A Painless Walkthrough on Workflow Automation Software
How to Choose the Best Workflow Automation Software
Increasingly, growing businesses are deadline-driven. Meanwhile, they're forced to do more and more with less and less. As a result, many organizations have turned to workflow automation software to optimize business processes.
After all, every minute counts. And with streamlined systems, businesses have found ways to save hours (and an incredible amount of revenue) by rethinking how their business functions.
The True Cost of Inefficient Workflows
Research reveals that inefficient workflows can cost your company up to 30% of its revenue. And the best way to optimize workflows through automation.
In short, it makes complicated business processes easier to manage while eliminating the need for a human operator. As a result, growing businesses can increase productivity and efficiency.
But how do you make that happen?
You need workflow management software. These software platforms connect systems and automate processes, freeing up time and resources in your organization. and with the right software, you can ensure that your workflows are efficient.
Top Five Workflow Automation Software for Business
What are the best platforms for automating your business processes? These five providers have proven systems for scalable systems. Check them out!
Quickbase is a low code platform that gives you the power to create enterprise solutions without the enterprise price-tag. Users can rapidly deploy applications using its drag and drop interface, giving them the power to design the custom workflow solutions they need.
Each new business app you onboard complicates and fragments your business. Using spreadsheets to capture and manually transfer data between systems isn't scalable. That path leads to time-wasting bottlenecks, unnecessary risk, and systems that slow your growth.
Workato lets you bridge those gaps with simple system integrations. In short, you can quickly and easily connect your most powerful applications. You get seamless integrations with the drag and drop interface that allows you to effortlessly automate your most complex processes.
It's system automation that scales securely with the cost and time associate with traditional custom builds.
Kissflow has a large consumer-base with over 10,000 companies using their platform to automate workflows. This encompassing software suite lets you design the custom workflows you need to automate processes in your business. From your sales department to human resources, you can quickly build the applications necessary to conquer a variety of business inefficiencies.
Its dashboard makes it easy to connect and deploy business processes while giving you immediate insights into real-time data.
Zapier allows you to connect your apps and automate workflows easily. With Zaps, you can quickly connect your various business apps, allowing data to move through these systems automatically.
With Zapier, you'll save time and money with business processes that flow automatically. And you'll gain a deeper understanding of your customer and your business with clear reporting and increased transparency.
With Process Maker, you get a low code BPM and automation platform rolled into one. Its dashboard allows you to connect complex workflows while getting an overview of the whole system. This allows executives, managers, and supervisors the ability to monitor processes and ensure agreements and objectives are being reached.
Process maker uses a modeler that lets users drag and drop complex integrations quickly and easily. Forms, data connectors, users, and more, you'll remain compliant while building out the workflows you need with seamless data transfer built-in from the start.
5 Benefits of Workflow Automation Software
The benefits growing businesses can experience by adopting workflow automation software are extensive. If you're on the fence about whether or not it's worth investing in these platforms to streamline your business processes, here are the top five benefits of workflow automation software to consider.
1. Streamlined Communication
Improving communication between employees and management is one of the biggest benefits of workflow automation. When automating the workflow, you also automate communication.
Everyone is involved in the process and knows what role each person has in the workflow. This breaks down barriers and opens the door to increased communication.
2. Increased Accountability
When you create workflow automation, you build a system of accountability while dividing the work between the members of your team. Each employee knows their individual tasks, helping them manage their time better. Plus, supervisors can easily look over the entire workflow process.
3. Improved Management Efficiency
With workflow automation software, managers gain better insights into employee tasks and how they fit into the overall strategy. Workflow dashboards and real-time reporting can help managers increase their visibility into the work being done.
Additionally, supervisors can monitor business variables to make informed decisions about process improvement with workflow automation software.
4. Focused Employees
According to a survey, an average employee wastes about 60 hours every month on workplace distractions. That's 759 hours a year!
Why did they waste so much time? Employees argued that a lack of challenges, job satisfaction, incentives to work harder, and boredom to be the key motivators.
One cause for boredom for employees is having a lot of tedious tasks that don’t provide immediate incentive. Workflow automation software eliminates tedious tasks, improving employees’ engagement. It also helps them to focus on more creative and productive activities that require strong skills.
5. A More Productive (Not Busy) Business
With workflow automation software, you can eliminate unnecessary tasks and redundancies, streamline the processes and use the potential of people and the systems already in place without any need to hire extra employees or invest in expensive software to increase production capacity during the busy season. In this way, you can save costs as well.
Workflow automation software helps you achieve consistent and accurate results. It also removes the risk of human error while identifying target areas for increasing productivity.
Where Can Workflow Automation Software Offer Support?
Business process automation reduces workflow complexity while making them self-sufficient. In fact, it's possible to automate any process in any functional area with the right workflow automation software.
Common Tasks Businesses Can Automate to Increase Efficiency
- Managing office information: Data storage, information exchange, data management
- Accounting: Creating invoices and delivering them to customers, checking payments, processing invoices, etc.
- HR: Generating documents, posting job listings, responding to applicants
- Marketing: Checking sales statistics or website traffic, creating reports, sending emails to engage customers, controlling ad costs, etc.
- Sales: Sending follow-up emails, automated alerts for managers, etc.
What Is Office Automation Software?
Office automation software is used to digitally create, collect, store, and manage office information that is necessary for completing basic tasks and goals. Office automation started primarily as a data processing tool. However, now it includes a lot of complex tasks such as integrating front office and back office automation systems.
There are three basic activities office automation systems manage:
- Information storage
- Information exchange
- Data management
These days, office automation systems have become a necessity for SMBs and large-scale enterprises. Every business deals with a multitude of purchase orders, delivery notices, invoices, records that contain employee details, and a lot of other documents.
Handling these documents manually is time-consuming and chaotic. For that reason, most business owners prefer to invest in office automation systems. That's because they understand that this is one form of workflow automation software that can save them a lot of time and money in the long run.
Sales Automation Software
Looking for an effective way to increase your sales team’s productivity? Then, sales automation software is the best option for you.
Sales automation software automates manual and time-consuming tasks that managers and sales representatives do every day, improves efficiency and accuracy, and accelerates the sales process.
Of course, it’s not necessary to automate every aspect of your sales. However, if you implement some sales automation tools, you can accomplish more and achieve better results. Sales automation systems can make most sales processes and workflows easier. Here are a few examples of areas they support:
- Lead generation
- Lead scoring
- Follow-up emails
- Order processing and tracking
- Sales quotes, proposals, and reports
- Inventory management
- Pricing and Shipping
- Standard contracts
- Employee performance evaluation
- And many more areas.
Initially, sales automation tools focused only on eliminating tedious and redundant tasks. However, the increasing use of artificial intelligence (AI), data analytics, and machine learning have improved the targeted capabilities of modern sales automation solutions.
Performed correctly, sales automation software can save your organization a lot of time while helping sales teams concentrate on core selling activities. That’s why it’s critical to choose one of the best sales automation systems. For example, a CRM that can help you increase your sales efficiency and close more deals.
8 Key Factors to Consider When Choosing Workflow Automation Software
When you make a decision to automate repetitive processes, it’s very important to choose the right workflow automation software. This ensures it will have a positive impact on your business.
How do you go about making that choice? Consider these 8 factors before buying any workflow automation software:
You need a workflow automation application that is user-friendly. It shouldn't require expert knowledge such as programming skills to use it properly. Instead, you need software with a well-designed user interface that includes easy to navigate menu, tools, and patterns you really need.
Keep in mind that a poorly designed user interface may confuse users. As a result, they may find it difficult to complete tasks. Remember: the main goal of implementing automation software is to make your work easier and to give you extra time to do more. WIthout a simplistic platform, you'll end up creating more work for yourself.
This aspect is especially important when selecting a process-specific workflow automation system. Think about the features and capabilities of the workflow automation software in question. And note what the app can do and can’t do.
Automation software should have all the necessary features that suit your workflow and your business process. If the tool can’t perform the functions you will need most often, you should reconsider your choice.
When using workflow automation software, you're going to be processing sensitive information. For example, businesses hand plenty of financial and personal data. That’s why data security is crucial. You don’t want to be the source of a costly data breach.
As you vet vendors, be sure that your workflow automation software provider can guarantee no data leakage or data loss.
When you choose an off-the-shelf solution, you should make sure that the workflow automation software is flexible enough to be customized for performing certain tasks.
Be sure to ask if it's possible to build workflows and customizations as you need them without investing in expensive additional programming resources. It’s important that your team can easily make adjustments and changes or add new features and patterns without additional requirements.
You are likely to use a variety of tools to manage your processes. Your new workflow automation software should easily integrate with all the tools you already have. That's because your chosen software solution will have a major impact on your overall business efficiency and productivity.
If you choose software that doesn’t integrate with other tools, you'll waste time switching platforms. On the other hand, systems integrations remove that step, saving you loads of time and money.
As your business grows, the volume of work grows as well. That’s why you should choose software tools that are scalable by design. In this way, you can ensure that your automation software can grow with your business.
This will also prevent you from needed to invest a lot of money in a new tool when you need more advanced functionality.
Scalability is crucial for small, growing businesses. You don’t want to purchase workflow automation software and go through a lot of testing, integration, and customization only to realize after some time that your business has outgrown the software and you need to replace it.
7. Maintenance and support
You should have a clear understanding of the maintenance framework. Find out if you have to pay for new updates when your provider makes them available.
And make sure that your provider offers technical support for your automation solution and find out their support department operates. Also, ask how long it usually takes to fix bugs.
This is one of the first things people take into consideration when purchasing new business software. No one would be happy to pay a higher price if they can find a more affordable solution with similar benefits.
Many cloud-based workflow automation solutions are available on a subscription pricing model.
However, you should find out what your subscription includes and what you will actually pay for. And you ask questions that help you find out what the total cost of ownership will be for your new workflow automation software.
Providers can charge maintenance fees, upgrade fees, and services fees. Plus, if you've chosen a platform that scales with your business, you'll pay more as your business grows.
Also, you should ask about any additional charges that may be added to the overall price. This will help paint a more exact picture of your investment.
Getting the Highest ROI from Workflow Automation Software
To get the best ROI, closely consider all the points discussed and try to find an automation solution that offers the best quality/price combination. Every business is unique. As a result, it’s practically impossible to find off-the-shelf software that will meet all the above-mentioned requirements AND fit your specific business processes.
That’s why it’s better to consider building a customized workflow automation software system. You'll get a lot more value of something that's tailor-made to your exact business needs and specific workflows. While these bespoke software solutions are more expensive than ready-made apps, they tend to offer a higher ROI.
Streamline Your Business with Workflow Automation Specialists
Software automation engineers are specialists that design, build, program, implement, integrate, and test software automation systems.
When you decide to build a custom solution to automate your unique business processes, it’s important to choose a qualified and experienced software automation engineer to ensure you get secure, reliable software to help scale your growing business.
See how we've helped our clients improve their businesses and get insane ROIs by checking out our case studies below.