Automation isn't a luxury or status symbol any more. It is about using machine intelligence to automate repetitive tasks in an organisation to improve efficiency and productivity.
by Dhwani Mehta, Director, OpportuneHR
One of the biggest mistakes that small businesses make is, they think small. The founders and business owners often say, 'we are too small a company to automate our business operations. Automation is meant only for bigger organisations.'
Also, another point of resistance is: They think automation is expensive.
Let us examine this a little.
Automation isn't a luxury or status symbol any more. It is about using machine intelligence to automate repetitive tasks in an organisation to improve efficiency and productivity. The cumbersome, boring work that is prone to human error can be easily automated.
For example, tasks like entering data in excel sheets, merging data from various registers, and then validating the results again. These activities that the HR team must do every month to calculate the attendance, overtime, increments, leave, and salaries can be automated saving resources and time.
These tasks are often done at the end of the month. And the deadline pressures compel business owners themselves to sit with HR and account teams. The question is, is putting senior managements’ time into these tasks worth it? Because MSME owners and startup founders are short on time. They have the responsibility of meeting business targets, product demonstrations and must liaison for investments in their company.
HR automation modules like Time and attendance, Payroll, and Leave Management can take a lot of pressure off the HR team. In fact, salaries can be disbursed on a given date. Compliance reports are always ready with the click of a button.
These tools are especially useful for small business owners. As their bandwidth is low, and software can do a lot of these cumbersome tasks efficiently, automation is a smart choice to boost business growth.
Now let's look at other benefits.
Good Policy Foundation:
The policy foundations are created in the early stages of the business when the workforce size is about 100 to 300 employees. More often than not, the expertise needed to create these policies is not in-house and hiring senior professionals is not always affordable. Even onboarding them as part-time consultants can prove costly in the early stages of the business. That's why most businesses tend to create arbitrary HR policies.
Again, using HR automation is a good solution. Automation solutions are built taking into consideration the best industry practices. Once you opt for automation, you also introduce good HR practices into your business. With HRTech and automation, healthy HR practices become an integral part of the organisation culture.
One of the biggest business benefits of automation is the scalability it offers. Businesses can scale up 2X, 5X or 10X based on their goals and automation strategies. It is almost impossible to design and create new systems to keep up with the growth. This is where automation solutions can be of great aid to business growth.
Attract Better Talent:
Another area where automation makes a real difference is in recruitment and onboarding. Attracting and retaining skilled talent has always been a major challenge for SMEs. However, with modern solutions like application tracking systems, video interviews, and onboarding dashboards HR teams can create a positive impression on the potential candidates.
Using mobile applications for attendance tracking and other functions can help candidates stay connected with just a few clicks. This will create a positive employee experience.
Cost Control and True Billing:
Now, to the most important objection against automation:
In reality automation can save a lot of money for MSME and startup businesses!
Most cloud-based, SaaS automation providers charge based on the number of employees. This means you pay according to your team size. Moreover, you don't need to go for a biometric device to have modern attendance and payroll solutions working for you. The timesheet module helps you understand how much time is needed for a client's work, and you can charge accordingly. It really helps when you can show the data when you negotiate with the client.
So, it absolutely makes sense for MSME and startup founders to opt for HR automation. It is affordable, effective and helps introduce the best HR practices in the organisation.
At OpportuneHR, we have seen that MSME and startups using HR automation grow faster than their peers. Our solution instills a sense of discipline, result orientation and accountability in the organization.
If you have any questions regarding HR automation for attendance, payroll and other HR processes feel free to connect with our MSME and Startup helpline.
About the Author:
Dhwani Mehta is Director of opportuneHR.com, India's leading HRMS solution platform designed for MSMEs and Startups. An alumnus of Mithibai College, Mumbai, he is an HR automation thought leader, mentor to entrepreneurs and a passionate video gamer.