Increasing automation without losing the personal touch
Posted on by Jo Shaw
Estimated read time: 3 mins
Successful businesses are managing to scale their operations by automating tasks, while balancing out the need for a human touch.
As a business owner, time is precious, so whenever you find yourself repeating a task or process over and over again, it could be time to think about automating it. Marketing, sales and customer service are all key areas where automation can help you to streamline and increase your efficiency. However, don’t forget to consider your customers’ experience. Trust and loyalty can sometimes only be created and maintained through a personal relationship.
Read on for some top tips on how to balance automation with the human touch.
- No one-size-fits-all approach
Consider the situations where your customers will happily use an automated system and those where they would really prefer a human interaction. For example, many people are happy to book or change appointments through an online booking system, but when it comes to getting some expert advice about a particular product, a list of FAQs on a website probably won’t cut it.
- Treat customers as individuals
Customers want to feel like an individual, so give them choice around how they interact with you and keep their options open. Some will be comfortable with self-service, but others will really appreciate being able to chat to someone on the phone or visit your premises.
- Give yourself time to focus on important tasks
Automate admin tasks to leave you feeling like you have an extra pair of hands and free up your time to focus on your customers.
- Automate regular invoices and send reminders for late payments.
- Use file sharing systems to ensure everyone in your team has the latest version of a document.
- Look into free conferencing tools to host meetings remotely, saving you money and travel time.
- You could even look into virtual assistant software powered by speech recognition, which answers calls and makes bookings on your behalf.
- Use tools such as Experian Business Express credit reports, which do the hard work for you and provide daily monitoring alerts direct into your inbox for any company, client or supplier.
- Listen carefully
It will soon be obvious if your streamlining efforts are driving away customers. Watch how people respond to any new systems you implement and make changes accordingly. Don’t be afraid to make tweaks as you go to make sure it works for you and your business.
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