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Why and How Should You Digitize Workflows?

If you work in manufacturing, you’re probably no stranger to the phrase “digital transformation.” To digitize workflows isn’t an easy task, but it can be done.

For many companies, this means deploying manufacturing workflow software and hardware that helps employees gather and act on data so that the entire set up is a few clicks automated.

But what does it mean for your manufacturing workflows?

In this post, we’ll look at why and how you should digitize workflows, starting with a brief definition of what a workflow is. We’ll discuss some of the key benefits of digitizing your manufacturing workflows, plus a few things to keep in mind as you begin to execute on this important project. 

Why digitize workflows?

There are a number of reasons why manufacturers should digitize their workflows. First, it will help them increase productivity, efficiency, visibility and collaboration among the employees. Secondly, it will reduce errors in the workplace which can lead to increased costs for the company in terms of time spent on fixing those errors. 

It also helps increase employee engagement and satisfaction leading to higher retention rates among your workforce. This means that there will be more experienced people working at your company because they’ve stayed longer than they would have without digitizing their processes! 

Which areas of workflow should be digitized? 

One of the hottest topics in business is the rise of robotics and automation. In fact, some predict that in as soon as ten years, more than one-third of today’s jobs will be performed by robots and other automated technology. 

But which areas should be digitized that can make your workflow fully automated? Here they are: 

  • Accounting and finance for payment processing. The company automatically recognizes transactions and routes them to appropriate accounts payable departments. 
  • Employee onboarding. Efficiently register new employees from any web-enabled device, including smartwatches and home devices. The platform captures employee data into a central database where it is accessible across the organization in real-time. 
  • Customer service claims processing. Integrated intelligence curates internal services and external vendors to provide a single point of contact for clients.  

Digital workflows can eliminate mundane, repetitive tasks by securely automating workflows and business processes. It reduces errors, saves time and money, ensures employee compliance, and provides real-time visibility into daily operations.  

If you are thinking of expanding your business among competitors, a digitized workflow offers solutions that allow you to expand your workforce or reduce staff while increasing productivity and accuracy. 

How do you actually digitize workflows? 

digitize-workflows

1) Set goals and requirements

The first step is to set goals before digitizing manufacturing workflows and implement technologies to areas where improvement is immediately needed.  

A goal is what you are trying to achieve with digitized manufacturing workflows. It may be to achieve better efficiency, cost savings, improved quality and more customer loyalty. Goals should be measurable and specific enough so that there’s an expectation that they can be achieved in a reasonable timeframe. 

2) Identify the stakeholders

The next step is to identify the stakeholders. Stakeholders usually include product managers, engineers, IT staff and business analysts. You should also consider other people who are involved in the manufacturing process, such as customers or consumers. 

For each stakeholder you identified in your first step (the primary one being ‘yourself’), you need to answer the following questions: 

  • Who are they? 
  • What is their role? 
  • What are their responsibilities? 
  • What are their goals and requirements? 

3) Create a holistic plan

In addition to the technical aspects of implementing different systems in a way that works for your business needs, it’s also important to understand their business processes as well as how they fit together with one another.  

You want integration between these systems so you can see all of your data in one place instead of having multiple disconnected sets of information stored separately—which means that you may need some assistance from an experienced consultant or partner when building out this part of your strategy. 

4) Look for the right platform and tools

Aside from looking into the right automation tool, you should also consider the platform that is going to serve as your foundation. This is where you will store all of your workflows, robots, and other resources. You need to choose a system that has good scalability and flexibility so it can grow with your business. 

The right platform should have features like: 

  • A robust list of available APIs for third-party integration with other systems. 
  • Easy-to-use drag-and-drop user interface (UI); and 
  • Data visualization tools such as dashboards or charts that provide valuable insights from machine learning data. 

How can a software or tool digitize workflows?

The technology is still new and under development, so it’s important to try it out as soon as possible 

There are multiple ways to go about implementing the technical solution, and there’s tons of valuable information and expert opinions on the tech being developed. 

You could benefit from digitizing your own manufacturing workflows since there’s a chance you’d be able to increase revenue, reduce costs, improve client relations, cut waiting time for clients, and more. 

There are manufacturing workflow transformation tools and platforms available for you to digitize your manufacturing workflows. These tools can help you digitize your manufacturing workflows without coding or software. 

These tools and platforms can help you digitize your manufacturing workflows without great efforts. 

Conclusion

The promise of digital transformation calls for a new way of thinking. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the manufacturing industry, where the old ways are rapidly fading into obsolescence. But as companies embrace digital transformation, they will find that their businesses can be healthier and more vital than ever before.

Overall, the benefits of a digital manufacturing process cannot be overstated. Companies that go digital for their manufacturing activities are more likely to meet their production needs and improve customer service, while reducing costs and increasing profits.

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