Automation has led to great strides in business – and just about aspect of our lives.
You see automation everywhere, from the checkout at the grocery store to the ATM machine. Businesses commonly use automated email marketing, auto-responders, and follow-up emails.
Despite all the uses of automation, there’s a real fear that it could kill the need for a human workforce. As more machines enter the manufacturing industry, we are supposed to see a reduction in labor.
But, that’s not true. Robots aren’t going to steal anyone’s jobs.
To a certain degree, automation can help reduce the workload or streamline production, you still need someone to operate the machines – or the programs.
This applies to the business world, as well as the industrial sector. The majority of the fears that people have about automation are unfounded.
In fact, most businesses could likely use more automation. So, here are five reasons automation should be embraced and one reason why you may want to proceed with caution.
#1 – Reduce Marketing and Production Costs
Whether you’re using automation for manufacturing or marketing, it helps lower your costs. For manufacturing, you are able to reduce waste, streamline production, and reduce your overhead.
When you use automation in marketing, you’re able to limit the need for a large in-house marketing team. You may even be better off completely outsourcing your marketing.
Across the whole, the introduction of robotics and automation hasn’t had an effect on employment. While you can outsource jobs, or get rid of positions that could be handled by a robot, there’s a good chance this won’t lead to drastic cuts in your workforce.
When you look at the countries with the largest number of robotics in manufacturing, you don’t see a correlation between an increase in robots and a reduction in labor.
#2 – Increase Productivity with Automation
Along the same lines as the previous advantage, you can use automation to increase productivity. You don’t have to worry about a machine quitting or calling in sick. Though, there is a potential for maintenance.
In the long run, automation generally increases productivity. Though, this all depends on where it's used.
For example, if your marketing department uses automation for email marketing, they’ll likely spend less time accomplishing their goals. They can meet deadlines on time and not have to deal with as heavy of a workload.
This same concept can be applied across any department within a business – including the use of automated scheduling to create employee schedules.
Automation is needed to remain competitive in today’s market – in almost any industry. There’s no proof that automation will replace people’s jobs, in the grand scheme of things.
In fact, in many cases, automation gives businesses the opportunity to produce more jobs. With greater productivity comes more job capacity.
You’ll have faster turnaround and be able to improve customer satisfaction. You get all this by adopting the help of a few computer programs or a couple machines.
#3 – Automation Can Improve Reliability
Depending on its use, automation can improve reliability. This is most beneficial in manufacturing. Machines are able to complete processes with precision that humans can’t match.
With machines, you also don’t have to worry about consistency. They operate at one level. Humans, on the other hand, slow down when they are tired and are prone to mistakes.
Think about key areas of your business. Is there any department that could benefit from fewer mistakes?
Payroll automation can reduce errors in the payroll department, saving your business in labor costs. It can be used for marketing to ensure you don’t miss out on a prospective sales lead. You can even use automation to guarantee deliveries.
Machines and computer programs are invaluable resources. You can find ways to include automation in almost any department – to help with reliability, productivity, and consistency.
This reliability can also translate to more sales. By adding marketing automation to existing strategies, to help nurture prospects, the average business sees a 451% increase in qualified leads.
#4 – You’ll Have More Time for Growth
By automating key areas of your business, you’ll have more time and resources for growth. The smaller your business the more important this can be.
If you’re running your own business, as the sole employee, then automation gives you the time that you need to focus on other areas. You can spend more time developing quality products or more time trying to attract customers.
Workflow automation can help with this. Adopting a system that automates your most common tasks, you’re able to accomplish more with the time that you have available.
#5 – Your Competition is Already Using Automation
A final reason to include automation in your business operations is that your competition is already probably doing the same. According to a report from 2016, 49% of businesses use marketing automation.
About half of businesses are already using automation. This number will only continue to rise. By keeping automation out of your plans, you’re giving your competition a leg up.
People Still Want the Human Connection
You now have 5 reasons why businesses should embrace automation. But, there’s one reason to be a little cautious.
Even though technology moves at leaps and bounds, we haven’t reached the point where robots can replace the human connection.
You can’t automate, or undervalue the importance of, a human conversation.
When it comes to dealing with customer complaints, arrangements with vendors, or responding to a client’s needs, a human interaction will always be the preferred choice.
Automation offers many advantages, but we don’t need to worry about robots replacing everyone. There will always be a need for human interactions.
If you haven’t already incorporated automation into your business operations, it’s time to get started. But, don’t rush into the process.
Keep in mind the importance being able to actually communicate with people. Even if there’s a machine or a program for everything, you’ll still need a few employees to operate them.
There are plenty of reasons to use automation, as long as you remember to hold onto what makes your business connect with clients or customers.
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