What is office automation?
Office automation is the process of watching data flow around on its own without any human intervention, inaccuracies, and errors. It is the process of using an automation tool to create, collect, store, analyze, and share confidential office data that is required to accomplish basic day-to-day routine tasks and processes effectively.
Technology has made a serious impact on the daily work of office administration. Emails have replaced memos, shared drives have done away with filing cabinets, and biometrics have taken over employee timesheet stamping. Many businesses think that they have attained office automation nirvana simply by going paperless.
But office automation is a different ballgame altogether.
Using online forms and sending Google Calendar invites might mean that you’ve ditched a lot of paper, but it doesn’t mean you are automated. It just means that instead of pushing around the paper, you are pushing around data.
What is an office automation system?
An office automation system is a tool that enables data to move from one system to another on its own without human intervention and inaccuracies. These tools help organizations collect, manage, and analyze securely to accomplish everyday tasks and processes. It optimizes and automates existing business processes and procedures.
Why use an office automation system?
In today’s digital age, office automation systems offer an array of benefits for organizations of every size. Powerful office automation systems reduce manual effort and store a large amount of data in little space. They not only streamline day-to-day tasks but also speed up information retrieval. Additionally, these tools improve process visibility and help businesses spot bottlenecks easily.
On the other hand, you could be watching data flow around on its own – that’s automation.
Benefits of Office Automation
Some of the biggest advantages of automating office workflows include
Reducing the manual effort to complete mundane tasks
Cutting down on manual errors
Shrinking the processing time for items
Getting insights into process performance metrics
Gaining greater process visibility and identifying potential bottlenecks
Making sound business decisions based on data
Office automation adds efficiency to your workflows, but you need to look beyond emails and digital forms to really embrace it.
If you are looking for an office automation solution that can take your company workflows to the next level, don’t settle for anything that doesn’t have these five essentials.
The 5 Essentials of Office Automation Tools
1. Easy workflow designer
However, a modern office automation system should start with the business user in mind, not the coder.
When you sit down to trial an office automation tool, start off by making your own workflows. How easy is it? Can you intuitively create the sequence of tasks needed to finish a process? If you can’t figure it out within the first five minutes, you need to move on to the next option.
A piece of software shouldn’t determine how your business should set its operations. It should instead aid your teams to strengthen the existing processes.
2. Mobile compatibility
Your office is mobile, and all your tools should be too. Whether you have remote workers or you just want to check in while waiting for a flight, the office automation tool you choose should work just as smoothly on someone’s phone while on a trip to China as it does on a PC at the main office.
Your marketing campaign can’t be delayed a day just because you need to wait for Greg to get back from his vacation in Machu Picchu.
You should be able to run your core processes from a secure cloud and never have to worry about where your data is or who is protecting it. If you use an office automation tool like Kissflow Workflow, then Greg can go over the marketing plan on his mobile from his hotel lobby in Peru and give his nod before he goes on to take selfies with the llamas.
3. Integration with other software
Office automation software isn’t the only thing you are running. You’ve got your internal database, a CRM, a marketing automation tool, and your financial software, and that’s just for starters. When you’re reliant on so many systems, you need a tool that doesn’t just keep to itself.
Of all the software out there, office automation should be the easiest to integrate with your other tools. If it doesn’t, you are stuck pushing data around from one system to another.
When doing an evaluation, see what kind of pre-integrations the office automation software provides, or if it takes advantage of connecting to a tool like Zapier to open access to thousands of other cloud tools.
4. Reports and analytics
How do you know if your office automation is yielding results? You can’t just evaluate process performance based on how happy your team is. Data is the ultimate decision-maker, and it’s important for your business to compare a process’ history, its speed, the outcome quality, etc.
Adopting another software to measure your workflow data is time-consuming and unnecessary. Why not have a single piece of software that comes embedded with reporting and analytics features? The best office automation products now come equipped with this feature as part of their fundamental offering.
5. Access control options
Just like limiting entry to your office premises, you should also have access privileges set to all of your business workflows.
A good workflow automation system understands this sensitive requirement and will have access control as part of its integral features. Don’t overlook this capability when considering office automation software for your business.
What are the functions of office automation software?
An ideal office automation software:
Requires less space to store data
Streamlines data storage and retrieval
Retrieves information instantly
Eliminates the need to preserve paperwork
Removes any chance for data redundancy
Allows multiple people to access data
Reduces the possibility of errors
Save money, save time, and step into the future
If you have been fooled into thinking your office is automated, when it’s really just digitized, It’s time to upgrade your workflows and take the leap towards office automation.
Offices that automate can save a tremendous amount of time and money and let their workforce focus on the things that actually bring value to the company. Try Kissflow's Workflow today and see how far you can go with office automation.
More about Office Automation Workflows
What are the types of office automation?
There are 4 crucial types of office automation.
- Electronic publishing
- Document workflows
- Office management
Why office workflows are important?
Office workflows are a crucial component in streamlining office operations. They help maximize productivity, eliminate human errors, reduce stress, remove process redundancies, and help drive actionable insights that boost efficiency. Overall, they help organizations pivot, sharpen decision-making, and drive positive impact.