How Manual Processes Affect A Company’s Growth
Whether it’s email, payroll or database systems, most companies have already implemented some form of digital automation into their operations. But in an increasingly digital world, there are still many companies that use manual processes to handle other various tasks and responsibilities—and quite frankly, that’s hampering their long-term growth.
From creating double work to working in disconnected silos, here’s how manual processes hinder long-term growth—and how workflow automation can help:
A redundancy is a lot like it sounds: it’s a process, or step of a process, that has been unintentionally repeated. And while redundancies may seem negligible at first they can easily add up down the line. For example, let’s say Ron must fill out a form prior to a preliminary account audit, and he fills out the form just before leaving on vacation. Sarah then takes over the audit on Monday, doesn’t notice the form has been completed and fills out the second one. Two weeks down the line, Dana from accounting sees two forms, and doesn’t know which one to use—and thus the chain reaction of confusion and double work continues.
Wasting time on double work eats away at efficiency. And the further you travel down the line, the more confusion and miscommunication it creates—especially when multiple forms exist or multiple people are working on the same task. However, workflow automation systems are designed to eliminate redundancies by keeping responsibilities organized in one place. It offers greater visibility to the pipeline—whether team members are on vacation or in office.
Improper Systems Integration
Sure, you may have implemented plenty of computer and automation systems already, but you can still run into some trouble if those systems don’t work well together. How many times in your life have you had to copy and paste data from one software into another? If you lose count, you’re not alone—and this comes down to poor systems integration.
If your employees are spending hours converting files, copying and pasting—or finding ways to stuff data from one system into another—your company is experiencing losses. To fix this, workflow automation systems help platforms work in tandem with each other. No copying and pasting, and no lost work hours.
Standardization vs. Compartmentalization
If your company is broken into teams or departments, there can be a disconnect between teams. If your company is especially large, various departments might use entirely different workflows and/or computer systems. Having teams operating out of sync can cause massive delays and confusion on large scale projects. By utilizing automation, you can standardize processes across teams.
Often times, teams that are too disconnected are unable to share best practices and knowledge that would be valuable for other teams. By offering a standardized, workflow automation system, you can ensure that your teams work together seamlessly to boost the bottom line.
Paper systems and poor organizational structures often lead to bottlenecks in various processes and procedures. The weakest link in a process defines the speed of the entire procedure; if one step takes three times as long as any of the other steps, your process is going to be equally as slow. Conversely, if that individual step is sped up, it will make your process that much faster.
Too often, companies and organizations overlook true bottlenecks in their organization. This is often due to a sense of “that’s the way we’ve always done it.” By implementing automation systems in place of manual systems, many preconceptions are challenged (and often broken), allowing companies to overcome bottlenecks they may not have been aware of.
Everyone knows that computers do tasks faster than humans do them (for the most part). But there are other ways that manual processes really bog down a company. By implementing alternative solutions for manual procedures, you can expect a boost in company productivity and even morale.