STEP TWO: BUSINESS PRIORITIES

With your key stakeholders mapped out, it is important to first understand their needs and desires as well as the priorities of the business as a whole. This enables you to more easily brainstorm the different processes which may be suitable for automation, and can also be used as a tool in which to sell automation into different departments.

Below are the 6 categories of improvement that automation will bring:

  • Save manual hours and repurpose employee time
  • Improve quality through error reduction
  • Streamline mission critical processes
  • Improve employee experience/morale
  • Improve customer satisfaction
  • Adherence to regulatory compliance

When engaging with different stakeholders, ask them to go through each of the improvement categories and assign a percentage as to how important it is to them/their department. The combined total of these percentages needs to be 100%. Where several stakeholders may exist in one area, you could also take their different percentages and divide by the number of people. The figures produced will be used later on and so should be recorded.

Example

Throughout this whitepaper we will be following one example so you can see the full evaluation process.

 

A busy aerospace manufacturer has a lot of uncommon components they need. Their team of two people in procurement need to onboard 50 new suppliers each month. They want to evaluate this process to see its suitability for automation. When the procurement team were asked to rate their needs against impact they gave the following percentages:

Save manual hours and repurpose employee time

Improve quality through error reduction

Streamline mission critical processes

Improve employee experience/morale

Improve customer satisfaction

Adhere to regulatory compliance

10%

15%

35%

20%

5%

15%

100%

In evaluating the process of onboarding suppliers against the priorities of the purchasing department we could assess that; saving manual hours and repurposing employee time, improving quality through error reduction, and adhering to regulatory compliance, would be benefits realised through the automation of this process. This would mean a 40% match in the onboarding process to priorities.

Once you have considered your business priorities, you should then have a good idea of where you’re most likely to see Return On Investment from automation. At this stage it might be wise to involve your subject matter experts to help with brainstorming processes which could be automated.

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