5 Steps to Automate Your Business Workflow

5 Steps to Automate Your Business Workflow

Every businessperson hopes to automate a business that is profitable and scalable. However, instead of focusing on creating a robust business model with long-term sustainability, most end up working in the business with a gung-ho, hands-on attitude. And scalability doesn’t happen with that approach. What entrepreneurs fundamentally require is an opportunity to leverage and a prospect to scale-up.

But it’s not just entrepreneurs but project managers and other professionals, who require a sustainable way to get smart, thereby manage the workload more effectively without losing on any time, money or energy. Automated business process management, is, undoubtedly the most efficient way to acquire consistent and accurate results, streamline tasks, boost operational effectiveness and ensure a smooth workflow. In short, business process automation is a sure way to eliminate all those unnecessary human interventions which could be erroneous, costly and time consuming. Moreover, the automation process can be implemented in any business across any industry.

Any business, no matter how big or small, should consider automation if it intends to stay and competitive, enhance operational speed, reduce errors, increase productivity, eliminate irrelevant steps, build volume, reduce waste, expand capabilities and reduce cost.

Although automated business process management could be a chance to revolutionize the way how any business works, businesses should understand the thoroughness of mapping out the project. And before implementing this process the management should perform a self evaluation in relation to business process management. Thus a business person or a project manager should first figure out the answers to critical questions, such as, ‘Is the organization ready to work smarter?’ or ‘Are the employees ready to move from the traditional working methodology of spreadsheets and files to a new system as a team?’, ‘Once automated, can the organization work with lesser manpower and still deliver products or services with same or better quality?’, etc.

After the purchase of a workflow software for the automation of complex processes across business departments, it is also critical ensure that the software is perfect for the business and not just some means to merely provide the flaws in the existing system. To help with the preparation here are 5 steps to automate any business workflow:

Ascertain the repetitive tasks:

The first step towards automating a business workflow is to ascertain all repetitive tasks. Flow charts of existing processes coupled with an excellent understanding of the workflow would be the right way to go about it.

Define business goals:

Any business can be rendered unsuccessful without SMART goals and objectives. SMART goals encompass ‘specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely’ objectives that could optimize resources for productive tasks, reduce cycle time, improve throughput and should definitely be aligned to the existing workflow benchmarks.

Choose the right workflow automation solution:

The third step in the automation process would be to choose the correct workflow automation solution. While there are a plethora of automation software available in the market, it is crucial to choose the ideal fit.

Ensure skill enhancement for the users:

Updating the skills of the users would be the next most significant thing in the automation processes. Neglecting it by resisting the development of the users can prove detrimental for the business.

Measure key performance indicators:

The fourth step in this process is to measure the performance of the automation. While putting the system on live, perhaps a test run would be sufficient for the users to smoothen out any kinks in the armour.

There are a number of steps that may be adopted for the successful implementation of the workflow. However, there are a few do’s and don’ts that should be kept in the mind. Instead of choosing mission critical projects that are heavily integrated with other software, managers should begin with divisions that involve lesser stakes. Thus it would be suffice to say that the automation of business processes will not only anticipate the needs of the existing workflow but also use the same to increase efficiency, provide visibility into business processes and reduces costs substantially.

How to Improve Productivity in Manufacturing Industry

How to Improve Productivity in Manufacturing Industry

As the old adage goes, time is money. The more production you can squeeze out in a period of time, the more money you make, right? As per the old saying, ‘time is money’; however, with improve productivity in manufacturing industry, it is inversely proportional to one another. The higher the production in a stipulated frame of time, the more one gets to make it and manufacturers, across the world are in a continuous process to pursue efficiency in production through consistent increase in machine output, thereby meeting newer profitability heights and maintaining competitiveness.

And productivity in manufacturing is dependent on a number of factors – it is a combination of skilled employees, competent equipment and resourceful processes. To increase throughput without the need for sacrificing quality involves a detailed scrutiny of the existing practices, making adjustments, however minor, to systems, constant skill upgradation for employees and enhancing the efficiency of equipment that are used for the generation of parts and components.

The fundamental nature of enhancing manufacturing productivity can be engaged through:

Information: the accurate capture of information through the identification of losses
Focus: the identification of priorities through the use of that information
Action: ensuring action that is deliberate, methodical and sustainable for the long-term

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The total productive maintenance is the most crucial element for lean manufacturing, and includes an useful efficiency metric – the overall equipment effectiveness, thereby measuring the percentage of planned production time to indicate the ratio of quality throughput, as quickly as possible, without any down-time.

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There are a number of alternatives today that could help to reorganize the way you work by reducing the struggle of improving productivity, increase incentives that could drive up numbers. These have been variously explained, below:

• Examine the existing workflow
• Update business processes
• Invest continuously into the skill upgradation of employee skills
• Establish realistic expectations
• Procure smarter equipment tools
• Ensure an organized process
• Encourage team work

A significant initiative that could ensure effective business management at the manufacturing level is the effective implementation of a robust Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. Some of its operative areas include: sales, finance, e-commerce, warehouse management, purchase, HRMS, CRM and inventory management.

The implementation of ERP with the objective of improving manufacturing productivity is a vital requirement in the industry, today. To ensure the enhancement and seamless business management through advanced ERP systems are sure to provide invaluable benefits to manufacturers who seek cost reductions, growth management, enhanced efficiency and robust process that are streamlined with the objective to gain a competitive business advantage. Some of the benefits of implementing an effective ERP system that are aligned to the business goals are as follows:

• Stay ahead of competition
• Save money
• Enhance productivity
• Increase growth
• Improve people skills
• Ensure mobility
• Augment business intelligence

Despite the benefits of implementing robust ERP tools for the effective business management, the simple deployment of ay software won’t lead to the achievements of organizational goals. There are a lot of research and dedication that needs to go into ensuring right software for the business. And once the right ERP tool is integrated, the results are sure to follow.

5 reasons to implement cloud for inventory management

5 Reasons to Implement Cloud for Inventory Management

In this dynamic and mobility-adept digital environment, if the words ‘automated inventory management’ seems unfamiliar to your ears, then the future of your business maybe in jeopardy. And surprisingly you are not alone. 43% of businesses either don’t track their inventory at all or use manual processes to do so. And to avoid the hassles of over-complicated, needlessly labor intensive and unreasonable outdated spreadsheets, it’s time that you considered integrating cloud for inventory management operations.

However, if you are worried about cost implications, you shouldn’t worry at all. Cloud-base inventory management system is actually more affordable than most old-school methods. Also, the benefits far outweigh any other concerns that you may have – especially those regarding convenience, security, flexibility, among others.

Here’s a list of top 5 reasons for you to switch to a cloud-based inventory management system for your business.

Data recovery:

Imagine the nightmare if you were to lose your sales and transactions reports, customer-centric data, order statuses, or simply your inventory list, just because you risked putting everything in an excel spreadsheet that was conveniently saved on your computer’s desktop. Even if you are using software that saves your data locally, without any guarantee of a cloud back-up, you still face the threat of losing your data. And this predicament can be easily avoided with a cloud-based solution, wherein you assign your service provider with the responsibility of storing and securing your data.

Cost effective:

Cloud-based inventory management system is a cost effective solution and is definitely more advantageous over other local based systems, without the involvement of any upfront cost such as hardware. In addition, online inventory management systems have its own IT team, which typically means shorter implementation time, less money and fewer headaches.

Flexibility of access:

When professional responsibilities are required to be fulfilled while on the go, most business owners find it difficult to handle a singular, on-site inventory system with no online access. And this is why, a cloud-based inventory management system helps to take the shackles off that delimits the ease of doing business from anywhere around the world.

Another advantage of possessing access to warehouse inventory from the off-site is employee accountability. A warehouse, typically, falls prey to a myriad of employee theft scandals which could cause huge losses to any business. A cloud-based inventory management system helps to monitor transaction and quality control reports from anywhere on the planet. It is an asset, you should consider.

Automatic updation of software:

Manual software updation could lead to waste of time and money in the form of delayed sales and/or wasted payroll. All cloud-based software are integrated with the feature of automation, thereby automatically fixing bugs, updating systems with the latest features or patching any problem automatically.

Customization:

Cloud-based inventory management can be tailored as per your needs. Not only are your software updates automated, but a number of cloud-based warehouse management software could also consider your requests for features that are tailor-made for your business. And there are a myriad of options available in the market, today; some may also be willing to go the extra mile for ensuring a 100% efficiency of your warehouse management.

Whether you are a budding entrepreneur or a corporate honcho, chances are that you didn’t get here without embracing digitization. Why not choose the same for your warehouse management, as well? A cloud-based inventory management system is easy to implement, secure, scalable, and cost effective. It provides you with a hassle free process management; by freeing up your time provides you with better opportunities to shift your focus to areas which probably need more attention. Well, the era for using traditional options is over; if you want to operate hassle-free, it’s time to switch to a customized cloud-based inventory management system.