The Most Dangerous Sentence in Automation

Right we’ve lured you in with a baity title (!).

Stick with it though, we’re actually taking a look at something you should be wary of. You might have heard these words before, you might even have uttered them yourself. “But we’ve always done it this way”.

Those words are so charged – and speak to an unwillingness to change: a resistance which you need to know about before you implement automation.

Successful implementation of automation comes down to how willing the people involved are to change. The automation itself, that technical challenge, is very rarely the biggest hurdle that we have to help our clients leap over.

Really understanding how to make a process more efficient is the only place to start, before we even think about automation we need to think about why we want to automate.

Because Isn’t Why

Unfortunately, people who carry out their day to day tasks don’t often ask ‘why’ – and almost never in a constructive way. If we don’t understand why we want to change something it stands to reason that the solution probably won’t live up to expectation. That’s why the success of any automation that can be implemented relies hugely on the quality of the process which it sits on.

You might be familiar with the classic ‘5 Whys’ methodology originally conceived by Sakichi Toyoda. Essentially it states that if you ask ‘why’ of something 5 times then you will come to its root cause. While some people might criticise its simplicity, it is a remarkably effective tool for quickly making sense of a situation.

Don’t Just Look Within

Without asking why you’re going to become stagnant, you’ll find yourself, your processes, and your business in a rut. We all find ourselves in ever-changing environments, so processes have to adjust to keep pace with those shifts. To be competitive you need to be improving – always. Often, looking for external help with processes and automation is a great way of getting out of that slump.

Someone external is likely to see a process for what it truly is. They won’t have any attachment to it – which will likely stop them being blind to its inefficiencies. As a business, external assistance offers you a unique opportunity to have someone see what you do for the first time. Also, internal change can often be a struggle, but if you’re paying someone for their advice, all of a sudden it’s a lot easier to listen to (!).

We don’t want to sound like a broken record but automation is not a magic cure for bad processes. Automation and using robots is about applying a technology to an efficient process. To make a process better you have to understand it and not just assume it works because you’ve always done it that way – just ask why.

The thing we’ve always done is automation.The PAteam has extensive knowledge and tools that can help you understand and modify your process. Contact them today.

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