What is Business Process Automation?

Business Process Automation or BPA for short. This was a buzzword a few years back with anyone and everyone claiming they were experts in this area. Maybe so. But to really realize its true potential you need to understand what business process automation is and why you will need it?

If you own/run/manage a business, take a look around yourself at the daily activities you perform to run your business effectively and efficiently. If you do observe closely, you will quickly notice that you (or your staff) do perform a lot of tasks that are generally repetitive in nature or they may be administrative tasks; tasks that you have to perform and are necessary to run your business.

Let me elaborate that with an example. A customer calls and enquires about a product you market. You tell the customer you will send a product brochure. You take all relevant information like prospect name, address etc. and walk over to your secretary. Your secretary takes the information, chooses the appropriate brochure, creates a covering letter, puts it in an envelope and mails it to your customer. Sounds familiar, right?

Well, what if I told you that process automation automates the entire process above using the Internet? And all with zero involvement from you? Or anyone else from your organization? Would that be cool? Let me help you visualize it.

Your prospect comes over to your web site, browses and is now seeking more information on a specific product. You have the prospect fill in all relevant information from within your web site. When the prospect submits the information, your web site will automatically save the information electronically in a database and send a personalized email to your prospect (i.e. thanking him/her for the enquiry and providing instructions to download the brochure). Your system can also follow up automatically after a few days with that specific prospect asking if they have any other questions or if you could be of any help.

This is, in essence, business process automation. You are automating the different business processes within your business. The beauty of automating this is the zero-involvement from your business. Let's take this a step further. If the prospect does decide to buy the specific product, they can purchase it directly from your web site (via a shopping cart). Your web site will already know what your prospect had received so you can "speed up" the process by simply collecting payment information over a secure line, process the transaction and then send new shipping details to your customer. The prospects details now go into the customer database (because you have converted a prospect into a customer). The order details automatically get sent to your order-processing department for order fulfillment. When the order is shipped, your order-processing department updates the "system" with ETA for the product. Your customer can now automatically track the status of their order. And you can actually get an overview of how many orders were received, shipped, transacted; all through a browser. Even if you were holidaying and were miles away from home/office.

Can you think of all the costs you have saved by automating routine, mundane tasks that have typically needed human intervention in the past?

That, in essence, is the power of automation.

Elvin Picardo
Delivering Net Results to Small Business
Author of numerous articles on Web Development and Internet Marketing
10723 159th St, Surrey, BC V4N 3J1 Canada
http://www.netmedian.com

Contact me

In The News:


Building Your Business for Success in 2005

It's a strange anomaly.Most people who set out to start... Read More

Leveraging Business Relationships for more Profits

When should you leverage the relationship?Leveraging sometimes brings a negative... Read More

Effective Customer Interviews Make Life Much Easier!

One of the critical success factors for service-related businesses is... Read More

11 Things Small Business Owners Can Learn From Rudy Giuliani

1. Leadership Is Learned ? While many people appear to... Read More

Dont Wait - Sell The Future Now!

Just as you are about to say "good-bye" to your... Read More

Small Business and Branding ? Why and How?

When we speak of branding most of the time people... Read More

Why Internet Shopping is the New Mall of the Future

Last year, trillions of dollars transferred hands on the internet... Read More

More Business Card Uses

Why would you use an event pass?Event passes are often... Read More

Starting Your Small Business

Where do you find more customers?How do you compete with... Read More

What is Business Process Automation?

Business Process Automation or BPA for short. This was a... Read More

11 Benefits of Starting a House Cleaning Business

One of the biggest fears people have about starting a... Read More

Internships: Good for Everyone

Many job applicants want a job but often do not... Read More

Breaking The Chains!

Everyday, customers and business owners are bombarded with billboards, logos,... Read More

FTC Adding to the Franchise Rule

Last summer the FTC put forth a report and then... Read More

432 Page Franchise Report by the FTC

The Federal Trade Commission is upgrading the franchise law and... Read More

Motorcycle Detailing Procedures Manual Sample Outline

If you are a motorcycle detailer and need to expand... Read More

The Most Important Decision of Your Massage Business Career

Don't you find that there are so many decisions you... Read More

Temporary Staffing Agency: How to Start

The temporary staffing industry continues to expand, with yearly double-digit... Read More

Its Spring - Time For A Compensation Program Tune Up

Now that winter has passed, the annual ritual of spring... Read More

Conquering Confidence Killers for Small Business Success

"The way to develop self-confidence is to do the thing... Read More

Asking the RIGHT Questions

Which questions do you need to ask to even get... Read More

Small Business Franchise Opportunities

Many businesses offer small business franchise opportunities. There are many... Read More

Small Business Success - It?s a Matter of Confidence

I was floored! I couldn't believe what they were saying!... Read More

Get Out Of The Rut And Back On the Track

Do you sometimes find yourself just going "through the motions"... Read More

Why Small Businesses Need Both A Logo And An Identity System

Experts urge small business owners to "brand" their business ?... Read More