By now, it’s likely that most companies are familiar with the phrase “Great Resignation” or even have experienced its effects. First introduced in early 2021, the term describes the increasing number of professionals across industries leaving their jobs in search of higher wages, more flexibility, and new opportunities—and the numbers aren’t slowing. An estimated 40% of workers across the globe are still considering switching to new roles and companies this year.
While many organizations struggle to combat this disruption to their workforce, several strategies exist that can help slow churn and improve work environments for current and new employees. One strategy is eliminating parts of jobs that are causing dissatisfaction, frustration, and productivity loss. Workflow automation isn’t a new concept, but companies must start evaluating their current processes and find new ways automation can benefit their employees.
In this blog post, you’ll learn about the benefits of automating internal processes and workflow automation practices you can use across your entire organization.
How workflow automation helps with employee retention
Automation has the potential to transform both daily workflows and in turn, transform an entire workplace. While automation is already shown to improve the bottom line, it also makes work more productive, collaborative, and rewarding for employees. Teams relieved of dull, repetitive tasks gain hours back each week to spend on meaningful projects that ultimately feel more stimulating and satisfying. Three main things workplace automation can help with include:
- Productivity – Automation tools that complete manual tasks allow teams to focus on the more comprehensive and challenging projects, reduce employee workload and burnout, and achieve higher quality project outcomes.
- Communication – 90% of employees believe that effective communication is crucial for maintaining a positive work culture. With workflow automation, teams can streamline communication, stay up to date, and send notifications without falling behind on tasks.
- Engagement – Eliminating mundane or repetitive tasks with workflow automation software helps employees remain productive and engaged, fosters creativity and innovation, and improves overall results.
Facing the Great Resignation across an entire organization
The Great Resignation is fueled by common frustrations related to burnout, lack of work-life balance, and disengagement. Virtually every department at an organization can help resolve these frustrations with some level of workflow automation. While automation isn’t the only solution companies should incorporate, it’s an ideal place to start to help improve workplace culture for their employees. The following examples demonstrate how workflow automation can ease burnout and disengagement among workers in any department.
HR departments are often plagued with manual processes for employee applications, interviews, and onboarding. These tasks can involve sorting candidates, sending request or follow-up emails, notifying employees about performance reviews, and more. HR professionals who spend hours bogged down in paperwork miss out on developing meaningful relationships with job candidates, addressing employee needs or performance reviews, and improving engagement with wellness programs.
Workflow automation to streamline recruitment processes eases unnecessary task burden and potential hiring bias of HR managers. To fill new positions quickly, HR teams can automate manual processes that rely on updating, notifying, or tracking new hires. These processes include applicant resume screening, pre-employment assessments, interview scheduling, and follow-up emails. Workflow automation is also ideal for processes involving multiple users, including background check agreements, contract signatures, and onboarding paperwork. With automation, HR teams can increase their value for employees while enhancing the recruitment process for job candidates.
At any given point, customer support representatives juggle multiple customer queries, support tickets, and everyday internal tasks. Without streamlined workflows or automation, a customer support team can quickly become overwhelmed and unproductive, which negatively impacts customer satisfaction. In fact, 78% of individuals decline a purchase due to a poor customer support experience, which further signifies the need for better internal workflows for this department.
Workflow automation for customer support teams creates a better experience for both the reps and the customers. In many cases, support questions fall into the same general categories. Automating responses for top questions eliminates repetitive tasks while ensuring that customers get direct responses quickly. Customer queries can also be automated to route directly to the right support rep, so no one has to spend time sifting through endless emails or support tickets. An automated ticket priority system also ensures that support teams are able to address the most critical issues first, without spending extra time organizing.
Marketing teams have a significant number of tasks and projects that require hours to strategize and implement. If more time is spent completing the same tasks each day, it can be difficult to remain productive and innovative, which will hurt all marketing efforts. Instead of wasting time on repetitive tasks, marketing teams relying on workflow automation only need to set up and optimize a campaign one time and simply monitor it to make occasional updates.
Marketing teams can easily automate email campaigns when a new lead comes through the pipeline or a new customer begins onboarding. While lessening the workload for marketing professionals, automated emails also ensure leads and customers receive helpful information in a timely manner. These emails not only offer value for prospects and customers but provide great marketing insights that can be used to further strategize campaigns. Additionally, lead generation web forms (trial signups, demo requests, or eBook downloads) can be automated to directly import contact information in a CRM. These streamlined data collection processes cut out manual data entry for marketing teams and provide easy data access for sales.
In an ideal world, sales teams could spend most of each day selling. But many sales reps are constantly distracted and lose productivity each day with manual data entry, unnecessary research, and administrative tasks like scheduling calls or emails. On average, this leaves many sales reps with only about 30% of their day free to actually sell their organization’s products or services. Not surprisingly, the more these teams can automate repetitive tasks, the more time they will have to do their actual jobs—selling.
Sales departments can implement workflow automation across many phases of the sales cycle, from prospecting to pre-call questionnaires to signing contracts. Another ideal area for automating processes is scheduling meetings. Instead of tedious back-and-forth communication with prospects, providing direct access to a sales rep’s calendar streamlines the experience for prospects and eliminates extra calls or emails. As noted above, web forms that capture prospect data and automatically import it into a CRM mean sales teams don’t need to spend hours in manual data entry.
Finance teams spend a great deal of time handling sensitive information for an organization and its customers. While errors are problematic for any department, an inaccuracy in any step of a financial process can be devastating and even affect an organization’s reputation. For finance departments, saving time, reducing error, and improving consistency are the greatest challenges—and all solvable with workflow automation.
Finance teams that switch to workflow automation can simplify and streamline core financial tasks, including invoicing, accounts payable, expense reporting, payroll, and tax documentation. One of the biggest time burdens for finance professionals is expense management, especially for large organizations. Though a complicated process, managing the receipts, reports, and reimbursements with an automated system drastically improves organization as well as accuracy and consistency. Specialized web forms that integrate fully with finance software make this process a breeze each month, for both financial teams and employees.
Executive and leadership teams at organizations face perhaps the biggest challenges in the midst of the Great Resignation. However, they also face the greatest opportunity to tackle this problem first-hand. Employees are resigning today for many reasons, but there remain a few top themes: toxic work culture and poor management. This puts leadership teams in a crucial position for addressing employee churn and taking steps to improve culture, benefits, flexibility, and more at their organizations.
One of the best ways to assess satisfaction and performance is through employee surveys. Workflow automation makes this process easy for leadership teams as well as HR managers. These surveys can be automatically scheduled annually or as frequently as leadership sees fit. Once the workflow is established, any notifications about the survey or follow-up reminders can also easily be automated to ensure employee engagement. Leadership teams can then receive an overview of the data compiled digitally from these surveys, making it easier to address issues and make improvements.
Simplify data collection with automated workflows
All departments have different goals and projects, but one thing these teams do have in common is the need to collect data and simplify processes. And when workflows are automated, departments run smoothly, making it possible for employees across an entire organization to boost productivity, engagement, and efficiency.
No matter the industry or department, FormAssembly’s powerful data collection platform enables teams to eliminate tedious processes. FormAssembly Workflow, our visual process builder, gives teams in every department the power to visually map out data collection roadmaps involving web forms, emails, integrations, and more. Using the Workflow Builder, users can distribute tasks to multiple participants (such as job candidates, HR professionals, and managers), stay updated on participants’ progress, and easily send data to reviewers and approvers. Plus, FormAssembly integrates directly with Salesforce, PayPal, and other common business systems.
Combatting the Great Resignation won’t be simple or easy, but there are steps every organization can take to ensure their employees are satisfied and productive in their jobs. Explore Workflow today to learn how this powerful solution can help improve process automation at your organization!