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As you begin to scale your business, the sheer number of things that need to get done can seem overwhelming.

And while you don’t have to do everything yourself, even with a great team behind you, it can still become too much for you to handle.

That’s where smart automation comes in.

By automating your business in certain ways, you can take either repetitive or once difficult tasks or responsibilities and simplify everything so that it’s far easier to manage, often reducing the amount of work they take to complete on a consistent basis. Not to mention helping you combat competition. 

Is automation all about technology?

Keep in mind that automation doesn’t only have to do with tech-related improvements you can make.

In the list, below, we will mention some amazing additions or adjustments you can make related to modern tech that can be used as a tool for helping automate parts of your business.

However, there’s also a lot you can do that simply has to do with how you manage your team and work on a day-to-day basis.

Here are 5 ways to automate your business and get more done in less time and with less hassle. 

5 Ways to automate your business that will save you time and money

1. Streamline task management 

One of the easiest things you can do right off the bat is to streamline your task management and other similar systems such as communication.

Software like Slack can help centralize communication, reducing regurgitation so that everyone can get key messages from the same place (preferably, a second or third time after hearing about it in the meeting). 

Ways to automate your business

And software like Asana can help organize your task management, doing things like: 

  • Creating a visual board to track the progress of tasks
  • Managing a calendar to chart the schedule of content, product updates, and anything else, and
  • Giving employees a centralized place to manage their current tasks via their inbox. 
Ways to automate your business

Plus, in a surprise twist (well, maybe not so much considering modern software), Slack and Asana integrate with one another, allowing the two to works seamlessly. 

In addition to this, you can organize appointments with something like Doodle, almost fully automating the process of scheduling out meetings throughout your week. 

Ways to automate your business

And if you set up Google Calendar integration, those appointments get dropped straight into your calendar where you can view everything in one place. 

The amount of time and hassle you can cut down on just by using these few tools is immense, especially if you find yourself in several meetings a day or have a newly budding team that’s still communicating primarily through email or strictly verbally. 

2. Set clear policies and systems for your internal team– then outsource for expertise

When it comes to automation, systems are your friend. 

You don’t want to bog your team down with protocol, but by setting up clear policies and systems for your internal team to operate under, you take out a lot of the guesswork from their day-to-day work. 

Why is this so big? It not only saves you time by reducing the number of occasions where an employee has to get your attention to ask you how to handle a situation, it keeps them from losing their own flow throughout the day by you not being a bottleneck. 

The make these procedures ideal for your team, remain open to their input throughout the journey of establishing and testing these different systems out. Hear what they have to say and make adjustments to help them and you work better as a whole. 

Next, once you’ve done that, save time and maximize your results by outsourcing for expertise to freelancers and agencies on sites like Upwork

Your team is ideal for everyday work. However, when you need to run a big marketing campaign or something similar, it can be better to hire an outside expert as they’re likely better in their specific field than anyone on the team (of which employees tend to be more generalists) and are motivated to do a good job compared to a regular employee. 

3. Use AI and machine learning systems

Still somewhat vague and confusing terms, AI and machine learning, as they pertain to business, are quickly becoming invaluable for a number of reasons. 

In fact, you may already be utilizing some form of machine learning or AI without even realizing it. 

One major example is Google Cloud or Microsoft Azure, both being machine learning and automation platforms which are being updated regularly with new tools that give you the ability to do things like: 

  • Turn data into the optimal ad spend campaign
  • Or to optimize pricing based on customer behavior
Ways to automate your business

With AI and machine learning, you can take data your business already has and use it to maximize what you’re already doing, maximizing results and making everything more efficient. 

4. Document everything

You know how they always say we shouldn’t forget our history, lest we repeat the same mistakes? The same can be said for your business.

By documenting everything, including what you did for a particular project or campaign, how much you spent and how, timeframes, results, and anything else important, you have something you can look back on to inform future decisions.

What does this have to do with automation? 

Decision-making is a critical part of any business, and it only becomes more important the larger the business becomes. 

Documenting everything in this way means you spend less time in decision-making later when the time comes to pull the trigger on a new project because you can use your historical data to inform the new decisions related to that project, essentially semi-automating your decision making. 

5. Create a lead generation system

The various collective tools of digital marketing, from ESPs like Mailchimp and ConvertKit to Facebook Ads,  have given businesses the ability to create a lead generation system like nothing that has ever been seen before. 

Where before businesses had to run advertising campaigns in newspapers, or billboards, and T.V. commercials that hopefully led to new leads, now it’s very different.

Now, you can create a campaign that is almost fully automated, from the sharing of new content to the running of ads, collecting emails, and email marketing.

Huge sections of modern marketing can be semi-automated, freeing you up for more specific marketing efforts as well as to optimize those campaigns over time (something that machine learning can help automate as well).

Look for ways to automate your business– the right way

Automation can never be 100%. After all, we’re not quite ready for robots to take over. 

However, many of the processes within your business can be automated, saving you huge chunks of time and money, including:

  • Decision making
  • Marketing campaign optimization
  • Marketing campaign execution
  • Communication
  • Task management
  • And even just daily internal goings-on

So, use these tips to help bring the power of automation to your business and watch how it helps you free up more time and energy for other things that deserve your attention, allowing your business to grow that much faster.