You receive an automatic order confirmation after a successful purchase in an online shop? Your parcel is confirmed in real time with subsequent parcel tracking? An appointment reminder appears 15 minutes before your calendar event? These are all small examples of successful automation.
But when it comes to the question of whether one's own task can be automated or at least parts of it can be automated, things often look different. The topic seems complex and the possibility of saving time involves a lot of effort in advance. How do you decide what should be automated? And anyway, can a task be automated? Where is the best place to start?
As a guide to all these questions, there are a few commonalities that easily automated tasks share. We explain what you should consider in advance if you ask yourself the question: "Is this task automatable?"
Can the task be automated? Yes, if...
1. the task must be done frequently or according to a schedule
When deciding which aspects of your work should be automated, a good first question is: What tasks do you perform most often? Tasks that need to be done frequently or on a set schedule are perfect for automation because the benefits are immediate. You'll spend less time each day on repetitive tasks that can quickly become annoying or irritating.
Tasks that do not occur daily but only once a year are also excellent for automation. As soon as tasks are recurring and always done in the same way, you should make an effort to automate them.
In addition, such tasks are often not much fun or even frustrating. Identify those tasks and try to automate them first.
Because let's face it: copying and pasting is time-consuming and terribly boring. Of course, the same goes for other manual methods of moving data, such as exporting CSV files from one app and then importing them into another. And if you have to repeat the process several times over the course of a day or week, it quickly becomes unmanageable. Especially tasks that move data between apps are perfect for automation. For example, you can create new leads in your CRM when someone fills out a form on your website or subscribes to an email marketing campaign.
2. the task is boring and does not require complex thinking
Another important point is whether a task needs human interaction at all. Does it need creativity, problem-solving skills or emotional intelligence? You might not want to automate such tasks.
However, if it is a boring, simple task that does not require complex thinking, it can be easily handled by an automation platform such as Zapier or Make .
Identify tasks you would rather not do. Are the same steps necessary each time? Would you rather do something else instead of this task?
3. the task distracts you from what you really want to do and adds value.
This is probably the most important point: automate tasks that keep you from doing what you really want to do. Important, meaningful, value-added things.
If you find yourself putting off tasks for hours on end, wishing you could pass them off, or thinking about many other things while doing them, it is most likely time to automate them.
Convinced, but you don't know how automation works for you?
Our tip: Feel free to read up on your options. On our blog we present tools that might be worthwhile for you, but there is also a growing community for automation everywhere else on the internet. One tool that is particularly suitable for beginners is Make. What exactly Make is, you can read here.
Sounds nice, but you don't have much time for it? Or your tasks exceed the points presented here by far? We are happy to support you in uncovering potentials, illuminating possibilities and implementing automation. Set out to lead your company successfully into the future.
Cloud Integration, iPaaS, SaaS, BPA… Ough, hard to keep track of all these terms. They are currently used frequently (and increasingly) in the context of automation, and it is sometimes difficult to make a clear distinction and distinction. We have already written blog posts on the terms iPaaS, SaaS and BPA, but we’ll take them up again here to make the difference.
But let’s start with cloud integration, because that’s the central umbrella term in which we embed all the other technologies in this blog post.
To illustrate these advantages, an example is suitable that we know well from our everyday work as an automation agency:
The central data to be used here is the data of a major customer. This can be the simplest information, such as the address. This address is required in numerous but completely different processes in the company: on the one hand, for correct invoicing in accounting. On the other hand, in the CRM system, where all the data of the large customer is also stored. But the address is also important in sales, for example, when employees go to the sales meeting on site.
Now the customer announces that the address of the company has changed after a move. This information will reach you by e-mail. There are now two options:
01. The e-mail is forwarded to all affected departments, accounting, sales, customer service, marketing… All persons open their corresponding program, CRM, accounting software, marketing tools (such as newsletter marketing) and change the data already stored there of the customer. This means that in multiple applications, different people do exactly the same thing: change one address. 02. But there is also an alternative: By connecting your applications, thus by integrizing them, the customer’s e-mail, or rather the information it contains about the address change, is automatically passed on to all affected applications: CRM, accounting, marketing, ERP. This does not require any clicks, because the cloud integration detects a trigger, i.e. address change, and thus automatically starts the process.
What sounds unimpressive in a single process becomes more effective when such a process occurs several times a day or weekly. Because there is a lot of data that is available in different applications and should always be correct. If these applications are cloud applications they are suitable for cloud integration.
But cloud integration doesn’t just happen. There are now a variety of applications that enable and implement this. Such tools usually allow us to link the relevant cloud applications on a central platform and define clear rules on when, how, where, how much data should be passed on and what happens to them.
IPaaS, SaaS, BPA, ABC – who can still see through it?
To realize cloud integration, there are various applications and technologies that are sometimes used interchangeably.
Cloud integration cannot be done without SaaS, iPaaS and BPA
Cloud integration is rather an umbrella term that includes numerous technologies, such as SaaS, iPaaS and BPA, and this is also absolutely necessary. Cloud integration is a concept that is made possible by appropriate technologies.
However, all terms share the commonality that they are cloud-based and thus offer enormous potential for growth and scaling. In addition, they are often cheaper to implement and maintain because changed requirements are easy to implement.
As an independent automation agency, we implement cloud integration according to your requirements. We use a variety of SaaS tools and iPaas (strictly speaking BPA) software. Together we find individual solutions that are flexible and scalable.