a passion for technology, sales and business process efficiency.