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Business Process Automation with MS Power Platform

In the modern age, where digital transformation is more than just a buzzword, businesses around the world are looking for new ways to make their operations more efficient and processes more productive. This can be achieved through business process automation (BPA) integrating multiple technologies, tools and platforms into a single system.

Why do you need to automate business processes?

Today’s businesses face many challenges to their efficiency and productivity. According to recent market research, a significant proportion of companies report delays in application development, still rely on outdated paper-based processes and struggle with siloed systems(read more here). These problems are addressed by advanced technologies such as Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Digital Process Automation (DPA) that create seamless, digital business processes.

What is hyper-automation?

Hyper-automation goes beyond traditional automation and offers a complementary combination of technologies to enhance worker skills. Using AI and machine learning tools, companies can automate complex processes that used to rely on human labour. This shift not only improves the accuracy and speed of processes, but also gives staff more time to focus on strategic tasks, thus driving innovation and growth.

Microsoft Power Platform - business automation tool

Microsoft Power Platform excels in business process automation by offering a suite of applications from A to Z, tailored to any industry. The platform includes:

  • Power BI: provides powerful tools for business data analysis, visualisation and insights.
  • Power Apps: allows users to create customised apps without programming knowledge.
  • Power Automate: automates repetitive tasks and processes.
  • Power Virtual Agents: create intelligent chat-bots to communicate with customers and employees.

This suite is complemented by Microsoft security applications that ensure automated processes are not only efficient but also secure. Microsoft Power Platform is used by organisations like Coca-Cola Bottling Company United and T-Mobile to solve specific business problems with their processes. Coca-Cola, for example, used these tools during a phase of rapid expansion, automating key processes that had previously been done manually. “As part of the merger with Sprint, T-Mobile used Power Automate to synchronise systems and reduce data entry errors to zero.

Find out why employees may resist the introduction of automated analytics solutions:

An informative slide outlining various digital solution categories in a corporate setting. The slide is divided into three main sections: User Experiences, Process Automation, and Data and Services. Each section is further broken down into specific technologies such as Low-Code Applications, Robotic Process Automation, and Cloud Services, among others. Icons accompany each technology type for visual representation. The layout is clear and structured, designed to efficiently convey the range of technologies and tools available in an organizational framework.

Steps in the business automation process

Automation may seem complex, but following structured steps can ensure that processes are automated efficiently and safely. Microsoft Power Platform offers a four-step methodology to help businesses effectively harness the power of automation. The steps are: discover, automate, harmonise and extend.

1. Discover

Before starting any automation project, it is essential to understand which processes in your company are most suitable for automation. This includes auditing existing processes, identifying frequently repeated tasks that require a lot of manual work. Power Automate offers Process Advisor, a process tracking and visualisation tool to help identify process bottlenecks and opportunities for automation.

2. Automate

Going forward, the processes discovered need to be automated. Here, Power Automate allows you to create flows that automate repetitive tasks and processes. This includes everything from simple data transfers between systems to more complex workflows involving multiple system components.

3. Orchestrate

Once the deployment is complete, the management and optimisation of the integrated automation processes need to be fine-tuned to ensure that all components work smoothly and efficiently. This involves coordinating the data flows and tasks performed by different automation technologies. Power Automate allows you to create and control complex orchestration schemes that ensure all parts of the system work in harmony.

4. Extend

The final step is the development of automation solutions, integrating new technologies that help achieve even greater efficiency. This includes building API connections that allow Power Automate flows to communicate with external services and systems, as well as using AI and machine learning models to make processes even smarter.

Steps for business process automation

Future perspectives: towards the automated enterprise

The future of business processes is inseparable from automation. As organisations continue to implement digital transformations in the future, the integration of RPA, AI and DPA will become more common in various business processes. Microsoft Power Platform, offering a suite of robotics tools, giving businesses the capabilities they need to innovate. Automation is not just about technology; it’s about strategically improving business processes to significantly improve efficiency, accuracy and productivity. With platforms such as Microsoft Power Platform, the journey towards the automated enterprise is not only possible, it is achievable.

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