How to Use Workflow Automation to Save Time
What's the first thing that comes to mind when you think of workflow automation?
Perhaps you think of fast and efficient processes.
And you would be right. Workflow automation helps teams facilitate a more efficient process.
In fact, McKinsey Global Institute's recent report on Harnessing automation for a future that works indicated that more than half of the workforce leverage workflow automation in one way or another.
But automating your workflow isn’t just limited to faster processes. It’s also about helping employees prioritize their work and make the right decisions using data.
This is where saving time is not a nice-to-have but necessary for your team.
Luckily, with the right workflow automation strategy in place, you gain more time savings and help employees prioritize.
Here are some proven ways you can save time using workflow automation:
How much time can you save automating workflows?
To start, you want to know how much time you can really save with workflow automation.
After all, implementing a new tool to query, visualize and report on your data is an investment of time and money.
And while the exact number of hours one can save varies from one organization to the next the same research holds true.
According to Marina Martin, former CTO of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs:
“...workflow inefficiencies cost many organizations as much as 20 to 30 percent of their revenue each year.”
Now let’s assume your employees are putting in 40 hours each week.
How many ADDITIONAL hours would they need to put in to reach a 20 to 30 percent increase in your organization’s current revenue?
Thinking of how much time saved from workflow automation can really impact revenue truly puts its value into perspective.
Now let’s dive into how you can start saving time by automating workflows.
Minimize human error by syncing data
Look, it’s no secret we’re only human. Therefore, easily prone to making mistakes.
Just take security breaches, for instance, the root cause is usually human error.
So what happens when we’re able to take human error out of the equation?
When we remove human error, we’re able to save time from having to correct our mistakes. And in some unfortunate circumstances, also save ourselves from the headache of additional consequences.
With that in mind, workflow automation can really help to minimize human error.
Let’s look at a real-world scenario where this is applicable:
Imagine you’re tasked with inputting data from a Google Sheets document to your JIRA database. Now, let’s also assume you haven’t had coffee this morning.
How likely are you to enter the wrong data into JIRA when duplicating it from Google Sheets?
You could be an incredibly detailed oriented individual, this doesn’t make you an exception to making mistakes. Unfortunately, one tiny data error can sometimes cost organization’s hundreds if not thousands of dollars.
Now imagine you have access to a workflow automation tool that enables you to update JIRA as you're entering new data into Google Sheets. This automatically eliminates not only the duplicate manual labor but also minimizes human error.
In this case, a workflow automation tool is able to reduce time spent on resolving problems as a result of human error.
Spending time putting out fires wasn’t time you wanted to spend, to begin with.
To avoid, this all you have to do is automate tasks that are generally prone to human error like transferring data.
Make faster data-backed decisions
As a leader in your organization, can you remember the last time you made a decision without using data?
Chances are, the decisions you’ve made that were data-backed were much more efficient and well informed. Of course, this is for a good reason.
Data-backed decisions will always hold more credibility and influence.
At some point in your career, you may find yourself in a time crunch in need to persuade key stakeholders your decision is valid.
By using a strong fully or partially automated workflow, even leaders without coding skills can leverage data like a data engineer.
Don’t believe it? Just ask one of our long-time users, Konsus.
Here’s what Konsus had to say about ease of access to data for decision-making using Kloudio:
“ We find it really handy and it is fairly friendly with people new to the world of data. It Kloudio allows [us] to get access to complex databases using basic SQL through Excel/Google spreadsheets.”
Not only does automating your workflow save you time in the long run, but also helps you to make important decisions faster than before.
I mean just think about it, the higher the accuracy of your data, the better the quality insights reports your automation tool will generate.
Now that’s what we like to call setting yourself up for success.
Final thoughts on workflow automation
If you haven’t already made the connection, the time savings that workflow automation drives have a lot to do with the optimal treatment of your data.
When you work with accurate data on a consistent basis, you can ultimately make faster and more informed decisions.
That’s exactly why minimizing human error and making data-backed decisions come hand in hand with saving time and better results.
If your team has yet to implement any workflow automation, don’t worry. It’s quick and easy to start.
Let Kloudio help you save time with workflow automation. Try it out on our 14-day free trial.