1. Delicate Requests
Sensitive issues need to be dealt with, but automating them can make the whole process more comfortable for everyone involved. Nobody wants to be the person bringing up a toilet-paper supply issue every week.
Allowing employees to requisition things on their own bypasses awkward conversations and helps quieter employees speak up about situations that might otherwise lead to job dissatisfaction.
2. Payroll Questions
Remote work has increased by 37 percent in the past three years, and with a rising number of employers embracing flexi-time and other less traditional schedules, keeping track of who’s worked how many hours can get complicated.
Enabling employees to automatically raise queries about their commission or salary can reduce admin time and help people feel more comfortable about speaking up. New hires in particular may feel awkward asking for clarification where salary is concerned, and automation can make it much less daunting.
This also positively impacts accounting, by reducing likelihood of discrepancies, and the time it takes to resolve them.
3. Asset Tracking
With so much portable technology in the mix, an accurate and reliable system is essential to know where things are, what condition they’re in, and who is currently responsible for them. Think of your assets as books in a library: you need to know who has them and when they’re due back. This prevents ghost assets, and all the lost time and financial burdens that go with them.
“A ghost asset is a fixed asset that appears on the general ledger but can’t be accounted for in real life because that asset has been lost, stolen, or rendered unusable,” explains System ID. With assets like smartphones, tablets, computers and company cars — losses add up quickly.
4. Voting on Celebrations
Company birthday? Christmas meal? Friday-night drinks? While automating a party may not sound particularly festive, allowing employees to vote on themes, restaurants or activities will make them feel more engaged, valued and productive. Automating the way you gather employee input has a number of benefits, including:
5. Vacation Planning
Major holidays and sporting events are a big deal to a lot of people — a big enough deal that they’ll scramble to schedule time off almost a year in advance. Rather than navigating no-win debates over who deserves it most, automate the entire request process so all you need to do is approve it.
This also makes it easier to plan absences in a way that minimizes disruption and eases workload distribution — because an entire department picking the same week for a vacation is not something you want to deal with.
6. Workplace Wellness
To prevent health issues, workstation ergonomics must be assessed regularly. Rather than handing each employee a 10-page questionnaire on the adjustability of their office chair, try automating a survey that goes out on a recurring schedule.
Disruption is minimized, as employees can complete the survey when it suits them, and you’ll likely get more honest responses. It's easier to type “my monitor flickers crazy colors, but it never happens when anyone else is looking” than it is to admit it out loud.
Automating the workplace is empowering for employees, while offering managers the benefit of streamlined systems they can easily track. These six ideas are just a start, though. Check out the infographic below for even more ways to put automation to work for your business.