Automation is becoming a more persistent and necessary component of professional services organizations.
Firms that best leverage automation position themselves to improve the client experiences at each stage of interaction and drive increases in revenue. As noted in the recent post, Achieving Agility for Professional Services in the Digital Age, technologies are disrupting the way companies identify and deliver services and serve clients.
1. Improved productivity
Automation helps drive productivity at multiple phases of your workflow and output, including:
- Project Management. Automation tools allow team members to collaborate more effectively, identify and manage project risks, and gain real-time insights into progress and budgets.
- Resource Planning. Provide better staffing solutions that improve the impact of your firm’s work. Ensure that resources are maximized across projects and that in-house, contract, and remote assets can be deployed appropriately.
- Accounting and Expense Management. Automated tools reduce the amount of paperwork for consultants, assistants, and financial staff. Automation helps create more accurate and prompt billing, tracks payments and employee expenses, and improves the timeliness of invoices and reimbursements.
2. Better customer experiences
Customers today are looking for more in-depth services and insights, delivered rapidly, and in the moment of need. Automation helps deliver on these expectations, providing high levels of customer satisfaction and retention.
Automation tools allow for consultants and partners to complete deeper research dives faster, providing business intelligence and insights customers expect.
Powerful analytics tools associated with automation solutions provide firms with the chance to complete inputs and outputs faster. They also allow for new, real-time dashboards and reports that give clients new insights into performance, outcomes, and strategies.
Automation tools also ensure that deliverables are provided on time and on budget.
3. New delivery modes
Many professional services organizations are using automation to deliver self-service options for customers unwilling or unable to pay for in-person services. Knowledge bases, online calculators, and self-selected solutions are attractive options, opening up new revenue opportunities to firms. They can also be used as a way to attract new customers who may eventually be persuaded to engage with more complete solutions.
4. Better engaged employees
Automation may replace some work previously done by lower-level employees. However, the opportunity with automation is to help employees free up time for meaningful work with an impact on broader business objectives.
Collaboration tools help teams to work together more effectively and improve communication.
5. Better efficiency
Lag is the death knell in many organizations. Shifting orders from sales to delivery, securing and getting contracts approved and signed, and assigning resources all take time – and paperwork that can get lost in the shuffle. With enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, companies can instead take a broader view of customers and processes.
An ERP solution gives companies a way to integrate systems and data across the enterprise. Sales, finance, project management, and customer relations are integrated, with data, reports, and insights presented in real time. Employees will know the status of client relations, processes, and results in a seamless platform.
At NexTec Group, we work closely with professional services organizations to identify the right automation and ERP tools that help drive productivity and customer satisfaction. Our teams help identify the vendors and solutions that work best to achieve your goals.
Download the NexTec Corporate Brochure to learn more about how NexTec Group can help your professional services firm.