There’s no denying that the pandemic has accelerated digital transformation efforts and adoption across all industries and companies, and while this was initially focused around rapid response for employee safety, customer communications, and remote productivity and collaboration, many companies quickly recognized both the short and long term benefits of modern business communications.
Fast forward to today and we find ourselves not only moving into the next phase of the pandemic but the next phase of modern work. Many of the strategies, applications and services that were put in place at the start of the pandemic are here to stay, just as many companies are adopting permanently hybrid or completely remote work policies. Digital transformation and business productivity applications not only have tremendous benefits for today’s decentralized workforce, they can also stimulate real growth and competitive differentiation. A recent IBM report found that tech-savvy organizations outperform their peers by 6%.
As a result, the market for solutions emphasizing work automation and productivity has grown exponentially. And while tech companies may have been early adopters of applications such as API platforms, low-code development tools, and more, companies of all sizes and industries, especially those in more traditional and highly regulated sectors have rapidly been investing in tools that support more efficient communication, collaboration and transparency, and more productive workflows for their employees and customers alike.
Industry-Specific Use Cases
Whether you’re a tech company or not, chances are you rely heavily on email and calendar scheduling for critical and everyday business communications and collaboration. You also don’t have to be a tech company to leverage modern technology to maximize productivity, output, and efficiency from these tools and applications. Some of the most significant use cases today are coming from sectors such as HR and recruiting, healthcare, sales, and other industries where a large amount of time is spent scheduling meetings, sending emails, and organizing information across multiple business platforms.
- Healthcare: Perhaps no industry has been impacted greater over the past year than healthcare. And while tremendous strides have been made in areas such as telehealth, the use of internal legacy tools, outdated software, and manual processes still exist and can cause healthcare professionals to potentially spend more time on administrative tasks and less time focusing on their patients. Business process automation can be tremendously helpful for scheduling appointments, surgeries, and other procedures as well as securely automating things such as billing, patient follow-ups, and more.
- HR and recruiting: Did you know that on average, recruiters can spend over eight hours a week on administrative tasks such as coordinating and scheduling interviews? Work automation and intelligent scheduling capabilities can help complete these tasks faster, allowing recruiters to spend more time researching and identifying strong candidates rather than dealing with mundane administrative tasks.
- Automotive: The automotive industry is in the midst of a transformational change, and while some of the most exciting elements are the cars themselves, work automation tools integrated directly into vehicles, applications, and dealerships can help automate automobile-related tasks such as scheduling service checkups and maintenance, car rentals and reservations, and more. With time-consuming tasks like these eliminated, service teams can focus on delivering a quality customer experience instead of dealing with administrative tasks that leave greater room for error.
- Sales, marketing, and customer service: CRMs are increasingly becoming the lifeblood of customer-facing organizations and teams. However, many companies struggle with CRM maintenance and ensuring that records are properly updated. Work automation solutions and services can help these businesses and organizations to ensure proper integrations, secure data transfers, and automated workflows that help teams keep databases up-to-date and can save significant costs. In fact, according to salary.com, automating tasks such as sending emails, logging data, and coordinating meetings can save upwards of $33,000 in labor costs per year.
- Logistics and Shipping: In today’s digital and global economy, shipping and logistics businesses are increasingly tasked with more shipments and shorter delivery times. Modern communication and work automation tools can help shipping and logistics companies to save hours of manual work by automating tasks such as sending out shipping notifications promptly to the correct location while simultaneously updating user profiles. These tools can also be used by companies to help prevent things such as package theft with the added transparency and delivery details that productivity infrastructure provides, thus increasing customer satisfaction.
Mitigate risk through automation
Software developers depend on several platforms throughout the development process and through execution to connect and structure data, increase their go-to-market velocity, and remain ahead of the competition. These teams work with enormous amounts of end-user data, and with the proper tools at their disposal can eliminate barriers to access and integrate, and leverage the data to automate workflows.
For companies dealing with sensitive PII or companies in highly regulated industries, work automation can not only be a way to increase productivity and efficiency, it can also reduce human error or oversight, mitigate threats, reduce the risk of compliance violations, and ensure that critical data is safe and secure throughout the communication lifecycle.
Empowering the remote worker
The reality is, remote work, in some capacity, is here to stay. In response, businesses have had to expand their digital tools – from communications to collaboration to customer engagement – to support a global team of employees.
In a recent survey surrounding remote work from McKinsey & Co., over half of surveyed employees stated that they would like their organizations to adopt a hybrid virtual-working model, where employees split their time between working remotely and in the office. Additionally, more than 25% of those surveyed employees reported that they would consider switching employers if not given the opportunity for remote work.
While it may seem that tech companies are better equipped to handle this, striking this balance between adopting long-term remote working policies while ensuring that productivity and collaboration does not suffer is a very real scenario that all companies are facing. However, whether in person or remote, things such as sending emails, scheduling meetings, coordinating check-ins, and more, remain key components of the workday. Focusing digital transformation efforts around these tasks can give employers the confidence that their workers have a productive environment no matter where they are.
Capitalizing on modern business communications is not limited to Silicon Valley. Companies everywhere have a tremendous opportunity to infuse work automation into their digital transformation efforts to maintain and even increase innovation and productivity in their post-pandemic work environments. By considering its use cases and benefits across a range of industries, organizations can make decisions that drive them toward the next chapter of their digital acceleration.