Eliminate Toil With Automation of Business Processes

By Tom Hearn, VP, Architecture at Insight

For 38% of tech leaders, process hurdles including lack of automation are one of the most challenging aspects of digital transformation. Streamlining processes and setting up systems that operate automatically can unlock a wealth of benefits for organizations. From improving their employees' experiences to enabling innovation, automation can do more for businesses than simply saving time or money by removing menial tasks from the team. By focusing on repeatable, scalable, well-defined processes, organizations can tap into powerful ROI without disrupting workflows. For those that still need the tools or support to get these motions off the ground, this blog can serve as a guide.

Why should your business automate?

The breadth of potential positive outcomes can’t be overstated for businesses automating their processes. On its most basic level, automation can redistribute resources from time-consuming or rote tasks (often called toil) to more productive, strategic work. But for some processes, it can help mitigate security risks or eliminate human error from the equation. Businesses that are poised to leverage this technology can become more resilient to labor shortages by filling gaps with automatic processes or improving employee experiences by offloading toil from their workload. Additionally, compliance can be streamlined by automating parts of the process to unburden organizations and their people. Overall, the added resiliency acquired with automation can speed up development, empower innovation, and even enable pivots to new market opportunities. The reduction of complexity means businesses can meet their goals faster and with a stronger ROI.

Choosing the right processes

Though automation is a powerful tool, choosing the right process to automate is crucial. Organizations can fall victim to trying to automate a process that’s poorly defined or one that may show to be less impactful than alternative options. The goal should be to find the current repetitive processes that can be easily scaled and offloaded from direct employee involvement with the largest impact overall to the organization. Leaders should ask themselves some of the following questions:

  • What repeatable tasks do I want to accelerate?
  • What processes commonly contain errors or require disproportionate time to value?
  • Is this the right process to automate?
  • How much automation makes sense for my organization?
  • How will I manage these automated processes and ensure successful outcomes?
  • Can I use automation to remove the regulatory and compliance challenges by ensuring a repeatable and documented process?

While each business has unique priorities, common uses for automation that have found success include data protection, disaster recovery, and provisioning of resources or infrastructure.

A recommended roadmap to automation

While you may be ready to start your journey, it can be hard to know where to begin. Our experts have defined a process for how to bring automation to your business and ensure stronger ROI:

  • Define your outcomes: Establish your organization's goals and determine how automation can support them.
  • Review your processes: Look at your current processes and determine what can realistically be automated and which processes could have the highest impact.
  • Alignment: Communicate with stakeholders/employees and ensure everyone is on board for your shared goals of automation
  • Validation: For your first foray into automation, you should start small to validate its value before moving on to bigger projects.
  • Break down silos: With operational and cultural alignment across departments, the impact of automation can flourish.
  • Tap into support: Take advantage of the tools, providers, and experts that can help you along your journey and maximize the ROI of automation.

Leveraging the right support

While there are plenty of options in the market for automation, picking the right provider can give you access to unmatched support and capabilities. At Insight, we partner with industry-leading providers to help clients leverage their tools effectively and for the right use cases. For example, Red Hat provides open-source enterprise software that enables immediate developer workflows and lowers their barrier to entry internally by providing self-service infrastructure provisioning. This automation platform helps mitigate risks, improve experience, and maximize ROI for developer teams. Another provider, HashiCorp, has its own software platform called Terraform, which allows businesses to provision and manage infrastructure in any cloud safely and effectively. These powerful tools from Red Hat and HashiCorp can even be used in unison for additional benefits in the right use cases.

Start your automation journey on the right foot.

With Insight, you get access to experts who can help you define strategy and leverage best practices. With our industry-leading partners, you’ll have the right tools and capabilities to maximize ROI.

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