Why are organizations turning to business process automation (BPA)? To save time and resources.
We’ve all heard the catchphrase “do more with less” probably a bit too much over the past several years. Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella came up with a better way of saying this:
“Doing more with less means applying technology to amplify what you’re able to do across an organization so you can differentiate and build resilience.”
Business process automation is a way to put “do more with less” into practice by leveraging technology to amplify abilities throughout your organization. At SkyPoint Cloud, we help develop automated business processes using Microsoft Power Automate and Power Automate Desktop—or, when needed—custom applications.
It’s rewarding to see people do more valuable tasks with their time rather than just doing the same thing over and over again.
My goal is to inspire you to improve your own internal processes by looking at some real-world examples of automated business processes and how BPA can help you save time and cut costs.
Why is Business Process Automation Important?
There are only so many hours in the workday to get things done—and you want to maximize your team’s time. Organizations use BPA to automate repetitive tasks, giving their team members time to focus on more complex, high-value tasks.
In our current work environment, there are so many variables that affect organizational productivity and agility.
On a global level, economic uncertainty, supply chain issues, and cyber threats have forced organizations to be very cautious when allocating resources. Additionally, changing hybrid work environments, customer expectations, and data management requirements mean that your internal processes might look drastically different than they were just a few years ago.
In an environment with so many moving parts, automated business processes give your team some stability. Rather than having your team members drowning in repetitive and mundane tasks, you can build a custom application to tackle these tasks.
BPA enables your team to focus on more meaningful high-level tasks, which helps people feel more valued. Happy and productive team members do their best work—and they’re also less likely to leave your organization, which has a positive impact on the reduction of employee turnover.
The ability to truly “do more with less” with BPA has many lasting organizational benefits, but a big one worth mentioning is “the great unknown.” Whether that’s a pandemic or a recession, BPA helps future-proof your business for unforeseen economic challenges.
Use Cases For Business Process Automation
There’s no shortage of potential use cases for BPA, especially with the advanced capabilities of modern automation technology. Here are some real-world examples of automated business processes that will help you understand the possibilities.
Organizations are leveraging robotic process automation (RPA) to automate the process of invoice input into an account’s payable system.
By leveraging optical character recognition and modern AI processing, along with business process automation, you can actually scan invoices and have the system read emails, extract attached invoice files, and read the key fields.
Everything is put into the accounting system so that checks can be approved and generated. All a human needs to do is review the data and then approve or reject the invoice.
By automating these tasks, you get each invoice processed faster while increasing accuracy. That time savings also results in cost savings. Even if your team only spends two minutes keying in each invoice, this might add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars in labor costs each year.
Setting up business appointments is another essential task that is often very time-consuming, whether you’re setting up B2B meetings or B2C service appointments. To set just one appointment, you might need to send multiple emails or make multiple phone calls.
One of our clients was heavily involved in setting up appointments—and this wasn’t simply just using Outlook to quickly schedule something. They actually had to look into their vendors’ calendaring system and sometimes their vendors’ vendors’ calendaring system to put together a series of appointments that everybody could attend.
They were spending about $70,000 annually just scheduling appointments.
This is a task that can easily be automated with an application. With automated appointment settings, customers simply select from a calendar of available appointment times, answer a few key questions, and set up an appointment without any manual input from your team at all.
Webpage Scraping and Data Entry
Scraping a webpage for content and data can be an incredibly tedious task, even for the fastest data entry professionals.
Automated tools scrape webpages for your desired pieces of content and data in minutes, saving your team hundreds of hours of work that would normally take weeks or even months to complete.
With an automated webpage scraping tool, you’ll get completely accurate data that’s easy to process and work with. Whenever you need to enter data into a web interface, BPA has you covered!
How Much Are You Spending Without BPA?
People should only have to focus on tasks where they can bring their unique human value.
Not only does BPA save your organization time, but it also results in serious long-term cost savings. You may not even realize how much you’re spending to run your internal processes manually, which is why it’s important to add up your time and resource costs.
We recently created a Cost Calculator to help you estimate recurring costs for your manual processes. Try out the calculator, then reach out to the SkyPoint Cloud team to find out how we can help you automate your business processes to lower your costs.