Automated workflows: 6 benefits for your flexible workspace

By Amanda Fanoun · 07.07.2016 · 5 MIN READ

By Justin Harley, Vice President of International Business development at essensys

 

Think of workflow automation as a way to delight your customers by transforming the quality and consistency of your service.

A workflow is a sequence of steps and actions that need to happen for a business process to complete. Today, in most shared workspaces, this is all manual. Imagine if you could remove repetitive and time-consuming tasks while enhancing human interactions with your customers too!

Automated workflows can have a major impact across your workspace – from sales enquiries to on-boarding customers. I’d like to share an example, as well as six key benefits to staff and customers.

 

Boosting your lead-to-tour conversion ratio

When booking a medical appointment, you probably receive an instant confirmation message with the time and date via SMS, followed by a reminder the day before. An employee could have sent out these notifications manually but that would be a waste of precious time and resource. Instead, it’s seamlessly generated via workflow automation.

Similarly, you can apply automated workflows to a crucial element of the shared space sales process: the personal tour. Here are five examples of steps you could set up for a tour workflow to provide a superb experience and turn no-shows into show-stopping successes!

    A) Upon booking a tour, a personalised SMS is sent to the prospect, with a map and details of who to contact if needed.
    B) A reminder message is automatically triggered shortly before the tour.
    C) Your reception staff are reminded of the prospect’s details and requirements to best prepare the welcome experience.
    D) A follow-up message is sent after the tour, thanking the prospect and linking them to an embedded feedback survey (to help refine future visits), and telling them about next steps (to steer them towards a purchase decision).
    E) Your salesperson, whose calendar was automatically updated regarding the tour, is reminded to follow up afterwards.

The above workflow makes your prospect more likely to not only turn up for the tour but also become customer. No last-minute rush – your staff are fully prepared to fulfil the prospect’s specific tour preferences and to provide a fantastic first impression.

Now let’s look into six of the main benefits of implementing workflow automation in your workplace.

 

1. Enhance the human experience

A misconception is that automation de-personalises customer service. In fact, it enhances it. It enables you to create more interactions and free up your staff to spend more time developing more personal connections and customer intimacy. Today, we all expect both human and non-human contact.

 

2. Reduce churn

You can apply workflow automation to all customer touch points, in particular the entire customer on-boarding process. The service you deliver during this crucial time becomes more seamless and consistent. Later, you can better engage with your customers by scheduling ongoing updates and valuable, personalised communications. This all helps reduce your customer churn rate. Flexible workspaces are increasingly about membership and customer lifetime value, so this is priceless.

 

3. Focus on revenue-generating activities

With automated workflows in place, your staff have more time to focus on impactful activities, from developing your customer base to building a community and upselling services. Let workflow automation soak up lower value tasks, such as checking database duplicates and setting reminders. Concentrating on higher value activities has the extra benefit of boosting staff morale and fostering innovation.

 

4. Increase your team’s productivity

Workflow automation is about less time behind a desk and more time with your prospects and customers. Workflows can be created for managing day-to-day personal and team tasks – enhancing internal communications and saving staff from having to disturb each other or wait for updates on projects. Automatic notifications and status updates speed up task progression and cut bottlenecks.

 

5. Reduce errors

Human error costs businesses a crazy amount of time and money. Why would you not use workflows which prompt staff about overlooked tasks before it’s too late? Let’s face it, we all forget to do things. Workflows catch actions before they fall through the cracks.

 

6. Empower employees to manage their own workload

Automatic notifications spare managers from having to constantly check their team’s progress. This transparency dissipates micro-management and empowers everyone to get on with the task in hand. Managers can shift their focus to the macro level.

Workflow automation is about much more than saving time and improving efficiency. With the right system in place, it can have a massive impact across your workspace. It can empower each of your employees – including centre managers, sales and finance staff – to achieve superior results, faster and more enjoyably. Above all, workflow automation can help you and your team deliver a much better service, ultimately driving more sales and delighting your customers.

About the Author

Amanda Fanoun

I've been writing content about flexible office and technology for essensys since 2015. My focus is to bring engaging and insightful perspectives to the flexible workspace sector of the commercial real estate industry.