In an increasingly digital corporate world, organisations should look at what processes can be automated to improve business operations.
The immediate and long-term goals for improving processes and reducing optimising workflow should not be underestimated. Businesses of all sizes should take the time to identify document processes that might be weighing the business down. The result of doing that can mean a reduction in paperwork, data entry and duplication.
There are five business processes that you need to be automating:
1. Email capture
Capturing emails and keeping them with customer files easily is now possible. This includes the automatic upload of an entire email chain. Using an automatic capture workflow, which links future correspondence directly against a selected job or customer, removes the silo of individual inboxes, localises storage, and reduces the risk of not having visibility or access to customer correspondence.
eForms provide a way of digitising existing paper-based forms, adding the ability to include data validation, business rules, and application integration to the form. In addition, forms can be filled out and processed online or offline, letting remote workers complete business processes, safety checks and compliance requirements regardless of location, connectivity, or device. eForms means organisations no longer have to wait for information, worry about lost paperwork, navigate indecipherable handwriting, or deal with double handling or data entry. They can also be linked with a document management system and integrated with enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems or other business applications.
3. Visitor sign in and contractor compliance management
By digitising management of visitors and contractors, organisations can manage risk and compliance by automatically verifying contractor credentials, insurance, and licenses. They can also more easily locate and manage onsite guests in case of emergency. Digitising the sign-in process also reduces the cost of paper sign-in books and impresses visitors with a modern and professional digital alternative.
4. Accounts payable (AP)
AP processes are typically a cumbersome necessity. Automation means that AP no longer needs to be a resource-heavy burden by improving speed, visibility, accuracy, and control over processes, saving time, money, and resources spent on tedious tasks. A by-product is also happier staff, suppliers and customer as a result of the process efficiencies.
5. HR processes and onboarding
Managing people and associated documentation is often paper-based and manual, creating challenges in day-to-day administration. It costs around US$25,000 to fill one three-drawer filing cabinet. Additionally, companies spend a further US$2100 a year on average to maintain it. Organisations should replace physical storage and manual handling by digitising existing paperwork, providing complete visibility and instant access to up-to-date records in one secure system. Digitisation and automation not only reduces double-handling and repeated data entry while speeding up the process, it also enables automatic checks to be implemented ensuring no steps are missed.
Overall, you should be looking for solutions that deliver efficiencies, improve business processes, and assist in compliance requirements.
Scott Crosby, CEO, Upstream