How the Rise of the Citizen Developer Enables the Scaling of Automation Across the Legal Sector

As defined by Gartner, a citizen developer is a persona for an employee who creates application capabilities to be used by themselves or others – for example, forms, automations, connections to other systems.  The increase in citizen development is part of the trend towards the democratisation of IT – people who don’t sit in the IT department being able to access sophisticated technical capabilities without technical or development training. These people are working within individual business units and are using no-code tools to rapidly develop applications. They simply don’t need advanced technical training. They need an analytical mindset and an understanding of their subject matter, but they don’t need to be developers. And they are on the rise – with an ever increasing younger, more tech savvy workforce wanting to develop their own applications. Gartner further showed in 2021 that 41% of organisations already used a platform for citizen development, while another 27% expected to use one within the next 12 months.

What are the implications of this for legal? Who are the new citizen developers in law? We’ve heard from a number of them in this white paper. In a GC’s office, they are the legal ops specialists who sit in the legal innovations department and their role is, with input from the legal experts, to assess the challenges the department faces and begin to develop these applications. In law firms, it’s not the front-line lawyers developing these applications (although as we’ve shown in this paper, they will have a massive contribution to make) but rather the Legal Tech teams. 

We are witnessing the rise of multi-functional teams to develop solutions. Lawyers or people with legal expertise plus IT departments who arrange and secure the correct platforms for delivery, join with citizen developers or legal technologists. The latter of these, take the expertise of their lawyers, assess the solution that needs creating and then are developing them on no-code platforms. And no-code is a massive growth area – Gartner predicted a 23 percent expansion within business Worldwide during 2021.  

The implication for cost reduction by moving this functionality out of pure IT development and into legal is massive. Automation is now in the hands of the citizen developer making it possible to automate areas that previously could not as the gains in time simply did not justify the investment.

Why Scale your Shipping and Logistics Business with Digital Process Automation?

There is no doubt that the shipping and logistics industry is facing a challenging yet opportune time. Spiralling fuel costs, labour shortages, sustainability, new government regulations and, of course, the small matter of a global pandemic, have contributed to unpredictable, highly disruptive waters.  But, as The Economist neatly put it recently, “the era of predictable unpredictability is not going away” – with challenges come opportunities. The pandemic has seen shipping volumes explode as consumer demand continues on an unprecedented level. The industry has invested heavily in response to this – we’ve seen the rise of robotic technology to automate processes from picking to packing, inspecting to container stacking. However, what of the fundamental digital processes and documentation that sit behind the physical movement of goods? The instructions to partners, the insurance documentation, the verification of processes, the letters of credit, the accounts payable invoicing? Are these time and energy intensive processes keeping up with today’s volumes?  Will ‘the way you’ve always done it’ be enough to keep pace with growth now and in the future? Could you improve operational efficiency and save money by automating these processes? 

Still not sure? Consider this example.  Research from Drewry Shipping Consultants estimates the container liner industry carries 60% of the goods (by value) moved internationally by sea, deploying 5,100 container ships worldwide on approximately 400 scheduled liner services, most of which sail weekly. This generates a global transport revenue of some $166 billion a year in transport revenues. But it also creates 1.26 billion freight invoices.  Each of these has to be issued, verified, paid and reconciled.  Astonishingly, the majority of these are still handled manually, making it a costly and onerous process, rife with errors.  The level of automation of invoice reconciliation and settlement is very low, particularly among small and medium size players. Drewry states the cost of these process inefficiencies represent $34.4 billion a year.  

Imagine an easy-to-create and run system that could massively simplify this.  A process that makes it faster, more accurate and less resource heavy. Technology is available today to easily create a workflow to reconcile bookings, invoices and payments automatically, linking all stakeholders, ensuring digital records are kept for verification. All stakeholders can see it, track it and have the digital evidence.  

But this is just one example. The reality of a modern-day supply chain is that every element of the process still generates a huge volume of documents. In fact, it’s estimated that every year, 12 billion documents are processed in ocean forwarding alone. Business leaders in the shipping and logistics sector should be looking at digital automation as a chance to change, to scale up and future proof their business.  

Typically, the generation of shipping documentation has been handled by people because the cost of digital automation was simply too high and too complicated to create. However, today the use of cloud-based low-code and no-code automation platforms means that companies in shipping and logistics can build, operate and support an automated system with non-technical staff and budgets from a few thousand pounds  a year. It has opened intelligent automation up to companies that could not previously afford this kind of tech. Platforms such as AUTTO have a lot of flexibility and yet also allow control, audit trail and monitoring and allocating tasks to your team. These systems will automate document production, calculations, task allocation, approvals, data transformation, integrations and update records. Potentially packing lists, bills of lading, certificates of origin, invoices and letters of credit can all be automated. 

As software completes tasks within seconds instead of hours it cues staff or another automation to begin the next task – the overall pace at which your business responds increases. This means not only time spent doing a task is reduced but the ‘time elapsed’ between when a job was requested, and when it is completed drops rapidly. As your customers (both internal and external) are becoming more used to an ‘Amazon Prime’ business culture of immediate fulfilment, then the ability to deliver quickly is a competitive edge. 

As an industry run increasingly by robotic process automation, leaders of shipping and logistics businesses should also be looking internally to ascertain which operational processes could benefit most from digital automation.  We at AUTTO help businesses  make operations leaner – improving customer satisfaction whilst using as few resources as possible – by helping you to create your own digital automation workflows. A few simple changes can really transform your business.  With the challenges and opportunities currently facing the shipping and logistics industry, now is the perfect time to start to reap the benefits of adopting this leaner approach to operations using digital automation.  We’d love the opportunity to talk to you more about how your business can benefit and provide you with a free trial of AUTTO. https://www.autto.io/free-trial/ 

If you’d like to understand more about our approach to lean operations using digital automation you can download our white paper here: https://www.autto.io/three-step-guide-to-lean-operations/ 

1 https://www.economist.com/leaders/2021/12/18/the-new-normal-is-already-here-get-used-to-it?frsc=dg%7Ce

2 https://www.solent.ac.uk/research-innovation-enterprise/documents/china-centre/global-maritime-weekly-digest-08-05-2018.pdf

3 According to in a Billentis report last year, of all the invoices issued worldwide, a jaw-dropping 90% of them are still processed manually

 

Happy New Year (or is it?) – How Automation is driving the Future of Work

This week sees the big return to work after the Christmas break.  But after the last of the celebrations are over is the real hangover your lack of enthusiasm for work?  Has time off made you reflect and realise certain parts of your role are over repetitive, uninspiring and just taking up too much time?  Are you considering quitting your current role and finding a job where you feel more engaged, more valued and one where you feel more excited to turn up every day? You are not alone. Globally business is witnessing what has been termed “the big quit” – in the UK alone the number of open jobs rose to a record high of 1.1 million in the three months to August 2021¹. Employee burnout is also on the increase – research shows a 15% global rise this year increasing to a jaw dropping 81% in “non-thriving” company cultures.² 

 

The good news is that the effects of an almost two-year global pandemic have thrust digital transformation on employers and a recognition of the need to use this digital investment to keep their valuable staff.  Leading employers are becoming increasingly genuine about putting the employee at the centre of the business.  They want to keep them engaged, create space for critical thinking and problem solving and use their time and talents to develop the business.  Some are embracing automation as a way to take away those ‘time-rich, imagination-poor’ yet critical tasks from employees.  

 

‘Business automation is getting software to do some work so that humans don’t have to.’

Automation software loves the work that people hate. It is good at speed, repetition and accuracy. “No-code” platforms like AUTTO make automating key business processes and documents easy.  Automating these tedious but nonetheless important daily tasks of every company will free up your time – our customers tell us about 75%.  Investing in a technology that can replace the hours you spend, for example, laboriously cutting and pasting into a spreadsheet or sending out endless emails, proves an employer is invested in you and wants you to feel more valued and empowered to make decisions for the good of the business. Routine documents such as order processing, contracts, invoices, sales activity reports, quote generations, T&Cs, licenses and more can all be replaced with automation. If technology can take care of the mundane, repetitive tasks, that frees up your time to focus on more challenging, creative projects. 

 

Platforms like AUTTO are so easy to use that non-IT staff with no programming skills are being given the automations to identify and create – after all you are at the coal face of your business and know which processes need changing.  With AUTTO anyone can automate in a few hours with our simple no-code platform.  No technical expertise is required. You can take any of your unique business processes, easily learn the system and, like Lego building blocks, automate them.  

 

Automation is driving huge change in the employee experience of work. Perhaps as you return to work this year you should be asking your employer what investment they are making in automation – after all, it is in effect, an investment in you.

 

References:


¹Office of National Statistics 2021
²O.C.Tanner Europe Global Culture Report 2021

2021 – The Year Resilience Ruled and how Digital Automation will Fuel 2022’s Need for Lean

So as another pretty challenging year draws to a close, we see those businesses that have taken practical steps to strengthen operationally are those that have responded best to the market’s prolonged volatility.  Continuing to build this resilience into 2022 will be crucial. With last year’s accelerated trends of remote working, e-commerce and digitisation now firmly considered the norm, smart businesses have realised they must now introduce a leaner operational platform to weather future storms to maximise customer service and reduce waste.  As businesses learn to live with the “new way” of doing things the scalability digital automation provides to help meet this end goal will be pivotal. 

 

A lean operational approach should be at the top of every CEO’s Christmas list. This approach – where the central business goal is to focus on providing greater customer satisfaction whilst using as few resources as possible – requires leaner processes and procedures.  By digitising these processes, many successful businesses in 2021 have already been able to track, monitor and efficiently manage their growth. Critically, by automating routine tasks as much as possible, they have left themselves breathing space to scale-up, and if necessary, easily scale down as market demands change.  

 

The cost of automation has previously been too high or too unique to a particular business. But the low-code automation solutions now available democratise technology making automation more accessible to the everyday business user.  The use of cloud-based low-code (simple scripting) and no-code (drag and drop) automation platforms, means that companies can build, operate and support an automated system with non-technical staff on a budget typically of just a few thousand pounds a year. Given the challenges of constricted budgets and fewer IT resources to support internal processes (as IT is simply still too busy digitising the whole business!) line-of-business teams should be looking at self-service by turning to low-code solutions to automate business operations, documents and knowledge quickly and easily. 

 

Similarly, one of the critical benefits of digitisation is the ability to scale up or down quickly and seamlessly.  Cloud-based software gives organisations the option to increase or decrease capacity with the click of a few buttons of a website. 

 

One of the advantages of digitisation that perhaps we had not appreciated so much until this year is that modern cloud-hosted digital services do not care where you are in the world.  They don’t care if you are at home or in the office as long as you can log in. Not every employee in every business can work from home, but there is no doubt that the more digitised savvy companies found this transition much more straightforward.  

 

 Lean automation can deliver time savings of 75-99% on routine work, and perhaps more significantly, increase accuracy.  While it is overstating the case to say most businesses can be completely automated ( these kinds of gains can dramatically increase a team’s capacity.  That means when your company finds itself back on the now familiar rollercoaster ride of recent months over 2022, your teams will have the time and ability to navigate and successfully manage the ups and downs.

Why automation presents a substantial opportunity for MSP’s

To stay competitive, managed services providers (MSP’s) must offer their customers innovative services that are demonstrably better than their peers.  Standalone revenue no longer cuts it – MSP’s need opportunities to develop customer relationships and generate additional revenue streams.  At AUTTO we believe the automation market for MSP’s is set to be massive.  We present our top tips on how to make the most of this market space.

 

1) The market for automation is there for the taking

Riding on the tailcoats of the acceleration in digital transformation that occurred during the pandemic1, digital process automation is the new must-have.  Research2 demonstrates 80 percent of SME leaders are acknowledging the importance of automation of tasks, processes and digitising of paperwork for their survival.

However, data3 also indicate that SME’s lag behind big businesses in the adoption of nearly all technologies.  The largest gap is in the digitalisation of internal organisation processes (sadly where the greatest efficiencies can be made). This presents a fantastic opportunity for MSP’s. They can:

  • Identify the barriers to automation.
  • Create the solutions required.
  • Provide ongoing incremental support and training to automate their digital processes.
  • Extend the value of their services beyond the IT department

 

2) Become the expert

SME’s want to “do things better”, but they don’t necessarily know how. MSP’s can be the expert and become a trusted partner by providing guidance on how automation can best impact their business.  The benefits of automation are vast:

  • Time and cost-saving.
  • Improved efficiency – tasks are completed faster and with greater accuracy when automated.
  • Improved customer experience.
  • Happier and more fulfilled staff.

Processes such as filing sales reports, customer and staff onboarding, contracts, licences and order processing can all be automated saving vast amounts of valuable time (our customers tell us up to 75%). Be the expert and win their respect.

 

3) Do it all for them

Sometimes a SME simply doesn’t want to make a change because of perceived time and skills shortages.  This is our experience at AUTTO.  Although our product is a no-code, easy to use platform, customers often want us to build their initial workflow automation. As a product business, our small sales and professional services capability is a constraint on us growing quickly – hence the driver of our value-added reseller partner programme. Partners can work with customers to develop their workflows and as a result, often are then called on for ongoing support….

 

4) Workflow support and training

Once workflows have been developed, the MSP can provide a single point of IT support, development and training.  This is a powerful competitive differentiator as the value-add given to customers helps create stronger relationships and loyalty and cuts back on customer churn.

 

Additionally, creating this relationship lays the foundations for a potentially deeper digital transformation programme. This presents opportunities for additional professional services such as change management, remote working and process automation workshops.

 

5) Encourage existing customers to automate

Similar to “being the expert”. Existing customers regard their MSP as a trusted technology supplier that understands their business and existing digital processes.  Leverage this relationship to introduce the idea of digital automation where they had not previously thought of it or thought possible.

 

We hope you can see how AUTTOmation is set to be a game-changer for MSP’s.  More than a standalone revenue opportunity, automation will keep a partner relevant and engaged with its customers, will develop new, stronger relationships and loyalty which ultimately will boost revenue streams.

 

Let’s drive digital transformation together!


References:

Recent McKinsey & Company research demonstrates the pandemic has had such a profound effect on digital transformation that seven years of progress was made in a matter of months. As reported on by ConsultancyUK  –  https://www.consultancy.uk/news/26372/covid-19-has-accelerated-digital-transformation-by-seven-years

2The State and Fate of Small and Medium Businesses Xerox 2021

3Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) 2020 data

Bridging the Digital Divide

The wide-ranging benefits of digitalisation to business has never been more obvious.  Recent McKinsey & Company research demonstrates the pandemic has had such a profound effect on digital transformation that seven years of progress was made in a matter of months.  No wonder this has thrust digital transformation to the forefront of business goals.  According to a survey by HCL Technologies, 80% of organisations now see it as a priority.

However, despite the obvious benefits, data also indicates that SME’s lag behind big business in the adoption of nearly all technologies.  The largest gaps are in the digitalisation of internal organisation processes where automation can save time and money. Why is this the case? Are SME’s unsure how to proceed to best benefit their business? What are the barriers to digital transformation? How can SME’s also ride the wave of this technology revolution?

Process automation and digitalisation could be the answer. Using simple, cost-efficient technologies, SME’s can transform manual operations into digital ones.  For SME’s, the benefits of embracing automation are huge:

  • Save time to focus on what matters
  • Reduce costs
  • Boost sales
  • Reduce human error

We acknowledge SME’s are a diverse group but some processes are common to us all.  Think how long the sales process can be. Quotes, approvals and sales contracts going back and forth in countless emails and phone calls.  Routine documents such as NDA’s, onboarding new clients (and staff), invoices and reports are also extremely time-consuming.  Overcomplicated communication, slow approvals, rerouting of documents, fixing errors and digging through piles of paperwork and emails.  Automation is the answer – it simplifies the systems, eliminates the tedious tasks and replaces staff time with tech, freeing up more time for them to do what they do best (which let’s face it, is what you employed them for).

So, what is holding SME’s back?  Why is there this digital divide? Is the perception that the cost of automation is too high for a small business?  Automation doesn’t have to be expensive just strategic.  Simple tools can be used to do repetitive tasks for you, saving time and money for the business.  But implementing automation must require specialist skills by IT programmers that we simply don’t have, right? Wrong! New low or no-code platforms like AUTTO puts the technology directly into the hands of people who run the everyday business without the need for specialist programming skills.  Valued staff are empowered to identify their own pain points and easily automate their day-to-day tasks with no-code automation.

The McKinsey research concludes that although small business is less likely to automate than large corporates it is more likely to succeed.  We at AUTTO want to help you realise this. Get in touch today to book your free demo:  https://www.autto.io/book-a-demo

The Top 5 Processes Every SME Should Automate Now!

Business automation has become a key part of driving success forwards and is no longer the preserve of big corporations.   With platforms such as AUTTO, small businesses can now afford to easily incorporate automation in every aspect of their business, leading to huge time and cost savings.   It can be quite confusing for small business owners to identify exactly which daily tasks should be automated. So, in this post, we explore our recommended top 5…

 

  1. Sales Completion 

Salespeople hate paperwork but heaps of forms are inherent when closing a deal. Documents such as:

  • Sales Agreements
  • Invoices
  • Client information gathering
  • Updating CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems can all be automated.

It transforms the sales process into a highly time-saving, more accurate and less laborious one for the team responsible.  This frees up their time and energy to do what they do best – sell more and grow your business.

 

  1. Managing Approvals

Automation cuts down on time spent seeking complicated approvals across the business. Getting approval for example for a PO over a certain amount or for a discount being offered to a client would usually require manual input from multiple people.  Each of these can hold up the time taken and make the process open to human error.  Automating this process makes it seamless, accurate and cuts time dramatically.

 

  1. Employee Onboarding

Taking on new staff is a time-intensive process for all and for the new employee, there is nothing worse than arriving for a new job, full of excitement than spending the first day filling out forms! Let automation handle the lot.

  • Employee contracts are created and signed digitally,
  • Processes are created to ensure all new hires have access to the passwords,
  • Keys and important files they need from day one
  • Automatic background checks, verifications and screenings.  This last one provides an important audit trail, vital particularly for those companies that have regulations. This leads us neatly onto…

 

  1. Audit Trail for Compliance

Many industries have regulations specific to them and must demonstrate compliance with certain processes – a lengthy and painful process. Automation takes the headache away by automatically providing an audit trail to prove compliance. At AUTTO, for example, we use our own software in-house to ensure and prove all new employees have had the information security training required to honour our ISO 27001 status.

 

  1. Information Gathering and Creating Reports

For organisations that need to gather and compound large amounts of data to produce bespoke reports for clients, automation will transform their business.  The time it would usually take to collect and collate info and create a relevant client document can be shortened dramatically with automation.  That frees up time to grow your business.  Small business consultancies, balance scorecards in the construction industry and talent management can for example all benefit from this.

 

So there it is – our top 5 automation suggestions.  If you’re interested in automating your business, talk to us now. We’d love to hear from you CONTACT US or sign up for our FREE TRIAL!

Lead with Tech – Why all leaders need to be tech savvy

“Technology is no longer just one vehicle for success – it’s the vehicle all possible success depends on.”

Strong words for business leaders. So why are so many still not championing the use of technology in their business?

Why is it too often seen as the job of the ‘IT manager’ or the ‘Operations person’? The disruptors of the past year have brutally exposed to small start-ups and big business alike the limitations of the longstanding norms of doing business. The “if it ain’t broke why fix it?” attitude has to change.

Every leader should now be aiming to be a technology pioneer and show a hands-on approach to adopting new technology to fill these limitations. Clearly if technology innovation is not on the priority agenda of the CEO there’s a low chance it will succeed – the new times we operate in now call for leaders to upend convention and take a more proactive approach to tech.

However, understandably many business leaders struggle to see where to begin – research suggests 45% do not even know where to start with digital transformation[i]. But the good news is with the tools that are available today, leaders don’t need the knowledge of an IT consultant.

New low or no-code platforms like AUTTO puts the technology directly into the hands of people who run the everyday business without the need for specialist programming skills. Leaders win on all fronts – technology transforms business efficiency whilst valued staff are empowered to identify their own pain points to fix.

Powerful automation platforms like AUTTO allow employees to:

  1. Think for themselves on the best way to streamline their key business processes, documents, and everyday tasks.
  2. No-code automation means they can then easily, without any programming skills, develop their own applications in response.
  3. Important but laborious daily tasks, such as cutting and pasting into a spreadsheet or sending out endless emails are automated freeing up valuable time.

Our customers tell us they save about 75% of their time using AUTTO. Staff hours are redirected to doing far more valuable and creative tasks.

This “democratisation” of technology creates an enormous opportunity to drive businesses forward but whether it succeeds or not is up to the leaders– they must take an active role to embrace and champion tech to thrive in the new tech World.

Lockdown has taught us to be more connected, not less.

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the world this year, in particular businesses and their staff. This disruption has made businesses re-evaluate their processes and investigate technology that facilitates remote working. While some companies have struggled, others have quickly adapted to this new style of working.

Now more than ever, we’re more connected to our colleagues, prospects, customers and suppliers via cloud phone systems and communications. As cloud communication experts, we’ve been implementing software and tools to help our staff work efficiently. We’ve also helped advise businesses and supported them with our services to help them stay connected and better equipped in these scenarios. Here’s a few thoughts on what’s worked and what hasn’t.

The power of the phone

While today’s digital age has given us more options for how to communicate, the phone still remains the preferred method of communication for businesses. Often overlooked for video and live chat, being available by phone is crucial for business operations – whether you’re in the office or not.

This is where cloud phone systems have really come into their own during lockdown. Having access to systems like 3CX (a modern, software-based PBX) and Microsoft Teams helped make the transition to remote working easier and less disruptive. Having the ability to run audio meetings, make phone calls with a click of a button and send instant messages to one another has ensured that businesses are functioning normally, even when staff are working from their kitchen tables, bedrooms and living rooms.

Businessman hand using mobile phone with digital layer effect as business strategy concept

 

Unifying communications

Regularly communicating with colleagues is vital to keep a business up and running. We’ve found that combining strong unified communications platforms has helped both our staff and customers stay productive and connected with one another.

Platforms like Microsoft Teams, Skype, Slack and Zoom have seen a significant rise this year but its Microsoft Teams which has seen the biggest growth, having hit 75 million global daily active users this year. It occupies a prominent space on the desktop and good integrations with other Microsoft products. Users also appreciate its familiar look and feel.

It hasn’t quite got the full feature set of a PBX but coupled with 3CX it’s a force to be reckoned with. Of course, if you’re happy with the built-in features and don’t need reporting or call recording then you should consider Direct Routing as an alternative to Microsoft’s restrictive call plans.

 

Managing productivity

Task management software like Trello and Jira have helped many organisations – including ours – stay on track and productive while working away from the office environment. These types of platforms allow teams to see upcoming tasks and deadlines, keeping them on track, organised and accountable. We’ve found that our colleagues feel more connected as they can see what everyone is working on and dive into the detail whenever they need to.

There’s still no substitute for getting teams together and working collaboratively but if you can’t be there in person then these tools definitely help keep projects on track.

However what Trello and Jira don’t do is take the pressure off your teams by digitising and automating routine tasks and processes. You can free up your teams time and ease the pressures on communication by making sure your business operations are fully digitally enabled, important documents can be produced easily and faultlessly and even automate compliance and guidance.   As you digitise more of your business then you will see its overall cadence increase as routine work happens almost instantaneously.

 

double exposure of businessman or salesman handing over a contract on wooden desk

How COVID-19 has changed us

We crave human contact and socialisation. Lockdown has made this more difficult than ever. Being away from the office has interrupted many business processes, including the simple act of speaking to work colleagues face to face.  Digitisation of those processes with platforms like AUTTO can help of course.

Companies where employees work together well and interact regularly are the ones that succeed. Having a good line of communication with colleagues helps organisations run as normal and ensures there isn’t a loss of productivity or business.

Software like 3CX and Microsoft Teams has helped us work together and stay connected. We’ve found that lockdown has made us more connected than ever because we (and our customers) are now really making the most of these tools.

Video calls have been a breakthrough for business communications. As regular users of Teams, we’ve taken full advantage of the video conferencing and virtual meeting capabilities of the platform. They’re easy to setup, manage, chat and share files seamlessly in one forum. With lockdown and the lack of human interaction, looking at the people you’re talking to makes everything easier and let’s face it, more normal and less boring during isolation.

How do you select the right automation software for your business?

So, you’ve decided to automate, congratulations! This is the first step towards changing your life and running your business. Yes, automation will literally change your life, for the better, of course. No more repetitive tasks that you don’t enjoy. Now you can focus on what really adds value to your business. The ultimate aim of automating is turning processes which take hours of your time into process which take minutes or seconds of your time, right?

But, how do you choose the right software for your business? Here’s a couple of things you need to consider before selecting the right fit.

 

What needs automating and why? 

It’s prudent to start by asking the following questions:

  • Where are your businesses choke points – what is talking up the most of your teams time?
  • What processes need performance enhancement – which processes need more accuracy and accountability?
  • What problems need to be solved – this will determine what functionality you require and it will also test if your processes are working optimally even before you automate them.
  • Which repetitive tasks need automating?

These questions may seem obvious but it’s a necessary exercise in order to understand exactly what functionality is required.

You can also ask your employees what they think, ask them what they need help with. User buy-in is a very important aspect to any change in processes.

 

Usability and integration 

You want to choose automation that’s easy and intuitive to use and ensure that it integrates smoothly with existing software applications you may be using. All systems need to work together to ensure that workflow is not disrupted or made more complicated.

 

Using artificial intelligence (AI) 

Be careful not to confuse Artificial Intelligence (AI) with Intelligent Process Automation (IPA). Intelligent Process Automation (IPA) is different to AI. IPA is software used for highly repetitive and predictable tasks and takes instructions from workflows set up by individuals using logical language.   It is rules-based, so IF THAT THEN THIS.

AI is how computer systems use data to imitate human intelligence and reasoning, making the system able to learn, predict and make recommendations.  This is done by using lots of data to train the system to recognise the pattern you are looking for.   For example, using lots of photos of cats that have been tagged as Cat to train the system to recognise cat pictures.  This is called a training set.  So AI is pattern-based, and you need the training data to set it up.    That’s a big commitment.

 

Customising your automation software 

A one-size-fits-all solution might not be adequate for your business, so it’s a good idea to select automation software that is highly customisable. What’s great about automation software providers is that most will allow you to trial the software solution before making a decision.

Some more things to think about before you sign on the dotted line:

  • Make sure that when you choose a solution provider that they are available to guide you and offer you the best possible customer service once implemented.
  • Make sure the software has an intuitive user interface and navigation, so that no special skills or training are necessary to run it.
  • Make sure you choose a partner that helps you consider issues like security and quality control.
  • A good solution provider will also guide you on how to scale your software solutions as your business grows.
  • Does the software allow remote access, so that you’re online anywhere, anytime?
  • Does the software offer cloud capabilities and remote cloud access?
  • Does the software offer a mobile capability?
  • How much money do you have to invest?

These are just a few of the many considerations before finding the right solution. AUTTO is here to help you discover the right fit for your business!

Contact us now to find out how to take your business to the next level.

NEW WEBINAR!

An Intro To AUTTO

How to Automate a Complex Process without Writing a Line of Code

  • Date: 31 March 2022
  • Time 14:00 BST
  • Host: Ian Gosling, Founder of AUTTO

Hi there,

AUTTO is a no-codebusiness and document automation platform. No-code means you can build tailor-made automated processes without having to be a developer.

get your free quote

Autto needs the contact information you provide to us to contact you about our products and services. You may unsubscribe from these communications at any time. For information on how to unsubscribe, as well as our privacy practices and commitment to protecting your privacy, please review our Privacy Policy.