How Automation Can Improve Profitability

Automation

Running a successful business is all about finding an edge over your competitors; being able to provide a service no-one else can match and attracting your ideal client base. There are multiple factors involved in this simple premise, however, which is what makes being an entrepreneur such a complex and exciting experience. A great deal of the success of your business will depend on the decisions you make and the judgement you use to reach those decisions. Some decisions are easier to make than others, and when it comes to finding ways to rise above the competition, automation is becoming a go-to technology.

Free up staff time for other roles

A high proportion of staff time is frequently spent on administrative tasks that could be run quickly and efficiently by automation software. Email systems that send out communications to predefined recipients at allocated times are becoming recognised as a simple and effective way to deal with email lists. The software is capable of automating almost every aspect of your email marketing, freeing up considerable staff time. As another example, payroll can be a time-consuming task that has to be done, but does nothing in practical terms towards building your business. Even if your staff numbers wouldn’t justify an entire accounting system for dealing with payroll, you can use online software services such as a check stub maker to suit your needs, freeing up time for the tasks that require staff input and therefore making more productive uses of human resources.

Improve speed and accuracy

Taking book-keeping as an example, one person – or a team in a bigger business – could take several hours to complete the entries and calculations required for the business accounts each day. An automated accounting system can reduce this to mere minutes, depending on the processes you use. It also eliminates the need for extensive cross-checking and supervision. Providing the system is set up correctly and programmed to perform the tasks exactly as required, you can eliminate human error from the process too. You then have a system that works constantly behind the scenes, gathering data from your invoicing, supply and banking systems and updating your accounts on a constant basis.

The challenges of automation

It can take a while to get these systems set up to run precisely as you wish and get the most benefit from them. The length of time will vary according to the type of software and what you wish to achieve, but the investment will be worthwhile once the new system is fully functional. You will also need to think about change management to ensure your staff are embracing the new technology. Introducing change such as this is likely to concern at least some of your staff, who may worry that their jobs are under threat, or that they won’t be able to work with the new software. You need to anticipate this and demonstrate to the staff the advantages to them of implementing new systems, as well as the benefits to the operation of the business.

About Mohit Tater

Mohit is the co-founder and editor of Entrepreneurship Life, a place where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business owners can find wide ranging information, advice, resources, and tools for starting, running, and growing their businesses.

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