Your Business Automated. Now What?

Avoid an automation plateau with process mining tools and other handy technologies.

Written by Lou Bachenheimer
Published on Jul. 19, 2023
Your Business Automated. Now What?
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You’ve implemented automation into your business processes. Now what? In a digital-first world, we see the same scenario play out over and over — businesses adopt automation and then plateau.  

5 Benefits of Automation

  1. Enhanced employee experience
  2. Higher customer satisfaction
  3. Improved process accuracy, efficiency and speed
  4. Accelerated growth, market competitiveness and reduced costs
  5. Better compliance and cohesiveness across departments

In fact, according to our research, 78 percent of businesses are already using advanced technologies like intelligent automation to boost their growth, customer experience and all-around competitiveness. Still, many are failing to use their adopted automations to their fullest capacities, leading to unrealized returns on investment and missed opportunities for innovation and productivity. 

Our research also indicates that only 11 percent of organizations are confident in their automation strategy. Nearly 60 percent express concerns about poor implementation, 40 percent on coordination strategy and 27 percent about legacy technologies. 

The right approach and methodology are key to success. Businesses can modify their courses of action to break past their automation plateau, achieving new levels of competitiveness and unleashing growth. 

Read More About AutomationIntelligent Automation Can Help Startups Scale Faster

 

Assess Your Current State of Automation

Organizations need to assess their current state of automation and identify areas of ineffectiveness and inefficiency. Process mining, a technique using data-driven analysis software, can be used to discover opportunities for automation.  

From there, define a roadmap that prioritizes integration and scale and foster the right work culture. This helps organizations realize their automation potential and improve the customer and employee experience as they drive innovation and enhance revenue streams. 

Despite the vast majority of organizations already being on some form of an automation journey, most do not know how to use intelligent automation to its fullest capacity. A process assessment tool helps organizations evaluate the effectiveness of their existing use of robotic process automation (RPA) and other advanced technologies. It can also help them uncover the most valuable processes for automation.  

Process mining tools provide an overview of which process automations will be easiest to implement, offer the greatest returns on investment and drive specific business objectives. Organizations are then better able to plan their automation strategy, taking out unnecessary guesswork and saving costs and time.

Artificial intelligence-driven analysis prioritizes processes for automation according to businesses’ unique needs. Process and task mining tools monitor an organization’s activity on an ongoing basis, highlighting processes that would benefit from automation, already-automated processes not being used to their fullest capacity and manual processes that need to be adjusted before they can fully benefit from automation.  

These tools provide tangible proof of the value intelligent automation is delivering to an organization, with figures on time and money saved, and other critical insights. This helps CIOs, CTOs and IT teams communicate the direct benefits of digital transformation to senior management decision makers within their organization.  

 

Use Process Intelligence

Collecting and analyzing data across any system in your company is essential. Process intelligence delivers data driven discovery and end-to-end monitoring, offering predictions and areas for improvement. Business process management (BPM) software monitors, organizes and improves work in real time. 

Automating individual tasks saves some time and money and enhances aspects of customer and employee experience. But the competitive-boosting and transformative benefits of intelligent automation can only be achieved when robotic process automation is used to its fullest capacity across the organization. This means using RPA in conjunction with artificial intelligence, machine learning, natural language processing and other technologies. 

Combining these advanced technologies unleashes the power of intelligent automation. At its core, RPA provides the simple hands on keyboards required to accomplish basic tasks. Intelligent automation adds brains to those hands, so your digital workers can make complex decisions, understand natural language, read documents and more. 

Business process management enables organizations to automate entire end-to-end processes, rather than just disparate tasks. BPM software uses AI to prioritize and coordinate work, make decisions within its scope and adapt to changing conditions. Using data sourced from multiple channels, including phone calls, digital and handwritten text, BPM software also provides a visual overview that includes context, trends, opportunities and more. When employees are equipped with valuable insights and information, they are empowered to drive optimal business outcomes. 

For businesses beginning their digital transformation journeys, BPM ensures workflows operate as intended and adhere to established rules and conditions. For those further along on their journeys to maximize outcomes, it integrates seamlessly into existing processes and ensures processes are managed effectively.  

 

Use an Intelligent Automation Roadmap

An intelligent automation roadmap is critical for the success of any digital transformation effort. Without one, automation efforts tend to be haphazard and inefficient, reducing returns and benefits and costing unnecessary time. Organizations need to determine what they want to achieve from their digital transformation, how much are they willing to invest, and within what timeframe.  

Leaders are key in helping establish and implement the automation strategy. Their contribution determines whether the entire organization is onboard. 

To attain the right outcomes, human employees need to work collaboratively with digital workers and complement one another across workflows. This can only happen if employees recognize the value of digital workers and want to work with them.  

Leaders must relay the benefits of employing digital workers. These next-level software robots do mundane tasks and free up human employees to focus on more interesting, high-value work.

Leaders must relay the proven benefits of employing digital workers. These next-level software robots do mundane, repetitive tasks and free up human employees to focus on more interesting, high-value work. And, with digital workers taking on the burden of automatable tasks, it provides a window for organizations to drive other key business objectives with added resources, such as an ESG program or improving customer satisfaction scores.  

When it comes to deploying a digital workforce to deliver strategic benefits and reap the rewards of freeing up human workers to improve business efficiency, an implementation methodology such as Blue Prism’s Robotic Operating Model (ROM) is essential.  

The ROM provides the framework, foundations and guidance to help organizations discover, deliver and service their digital workforce. It helps organizations identify the people needed to successfully digitalize and outlines the technology foundation on which to build a robust platform for new virtual teams. 

More Reading About Automation21 Examples of Robotic Process Automation

 

Oversee Every Step of the Way

A center of excellence (CoE) establishes basic procedures and best practices and provides governance. The CoE helps ensure that each business unit, under the stewardship of its respective leaders, drives desired business outcomes through digitalization and avoiding automation plateaus. 

Leaders might consider using professional services to optimize automation. Whether laying the foundations for success, scaling a digital workforce to deliver more or simply wanting to automate smarter and faster, consulting and delivery services can help maximize investments in intelligent automation.  

Take stock of your automation efforts and adapt your approach to ensure you are driving results and not plateauing on your automation journeys.

According to McKinsey, the biggest challenge when it comes to automation is understanding the opportunities for automation. Organizations leading the way in their automation efforts are more likely to embark on an integrated approach that involves sweeping rather than incremental changes

Process assessing and intelligence tools empower organizations with comprehensive insight into the best strategies and opportunities. Take stock of your current automation efforts and adapt your approach to ensure you are driving results and not plateauing on your automation journeys.

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