March 17, 2021

Growing Your Business? How Process Automation Can Help And Why You Need It Sooner Than Later

By Riccardo Conte, serial entrepreneur, founder of Virtus Flow, a no-code digital process automation platform…

By Riccardo Conte, serial entrepreneur, founder of Virtus Flow, a no-code digital process automation platform that streamlines work through process automation.

A common misconception due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic is that companies are shutting down or performing less efficiently. While this is the case in certain industries, operations like marketing, online banking, mobile applications and online ordering have been booming — leading to substantial growth for many. 

With unexpected global changes coming in from all angles, business preparedness took the spotlight, making organizations realize the importance of powerful, reliable processes. For those who saw unprecedented shifts in the market, were they prepared for overnight growth as much as they were for hardship? This is where strong business operations must come into play.

Inc.com explained it best when looking at the eight biggest dangers of a business growing too quickly: “Getting bigger means that you need to get more organized. Working fast and loose may have been fine for your small team of superstars, but it won’t work as well with a bigger group. As your ranks grow and positions that were filled by individuals transform into teams of people, the need to stay organized becomes amplified,” they stated.

Similarly, studies have shown that companies lose 20% to 30% in revenue every year due to inefficiencies. If these inefficiencies become the norm at your organization, not only will your business remain stagnant, but it will eventually fail — unless process automation is on your radar.

Why Your Company Needs Process Automation In 2021

Certain industries and companies are prospering in spite of the pandemic. Whether it was a foreseeable increase in sales or completely unexpected growth, there must be a plan in place to ensure this growth remains. Process automation is that plan. 

Process automation allows businesses to stay afloat in the ever-changing digital world through flexible systems that support any situation that may arise. This is key as we turn into a faster-paced society and companies no longer have the luxury of time. 

For example, when indoor dining closed in early 2020, restaurants had to rethink the way they handled their business. If they were not available through DoorDash, GrubHub, Uber Eats or other mobile applications, they were not able to successfully deliver their food to customers, therefore hindering revenue. Without processes in place to make this switch, quickly and efficiently, they were destined to fail. In fact, it is estimated that up to 85% of independently owned restaurants could close due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

This same concept applies to any other business sector, as unexpected situations often arise and they must ensure business continuity at all costs.

When using the proper process automation tools, companies can benefit from processes involving:

Marketing and sales, for functions like email, social media, reporting and tracking to optimize efforts

IT and technical services, such as automated maintenance and status reports, problem ticketing and resolutions

Administrative duties that tend to be tedious and time-consuming

Logistics, an operation that often looks for support in shipment routing, labeling, ordering and tracking

Human resources for employee onboarding, benefits and payroll processing

Getting The Most Out Of Process Automation Solutions

Most companies use automation tools for a multitude of business operations. Many of these tools are efficient and cost-saving and remove the need for error-prone data entry. But how do they support the company in the long-term? To truly benefit from business process automation (BPA), there are three key areas to consider:

1. Stay away from data silos. Data silos are pieces or collections of information only available to one group or organization. When this occurs within the same company, there can be damaging consequences, from unfinished work to a hostile company culture due to a lack of transparency and accountability.

2. Look for integrations with current platforms. With dozens of applications and attempted process automation tools in the market, uniformity can be tough. Yet integration continues to be a key aspect to get the most out of your process automation solutions, as these automation tools can help employees avoid repetitive tasks, improve customer service and ultimately help in the digital transformation of a company. Even though simply purchasing an app won’t add structure, consistency or centralized control to your company, this can be the first step toward an organizational shift.

3. Evaluate your business needs and forecasts. What works for the marketing department might not necessarily work for others, and a solution that works for a small company might not necessarily work for a multinational corporation. To ensure your needs are met, evaluate expected growth, departmental goals and your nice-to-haves. Once you have a list, make sure to find the BPA platform that best supports this list.

From Segmented Operations To End-to-End Process Automation

We’ve briefly covered the dangers of inconsistent and separate tools and how unstructured data can harm a company by generating miscommunication, unwanted repetition and even higher operating costs.

Conversely, with end-to-end process automation, you’ll be able to:

• Oversee the entire lifecycle of each process journey

• Identify sources of waste and understand whether additional steps are needed for improvement

• Improve interdepartmental consistency and transparency by easily managing decentralized teams

• Make better projections by having relevant information all in one place

• Reduce process time and heighten productivity

• Gain greater customer satisfaction, and more!

These benefits will lead to healthy company culture, a more efficiently run business and cost reductions for the entire company. So why waste time?

Change Without Disruption Is Possible

As averse to change as companies can be, by implementing process automation into your growing business, you’ll gain the chance to better the organization, streamline each process and ensure all your systems are running smoothly — all while maintaining the core of your business. The right process automation tools can alleviate dreadful paperwork, harmful human errors and many more day-to-day issues that prevent you from thriving at what you do.

Intelligent automation is the way of the future, and as your company grows, the benefits will only increase. Simply put, process automation is the way to be successful in 2021 and beyond.