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How automation can help bootstrapped companies save resources and scale faster

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We have all read inspiring stories of companies with big ideas that become goliaths like Google and Amazon. To smaller businesses, reaching this position may seem like a far-off dream. Especially for startups and bootstrapped companies. There is a common belief that venture capital is a prerequisite for success. While VCs are often considered the reason for the growth of  startups, it is not the be-all, end-all answer founders are looking for.

Entrepreneurs can scale their businesses with minimal capital too, using powerful automations. Automation empowers small businesses to save several man hours by streamlining processes and communication across the entire organization. Based on a set of predefined rules, it triggers workflows for automatic execution of tasks, without requiring any additional resources.

How can automation be put to work for you?

You can accelerate business growth using automation to build a disruptive product. Automated processes are less prone to errors, more efficient, time-saving, and they require no remuneration. Here are a few specific case studies to help better understand what automation can do for you in practice.

1. Boost productivity and  enhance performance

A timeless adage in business is, ‘happy employees translate to happy customers’. Ensuring that your employees are motivated and productive is crucial for sustained business growth. Automating employee management processes such as onboarding, attendance management, vacation requests, accounts and payroll, etc. can help you save time and avoid a lot of unanticipated issues that crop up when the workforce increases. Here is how you can put your recruitment process on autopilot.

2. Automate manual processes to save time and resources

Automation optimizes business processes without compromising the quality of service. Teams can automate several repetitive tasks that are carried out on a daily basis, including, responding to emails, data entry, server health checks, scheduling meetings, and more. Automation allows teams to prioritize better by performing a variety of tasks within minutes, which can be a huge time savings for small businesses. Also, automation enables small businesses to channel their time and effort on more important tasks, such as creating a new growth strategy. If your solution is competing against the big players in the industry, automation can help reduce the time-to-market, while utilizing your existing resources.

3. Improve multi-departmental collaboration

Automation streamlines communication between different teams by centralizing data scattered across various departments, platforms, and processes. With increased visibility into inter-departmental operations, teams find it easier to deliver a seamless, omni-channel experience to the customer. Just imagine all of a company's marketing and sales data being integrated, such that the sales and marketing teams work together with the same data to achieve higher conversions.

4. Reduce dependency on IT

Whether it is a requirement for a software tool or assigning permissions to access a database, the IT team is often overburdened with requests, in addition to their daily tasks. A self-service automation solution can help individual teams to build, run, monitor their own workflows, and eliminate project bottlenecks. Using integration workflows, you can stop project bottlenecks and allow the IT team to get back to the things that are important.

5. Simplify order management and streamline returns

An efficient order management process is fundamental to the growth of a business, since it is one of those processes that have a direct impact on the bottom line. Companies that still process orders via paper invoices or by manually creating them online face the risk of errors, delayed payments, and unhappy customers. Setting up an automated order processing workflow can help simplify the demand-supply chain.

In addition to order fulfillment, automation can be useful for streamlining returns. Manually operated refunds are usually muddled and can take several days to process, if not done correctly. This may irk new customers and compel them to refrain from associating with your brand. Using automation, small businesses can prevent this issue. Automation provides greater visibility on the order status and the refund processing to both the business and the customer in real-time. This kind of transparency helps businesses increase their brand’s goodwill and and eventually translates into more sales.

6. Gather data-driven insights

Automated data analysis is always more economical than manual data analysis, regardless of your business size. Automation tools gather valuable big data and arm you with superior knowledge to help you make smarter decisions. They put you in a better position to understand efficiencies, recognize areas of improvement, and analyze customer behaviour through the entire lifecycle. Manual interpretation of data cannot provide this deep level of analytics. Additionally, automation can pull data much faster than any human and make it available for real-time analysis.

With these insights and in mind, you can choose the best automation solution for your business.

Built.io Flow: Powering smart automation through integration

Built.io Flow, an intelligent iPaaS helps small businesses automate processes by connecting disparate apps, devices, services, and on-premise systems. It comes with an intuitive, drag-and-drop visual interface that allows you to build powerful workflows in the shortest possible time. From something as basic as pre-scheduling social media messages to as complex as transferring bulk data to different environments, Flow has you covered. Since it operates entirely on the cloud, Flow requires no complex setup or installation procedures. You can build highly scalable automated solutions for your business simply by connecting your most used apps. Built.io Flow offers integrations for more than 150 apps.

If you are a startup or small business looking to implement automation technology in your operations, we can help. Drop us a line at support-flow@built.io to get in touch.

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