Tips to choose the right business process automation software

Improved operational efficiency and greater customer satisfaction are the most prominent outcomes of business process automation. Choose the right business process automation software that can make your company out-perform itself (and your competitors) through the power of automation.

Martin N. Gregersen

3 December, 2020

In the current era of complete digital transformation, several businesses are moving towards automating their business processes, and for good reasons! The need for a business to automate its processes cannot be overstated, be it a large scale organization or a humble startup venturing into the world. Business process automation allows any company to create a more streamlined workflow and exchange of information amongst different processes leading to greater efficiency and operational dexterity. Let us look at the various criteria that help determine the perfect software that can aid your business via simple automation.

Let’s define business process automation

Although it’s 2020 and many in the business world are talking about the future of automation techniques, artificial intelligence, robotic process automation, and natural language processing, it is quite essential to first understand the literal concept of basic automation processes. To define it in simple terms, business process automation is the use of technology to automate day to day tasks to streamline the operations and significantly reduce the time taken to get the work done. The following pointers will help you shortlist the steps to follow while choosing an automation software for your business.

Figure out the “why”

Markets are introduced to new technologies every second day. That does not mean that one should blindly follow all the fads and implement change without consideration.. It is essential to take a closer look at your company’s functions and jot down concrete reasons your company might need business process automation software. Taking a step back, visualizing, and fully understanding the objectives and business outcomes of automating workflow is the key to finding the right solution. Such introspection can be challenging sometimes but there are experienced professionals who can step in, conduct an audit, and come up with the answers for you to ponder upon.

Curate a budget

The next subject to cross off the list while looking for the appropriate software is to figure out the expenditure. These services come at a price and sometimes pretty hefty amounts at that. The price can include set up fees, on-site team training charges, usage fees, and sometimes in the case of marketing automation software, the final cost may be tied to the number of leads obtained. Keep in mind that hidden costs can escalate quickly, especially if you choose to sign up for a subscription service. The ideal software solution will have transparent pricing and lets you know if you are going to be charged anything extra for any supplementary or add-on features beforehand.

List the desired features

Once you have curated the problems and repetitive tasks that need to be tackled and the amount your company can spare, it’s time to dive into the features that you will require in the software. If step number one (i.e. curation of problems) has been performed with expertise, creating this list of repetitive tasks becomes exponentially easier. For example, if the curated problem is chaos and confusion in the sales department due to the information of leads scattered and distributed across various platforms. So here, one needs to seek the software with a feature that can easily automate the compiling of such an assortment of information into one document or excel sheet. Also, it is advisable to perform research about some new and advanced features that are about must in a marketing automation software. Some of which may include vast email marketing support, social media automation, customer journey articulation, landing page generation, and analytics.

Check for integration with existing systems

It is always helpful to check for the cohesiveness of new software with the existing software systems that keep the operations running at the organization. Amalgamation and integration of the existing systems should not be a big deal as most automation solutions allow for third-party-backend-systems. If your goal is to find good marketing automation software, make sure that it gels well with your CRM to guarantee that the sales are nurtured by the appropriate marketing tactic, clever tracking, and reporting. Before setting your mind on one software, look around to see if the automation platform goes beyond CRM integration and present additional automation opportunities like aligning marketing automation platforms with social media management platforms and likewise.

Look for scalability and customizability

As and when the business grows, the business process automation software will have to keep up. Due to this reason, it is wise to select a solution that can offer agility, scalability, and flexibility on the road ahead. There are options like pay-as-you-grow cloud-based services as well as on-premise solutions. Another factor to consider before finalizing on one automation software product is whether there’s room for customization to suit your company’s needs. In this overly competitive arena, it is necessary to have differentiating aspects that define your company’s competitive edge in the market. Also, check how user-friendly the platform is for the entire office by opting for free trial runs that give a taste of how using automation can transform the outcome of any process. The service providers should also lend optimum customer support in case of any queries and troubleshooting. Therefore it is advisable to consider a software company that provides the highest number of hours for an email response, direct phone support, and chat support.

Final thoughts

These guidelines can be helpful in narrowing the desired business process automation software. Deep background research into the different options available out there can result in insights like whether the software solutions are available for remote cloud access and whether it is SaaS. Implementing automation using efficient software will definitely change how your business handles future processes. As and when making the transitions be mindful of starting with baby steps and give everyone a chance to utilize the tool in the right way. Initially, test the software on some small process and slowly scale to rope in more complex workflows. These solutions can be creative and hands-free for regular tasks and choosing the right one ensures you experience top-notch benefits and adequate return on investment.

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Q. How do I know that the automation software is appropriate for my business?

If the automation software is intended to reduce your monotus workload, minimize errors and boost productivity, it is definitely worth your business.

Q. Can the business process automation help my small business?

Yes, indeed! Any sort of business process automation can be performed on a smaller scale with outstanding results, just need a strategic approach.

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