A growing business is very susceptible to falling victim to the unintentional gumming up of regular operations through the lack of proper scaling, an accumulation of repetition and wasted working hours, or simple bureaucratic bloat. Here are a few ways to automate and streamline your business to keep things running as smooth as possible:
- First, Patience – Most businesses, especially toward the start, require personal attention, a ‘human touch’, right out of the gate. Automation isn’t going to happen by itself, right from the starting line. As such, take time to make sure your business is functioning seamlessly through a continuous personal touch as it grows. Over time, you can find ways to automate the aspects of the business that won’t have an adverse effect on the customer experience.
- Streamline Communication – Slack, Discord, and Microsoft Teams are popular apps used to centralize company-wide communications and ensure nothing unintentionally falls through the cracks. With your communications secure, software like ScheduleOnce can be used to automate appointments and tasks through a virtual assistant. When making a system for employees, try using the two-step process of filming yourself doing the task and breaking it down into a checklist.
- Note Repetitions – Finding opportunities for additional automation can be done any number of ways – team meetings or company-wide surveys being two commonly used tools. If a certain task stands out as especially repetitive, you can begin to look for an automated solution that can perform that task as well or better than by continuing to do it manually. Menial and time-intensive tasks like sorting and responding to customer service inquiries can be partially or fully automated at no cost to the customer experience.
- The Simpler, The Better – Automation need not be overly complicated in order to be effective. After all, a more complicated system requires more maintenance, requires more training to fix if it breaks down, and can be overall more disastrous to business operations.
- Machine Learning and AI Implementation – New developments in software allow for a company to take business metrics and convert them into data points which an AI engine can then optimize. Company management tools like Google Cloud or SharePoint have built-in tools for automation, and you’ll have all the latest updates as the apps are continually updated (and optimized themselves). The right implementation of software can enable your business to achieve maximum efficiency.