The Buck Stops With Automation
Staying up-to-date with technology is no longer a ‘nice-to-have’ but is a vital part of achieving operational efficiencies for your business. Many organisations in financial services are transitioning to become a digital business – from enabling worker productivity through tools (mobile, data access, AI-assisted process) to better managing business performance through data visibility, right through to meeting customer experience expectations.
In a recent survey, more than a third of organisations have started implementing a digital-first approach to business processes, operations and customer engagement. The report from IDG finds that organisations expect to improve process efficiency through automation (64%), create better customer experiences (58%) and improve employee productivity (50%).
The challenge for many business leaders, CTOs, CFOs, credit managers and key decision-makers is to identify the advantages and disadvantages of automated financial systems with the organisation and determine the best option to generate ROI and better operational efficiencies.
What’s the difference between automation and manual processes?
Aside from the big factors when analysing these business processes, such as – investment cost and opportunity, long-term revenue, efficient use of resources, legislation and other variables – it’s important to differentiate between automation and manual processes for business leaders.
Automation Business Processes
• Allows organisations to quickly execute processes and remove roadblocks.
• Scale organisations to serve more customers and stakeholders without delay
• Reach more precise operational capacities, reduce error and save time
• Re-focus resources on high-value activity.
Manual Business Processes
• Slower processes and more tailored to the situation at hand
• Reactive model of process delivery which can’t scale as demand changes
• Prone to errors, data inconsistencies and hazards
• Organisational focus on low-value work
In general, the benefits outweigh the possible disadvantages of moving toward adopting automated business processes.
Automated Accounts Receivable Management
It’s no secret that automated accounts receivable management can streamline processes and help organisations meet their overall goals, and ultimately, save time and money.
Businesses are reaping rewards and seeing the value of optimised AR processes. After all, processing thousands of invoices per month is no easy task. This requires manual processes from printing and stuffing envelopes to individually applying payments to customer accounts and updating spreadsheets continually. According to a survey of over 1,000 Australian office employees, on average, employees lose four hours each week “completing paper-based tasks”.
Poor cash flow for any business doesn’t only hurt efficiency, it also affects customer and employee satisfaction. Our testing has proven that if you give clients a positive experience by introducing various options, they are more receptive to working with you. Automation helps make it easier for the client to be interactive. As a result, your customers and clients will reap the benefits too.
Manual processes can still be effective
It’s important that organisations benchmark or compare manual against automated processes to better understand their value or effectiveness of current processes. Manual processes can still be effective if it can outperform all automated measures in terms of KPI’s and meeting customer demands. It’s best to choose which processes to automate and which to leave to humans.
Why reinvent the wheel?
Making the decision of when to automate versus continuing to process work manually is not an exact science. Switching over from manual to automated requires an organisational shift in mindset and a lot of planning and patience as your staff learns and adjusts to the software.
Once you’ve decided to automate your business processes, whether that’s financial (AR process) or other IT-related projects, it’s important to choose and implement a software solution within your cost budget and time, whilst meeting your ROI. Check out the next steps for choosing the best software solution for your business.
IODM is an Australian leading accounts receivable solution that goes beyond chasing debt.
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