We may not yet be living in a world of flying cars and teleportation, but artificial intelligence is transforming the way that we do business. Automating tasks and systems not only produces more accurate results, but also allows you to maximise your resources and create a more efficient enterprise.
Let’s take a look at how automation can help you build a better business.
What is Business Automation?
Simply put, business automation means using technology to automate tasks in your business, so that an app or software program does it, rather than a human. It allows you to put sections of your business on autopilot to ensure that no tasks get delayed or neglected.
The Advantages of Automation
There are many ways in which automation can benefit your business. For one thing, it frees up your team’s time, allowing them to focus on the most important tasks. Time is a limited resource and automation can help you to invest it more wisely.
Automation also helps your team members stay more engaged, too. Tedious tasks result in boredom and even a decline in morale. Automating menial tasks allows your team to focus on more stimulating work that does more to move the needle for your business.
In addition, automation eliminates human error, which saves you both time and money. By allowing you to do more with less, it is also hugely beneficial when it comes to scaling up. Finally, a more efficient business also means that as a business owner you will be able to step back with greater ease and enjoy a better work-life balance.
Tasks to Automate
Any business can benefit from the power of automation - it’s not just for tech companies and industry giants. Some of the most popular tasks to automate include:
Staying on top of your invoicing is difficult, but you need to send invoices out on time and keep a close eye on who has and hasn’t paid in order to maintain a healthy cash flow. Accounting software can send your invoices and payment reminders automatically for you so that you don’t have to waste time chasing up clients. It can also enable easy online payments for your clients, and calculate late fees for you.
Again, cloud accounting software makes it quick and easy to keep track of your spending so that you don’t miss out on any deductions or miscalculate your margins. You can connect your chosen software program to your business bank accounts and upload receipts on-the-go by snapping a quick photo on your smartphone.
You can automate a big chunk of your customer service but using chatbots rather than human customer service reps to answer customers’ questions. This saves a lot of time for your customer service employees and allows them dedicate more time to complex issues rather than repeatedly answering the same ten FAQs.
These days, businesses need a social media presence just to seem legitimate. However, when used correctly social media is a powerful and low-cost way of generating brand awareness and attracting new leads. The downside? It’s very time-consuming.
Thankfully, you can use automation to schedule your social media posts months in advance, which allows you to create content in bulk. This means that your social media manager doesn’t have to worry about logging in and posting manually every day, and can instead concentrate on strategy and growth.
Automation can greatly speed up and simplify the process of lead generation.
You can use chatbot software to gather contact information for new visitors to your website and then automate nurturing email sequences to move them along the customer journey.
You can also use a lead management platform to keep a track of all your leads and where they currently are on their customer journey so that they receive the right content at the right time.
There is an array of great project management tools out there, such as Asana, Trello and Basecamp, and they feature many automation capabilities. These platforms can track deadlines and deliverables for you, schedule reminders and forward necessary information. This makes project management simpler, easier and more efficient, allowing the team members involved to focus on producing excellent work.
Automation has the power to save time, reduce costs and increase productivity. There are many different ways you can automate your business processes, from automating customer service with chatbots to using lead management software for marketing purposes. With so much promise at stake, it’s worth exploring automation options in more detail so that you can create a more efficient, productive and profitable business.