Top Automation Benefits For SMEs

automation benefits for SME automating small business processes

Automation was first feared by manufacturing workers and small independent businesses as a technological advancement that would take their jobs. With expensive robots able to accurately and efficiently assemble products, the fear was that small businesses would be priced out of the market and manufacturing workers would be replaced by robotics. 

But in actuality, automation can be the saving grace for small businesses. Automation allows SMEs (small to medium sized enterprise businesses) to consistently produce high-quality products while freeing up their workforce for things that only humans can do right now. 

Automation can take many forms - from email marketing and digital marketing automation tools to bookmaking to sales and lead generation to the assembly of ships or vehicles. Anything that can be automated will be a job saved in the long term. Even the smallest of small businesses will benefit from cutting out time-intensive, monotonous, repetitive day-to-day tasks so they can focus on their company's core competencies.

Benefits Of Automating For SMEs 

The experts at RNA Automation believe that automation can benefit every business. No matter what you make your business in, there are benefits of automating at least some tasks. Whilst a lot of automation software is available online (there’s no end to software that automates bookkeeping, or supply chain management etc) there are also larger scale automation systems for bigger jobs (like product design and production). 

For instance, RNA Automation create bespoke vision inspection systems that can accurately perform quality control for 100% of products. Automation companies such as RNA can develop and produce bespoke automation systems to exactly suit your manufacturing needs. Whilst this is an expensive process, the benefits can far outweigh the cost for many businesses. 

What Are The Primary Benefits Of Automation For Small Businesses? 

1. Reduced Human Error 

Humans aren’t perfect. People have bad days and don’t perform at their best all day every day. However, in business when we make errors they can have big consequences, whether this is an accounting mistake or a missed quality check. Human error can cost money and jobs on a large scale. Automating as many jobs as possible will reduce these errors. 

2. Higher Production And Efficiency Levels 

As previously mentioned, some automation systems might seem too pricey for small start ups. However (especially in manufacturing) sometimes you can’t get off the ground without the automation there to affordably build your products. Better quality/higher quantity of automation systems will result in higher productivity levels, as well as freeing you up to do the things you can’t automate. 

Automation not only saves you time by increasing your production, but it can also save you valuable time by doing things for you that are time intensive. Small business owners seem to never have enough time. There are so many tasks to complete daily from marketing, bookkeeping, updating social media accounts, emails, sourcing clients, networking and so on.  Automation can save you this time. Something as simple as using social media schedulers can automate your social media feeds, saving hours every single week. 

3. Increased Safety And Reduced Risk

Manufacturing is statistically a risky business to be in, with (on average) about 3,000 injuries and 10 deaths per year in the UK. Automating some production practices can minimize the danger, by allowing machines to take on the riskier jobs. It's much better for your machines to become damaged or destroyed (often covered by insurance or warranties and/or written off as business expenses) than a single human life be injured or lost!

4. Cost Cutting For Better Business Budgets

Mistakes are costly to rectify. A workforce costs money, and lots of it. Using automation tools can free up your labor hours and allow your staff time to focus on other tasks within the business. Machinery and software can be expensive, but you should think of it as an investment that will help you scale up your business. 

What Processes Should SMEs Start Automating? 

Small businesses (whether in manufacturing or otherwise) can consider many automation opportunities. Of course, business in manufacturing could benefit from automation systems specially purpose-built for them, but there are automation systems and software that can suit even sole traders. 

• Marketing And Sales Processes

Did you know there’s automation software for lead generation? How about automating for SEO? Customer report generation? There’s software out there to do almost everything for you, so you can let your automated marketing tick along happily in the background whilst focusing more on the day-to-day running of things. 

We exist in the modern digital age, so there’s also social media to contend with. While you still mostly have to generate your own content, scheduling software can help you get work done without devolving into mindless scrolling. Read this article from Forbes.com for more tips on marketing and sales automation. 

• Accounting And Bookkeeping

There’s a reason many businesses work with accountants rather than undertaking their own bookkeeping. Trusting experts with your finances is better than taking a well-meaning crack at it yourself, right? So why not trust automated accounting software? 

• Operations Management

Overseeing the operations of even a small business is a full time job, from supply chain management to employee scheduling to warehouse operations. Allowing automated software to take on these jobs can allow managers more time to spend working on scaling up their business, or putting in face time with their workforce. 

How Can Automation Help My Small Business? 

You don’t need to go fully automated with your SME, but anything that can save valuable working hours, money and time, while also increasing productivity and decreasing risks and error will assist all businesses... from the smallest sole proprietor to the largest global corporation. 

Read through this infographic from RNA automation for more information on how automation can help your company. 

What has automation done for your small business lately? And what will it do for your SME in 2021 and beyond?

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