Businesses everywhere are desperately trying to uncover streamlined ways of running their business that reduce costs. Many businesses have put up with legacy processes just to stick to the status quo. As the economy begins to shift, it's no longer an option to live with processes that are time consuming for employees that are now faced with heavier workloads and more intense KPIs. There are many automated applications (mobile and software) that can be implemented immediately to free up time and money for businesses.
Automation Application for Every Part of the Data Journey
A great way to understand what parts of your business should be automated is to focus on your data journey. The data journey consists of 5 steps: collection, integration, centralization, analyzation and visualization. Focus on processes in each step and identify which processes are heavily manual or repetitive. Most likely, there is an automation application that can be applied to one or more of these processes that can save you money.
Apps to Automate Data Collection
Data collection is the most commonly manual step of the data journey. For example, a worker in the field manually inputting data (i.e. submitting invoices, photos, notes) — without one cohesive app, the process is disjointed and time consuming and ultimately very expensive. Creating one application or portal to automatically collect data makes everything easier. A mobile application can provide one single data collection format. Mobile apps can also automatically file data like GPS and speed, ultimately collecting data you didn't have before.
Another example of automated data collection can be given about the staffing industry. With hundreds of resumes getting submitted for a single position, it's impossible to review and collect all the data. Using applications with Intelligent Document Recognition (IDR) documents can be sorted and using Optical Character Recognition (OCR) key data points can be reviewed.
Data Collection Applications:
- ServiceNow Mobile App for Field Services
- IDR/OCR Applications
Apps to Centralize & Integrate Data
Companies may have collected data, but it's all located in many different systems, be it IoT devices, manual inputs, customer data, etc. That data doesn't talk to each other. Combining different sets of data together is nearly impossible without automation. Automating the data integration process is the only way to properly combine different data sets to use to your advantage. Using a web app with a synchronizing portal to connect these data sources can help businesses avoid redundant, time-consuming data management tasks. Integrating and centralizing data is also an opportunity to utilize Application Programming Interfaces (APIs).
Data integration software applications can be implemented to integrate different web applications like Quickbooks, Google Docs, SAP, and any data points that would be useful to see all in one place, together. These applications automate workflows within these separate apps as well.
Data Integration Applications:
Apps to Visualize & Analyze Data
As you work through the data journey, data visualization and analyzation both become critical to making informed business decisions. Applications can turn complicated data into dashboards that are easy to understand. Adding artificial intelligence to these applications can even help make these decisions, providing predictive intelligence and alerts when action is required.
Data Analyzation Applications
Now more than ever it's critical to execute automation strategies to "do more with less." Businesses everywhere have many processes that are wasting time and money. Now is the time to review these processes and add proven applications to increase your bottom line.