BY DENNY FISHER, Chief Client Experience Officer, ACS
It’s no secret that hiring employees has never been more challenging. In a market where the number of open jobs is greater than the number of available employees, businesses have to think smarter, not harder. How can you increase the employees’ productivity without burning them to the point that they either make mistakes or want to quit? Look to increase efficiency through process improvement and automation.
Think of the positions you currently have open. Could those salaries be used to facilitate a review and update of your processes and systems to create more efficiencies? Consider these questions, and if the answers are yes, you should consider improving your processes and systems to fill your employment gaps.
- If your current employees could reduce the time it takes them to accomplish a task, would you need more employees?
- Could an employee be used in a different capacity?
- Are the processes in your organization mostly manual?
- Do the processes require many steps and many individuals to complete? If so, are all those steps and checks necessary? Or could you accomplish the same results with a third of the steps?
Once your processes have been reviewed and updated for efficiency, you can look for systems and platforms that can help automate the steps.
Often people hear the term automation and immediately think of putting people out of work. Automation is really the opportunity to reduce the workload of manual processes so that employees can focus their energies on priorities that provide more value. The first step is identifying processes that would benefit from automation. Follow these tips:
- Processes well-suited for automation
- Rule oriented with little ambiguity or uncertainty.
- Require a high level of consistency.
- The outputs of the process use structured data, and the inputs use readable data.
- Does it make sense to automate?
- Will automating reduce time and errors?
- Is the process repetitive?
- Will automation reduce errors and increase quality?
- Will automating this process allow the employee to focus on other tasks?
Automation may require creating a data warehouse or integrating multiple systems. Though this may sound daunting, the ability to share data between systems and across the organization provides value far beyond automation. It also allows the organization to mine that data and derive insights to help the organization identify revenue opportunities and cost reduction strategies.
If you’re struggling to hire talent in this market, perhaps start looking at your processes to see if you can fill the gaps without hiring and without burdening your current employees.
|Denny Fisher, Chief Client Experience Officer, ACS