Automation may sound like the latest buzzword in business. But it’s a very real thing that can save your company oodles of time and money.
We’ve covered the benefits of business automation in a previous article. But you can’t experience those benefits if you don’t implement automation into your business effectively. Here are five tips on introducing automation into your business.
Tip #1 – Involve the Entire Team
There are a lot of horror stories that your team can conjure up about upcoming automation. They may worry that it will lead to some of them losing their jobs, which can make it all the more difficult to get them on board with the process. And a team that doesn’t support the idea makes it all the more difficult to implement automation successfully.
To remedy this, be transparent with your team from the off. Discuss why you’re looking to bring automation in and involve the team in every step of the process. Ask for their feedback and help them understand how automation benefits them, as well as the company.
Tip #2 – Define Success
Without an end goal, every plan is doomed to failure.
It’s the same for automation. If you don’t know what you want to achieve from the process, there’s no point trying to implement it. You’ll just be firing into the dark in the vain hope that you hit a target.
Automation only works when you know what you want to automate and what the process needs to achieve for you. Define these two things and you’ll have a much better chance of a successful implementation.
Tip #3 – Plan Well Ahead
Automation isn’t just something that you can adopt with the flick of the switch. As with any wholesale business process change, it requires several months of planning. Remember that automation may change the way that your people work. They need to know what they’re doing, which usually means they need training.
The key is to plan well ahead. Create a defined schedule for implementing automation and ensuring that everyone in the company adapts to the new processes. Many choose to stagger the implementation so that they can introduce their people to some new processes before unveiling the entire system.
Tip #4 – Don’t Only Look at Broken Processes
You may have a few processes in mind for automation that you can easily define as broken. They’re slow, clunky, and lead to mistakes.
That’s the obvious stuff. What isn’t so obvious is how you can use automation to drive efficiency in a process that actually works well. The old saying of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” doesn’t apply with automation. There may be a chance to improve a good process with the proper use of automation.
Tip #5 – Prioritise Security
Automation means the introduction of an array of new security protocols into your business. You’re likely using new systems, which gives malicious people a chance to cause issues if you don’t understand them correctly.
Proper security starts with your supplier. Make sure that they understand the system, the security features that it needs, and how to teach you more about it. Don’t skimp on security. Remember that automation makes things easier for you, which makes things easier for attackers when you’re not prepared to defend your new systems against them.
Of course, the best advice is to work with a company that understands business process automation and can help you to define what you need from it. That’s where Imobisoft can help. Call our team today to learn more about how you can use automation to your advantage.
However, you may not full understand the potential of automation. In particular, many business owners don’t realise just how many processes they can automate as long as they have the right guidance.
That’s why we’ve decided to highlight four processes that you can automate to experience a range of time and cost benefits.
Process #1 – Sales Leads Processing
Your sales leads likely already go into a CRM of some description. But it’s your sales staff who have to determine where that lead is in your sales funnel. That means a lot of time messing around with the CRM and less time spent talking to customers.
Automation can help with this because it can identify where the lead is on your funnel. You can even use it to do things like automatically send emails to customers at certain stages or remind you to call hot leads at certain times.
Process #2 – Document Reviews
Many businesses produce a range of standard documents that they send out to clients. While this may primarily feature templated content, there are usually sections that you need to fill out with certain details. Putting the wrong information into a document or contract could sour a business relationship.
With automation, you can automatically check documents against the information that you have in your system. This lowers the risk of human error causing issues. Some forms of automation are so advanced that they can even generate and edit documents for you.
Process #3 – Customer Service
This is the process that most think about when they’re considering automation.
There are many aspects of your customer service that you can automate. The use of a chatbot on your website allows you to automate the answering of common questions. When combined with an AI, business automation also allows your systems to learn more about customer requirements. This leads to even more detailed answers.
However, automation can also be as simple as recording phone messages for people who call into the business. You can use an automated system to manage the call and direct it to the right person, where appropriate.
Process #4 – Task Assignment
You may have a large people that rely on you to assign tasks for them every day. Depending on the size of your team, this can take several hours. You need to make sure the right people are free at the right times and manually assign all of the work.
Automation takes care of that. Simply enter tasks into the system and allow it to take care of the assigning for you. Automated systems also offer greater transparency. Plus, they can send out reminders and track progress for different tasks.
The Final Word
Automation saves time and ensures your business runs more efficiently. You can use it to make sure you stay on top of lead progress and to keep your people working as productively as possible.
Now, you just need to get started. Get in touch with the Imobisoft team today to discover how business automation can help you.
Big Data is a huge concept in the modern technological sector. With so many ways to gather information from your users and products, it can feel like your company is overwhelmed with data. However, Big Data analysis can also help you to determine the path that your company takes. Without it, you may fall behind your competition. As a result, you need to know what big data mistakes you should avoid when you collect data.
Mistake #1 – Relying on Your Instincts
Your instincts may guide some of your business decisions, but you can’t rely on them when it comes to Big Data.
In fact, many people make the mistake of trying to limit the data sets that they look at, primarily with the goal of matching the data to their instincts. This leads to a phenomenon called “confirmation bias”, in which you actively look for data that supports your views, rather than accepting what the data actually says.
Mistake #2 – Collecting all of the Data
Having said that, it’s still not a great idea to collect every scrap of data you can find without any plan for how you’ll analyse it. This is what leads to that overwhelmed feeling that many companies experience when working with Big Data.
Before you start trying to leverage Big Data to your advantage, create a set of questions that you want to use the data to answer. This roadmap will guide you when it comes to what data your organisation needs to collect.
Mistake #3 – Take Action on What You Find
Another common Big Data mistake is sitting on the information you find, rather than taking action on it. Confirmation bias often plays a role here too. If an organisation finds that the data tells them something that doesn’t mesh with what they thought it would, they may be slow to take action.
However, you must remember that your data changes constantly, often in line with the trends in your market. Collecting and analysing the data is important, but it doesn’t mean anything if your organisation doesn’t react to the data it gathers.
Mistake #4 – Not Checking the Quality of the Data
Not all of the data that your organisation collects will be of a high enough quality to use in determining future policy. In fact, low quality data can actively damage your organisation.
Many people don’t realise this when trying to analyse Big Data. Instead, they think that every piece of data they collect is relevant. You need big enough data sets to draw accurate conclusions, but if that data comes from unreliable sources you may end up doing more damage than good.
Mistake #5 – Not Using the Cloud
This may seem like a simple mistake, but many people still don’t understand the infrastructural demands that using Big Data creates. Instead of moving to a cloud-based system, they try to keep everything in house.
The cost of maintaining so much infrastructure should show how much of a mistake this is. If you’re trying to use Big Data without adopting cloud-based technology, you’re organisation will lose thousands of pounds.
Every piece of software needs to be tested before you can release it to the general public. Testing reveals the little bugs that could prevent the software from working, and ensures your product has the polish it needs to draw an audience.
For mobile app development, testing is even more important. One false step in your mobile app strategy could result in the failure of the whole endeavour. Mobile customers won’t give you a chance to fix mistakes that shouldn’t have happened. They’ll just move onto the next app, and yours will be left in the dust.
As a result, you need to avoid key mobile app testing blunders like the ones below.
Focusing Too Much on the User Interface
We all know how important a good user interface (UI) is to a mobile app, but it’s not the only thing that matters. Unfortunately, some mobile app developers forget this fact. They get so tied up in creating a strong interface that they forget that the app behind it needs to work.
You need to test the UI extensively. However, you must also make sure that everything happens as it’s supposed to when you’re using the app. Your users won’t care about a fancy UI if the app loses their data every time they log out.
Forgetting that Mobile Isn’t Web
Many app developers have moved from traditional web or software development. While some of their testing methodologies can carry over, others don’t apply to the mobile space.
The key thing to remember is that mobile users are on the go. If you limit your testing to the office, you fail to take into account how the app performs when the user moves from place to place. This is especially important if the app makes use of geo-tracking, or similar mobile-only features.
Outsourcing the Testing
Now outsourcing isn’t necessarily a mistake by itself. However, outsourcing an app for testing without providing plenty of detail about the app, its purpose, and how it works is.
Outsources testers will just give the app a quick run through and submit a report if they don’t have any guidance. If you intend to outsource your app for testing, draw up some guidelines for the testers to follow. Tell them what you want to look out for, and how to use the app properly. Mention user flows, and focus the testing around optimisation for mobile users.
Trying to Automate the Whole Thing
Automation is useful when used correctly. It can save you a lot of time that you would have spent on simple tasks, but you can’t rely on it to test a mobile app to the fullest. For example, automation can’t take various mobile issues into account, such as the app’s dependency on its API, how various networks perform, and how the sensors inside the mobile device react to the app.
If you do use automated checks at any point for testing, make sure you build them with the code in mind. Poorly built automated checks can thwart your efforts, even if you use them correctly.
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