Manual is out, automation is in. Entrepreneurs around the world are racing to streamline their processes and get the most from their team - there’s no time for manual tasks in the modern day business workflow.
Worldwide organizations have spent a lot of time looking for ways to make processes run more smoothly and efficiently, making sure the time, money and resources thrown into the business are used in the best and most effective way possible. Business process automation has been around for a long time, but now companies are really taking notice of just how instrumental it can be in a business’ success story.
We’ve seen the myriad ways automation has changed the world around us over the past several centuries. The assembly line of a car manufacturer now has little to no human presence thanks to the introduction of robotics and automation - our vehicles are put together with intelligent software and a few very handy machines. As far back as the industrial revolution, the manufacturing world has experienced a huge shift towards robotic manufacturing, which has allowed businesses to create, assemble and develop products without the cost - and lack of efficiency - of a human workforce.
But how is automation changing the business world outside of manufacturing? There’s hardly a sector today that hasn’t seen a significant increase in production efficiency from digital disruption, thanks in large part to automation, machine learning and the rise of artificial intelligence.
There’s been a huge cultural shift from manpower to machine muscle in offices around the world. The result is a commerce sphere that runs like a well-oiled machine, weeding out the organizations that don’t adapt quickly enough. These old-school organizations are then pitted against new-age businesses in keen competition for the best solution, whether it involves automation or not (and it usually does).
Automation: creating the global office
Technology is liberating today’s workforce. Thanks to automated platforms and integrated software, our offices are fluid and global teams can collaborate across geographies in real-time without hassle. We don’t have to be physically present at a brainstorm to give our valid input anymore, which makes for more productive and effective ideation sessions. Team conferences can be inclusive of team members that span all four corners of the world - with such powerful communicative platforms, businesses can practice transparency and create a community and team culture that inspires employees to invest in their work. Automation is paving the way for true globalization in the business world.
The Terminator Effect: are the robots taking over?
Robotics and automation are creating a world where many human labors are made redundant. While this has been a huge boost for global businesses, there’s definitely a fear that automation and robotics will make the human race redundant, causing major economic problems.
Let’s look at this rationally: while machine learning is very advanced, it’s never going to replace all that creative talent in your team. Your virtual assistant will never have the ability for complex thinking that your real-world, human employees have. In fact, the automated platforms available to businesses are designed to let creatives get back to what’s important - those ideas outside of a robot’s ability. Your team can focus on their actual job and let the computers take care of menial tasks, like automated transcription.
How is automation shaping business? Here are some practical examples:
Help with HR
At the core of all automated systems is the power to manage and define huge sets of data. This is key when it comes to gathering data on the experience of your team at both higher and more granular levels. Understanding how your employees experience the workplace and the challenges they face without having to take a notepad and pen to private - often intrusive - meetings is powerful to any HR team.
Invoices, number crunching and payment processing are tedious and easy to mess up. Thanks to automated software, many finance departments have a system that extracts all data from invoices and puts it into a payments system to get things rolling - fewer frustrated freelancers waiting for their check!
Customer service support
Chatbots may not have the best reputation, but they’re certainly becoming smarter and they’re definitely more than equipped to sift through the volumes of customer queries that land in your company’s support inbox every day. Simple chatbot questions can help you filter for complaints, payment queries and new business, directing customers to the right information in no time at all. They’ll thank you for it.
Your assistant can get on with organizing your calendar (within an automated system, of course) because they’re no longer needed to take minutes at endless meetings and manually transcribe the follow-up. Simply voice-record your meeting and use the power of Trint to transcribe your audio to text in no time at all. You’ll even be able to search transcripts for topics.