How to Use Automation to Get More Out of Your Data?

2 min read

News stories in the last year have talked nonstop about how advanced machine learning is becoming. Computers are now able to recognize natural language patterns and think more like humans.

In some cases, they can even reason. All the technological advances of artificial intelligence (AI) mean increasing chances for businesses to automate tasks humans would typically do.

You might wonder how a small organization would ever afford to automate things, though. Isn’t that the stuff of large corporations? Around 61% of marketers from all different sized companies feel AI is one of the most crucial components in their data management strategies.

Automation saves you time and makes you more productive, along with allowing you to decipher your collected data better. There are several ways businesses can use data automation for company growth.

Pass Off Repetitive Tasks

Some jobs are enough to make a human worker’s eyes cross. Many tasks involving data are so repetitive and mundane that businesses should truly automate them. One example would be entering sales figures. Data entry workers spend all day typing in the same numbers. Data science automation takes these duties and develops new ways to create adaptive solutions.

For example, if your salespeople have massive amounts of figures they need to add to the database to run reports, you can streamline much of this process with business intelligence. Instead of inputting values by hand, the system can pull that information from order sheets and inventory information on pricing.

Analyze Data More Reliably

Even small companies often have cumbersome amounts of data. It’s nearly impossible for a human to sort through all the facts and synthesize a report. However, a machine can do it in a minute or less by spitting out a chart and helping you create a presentation for your next meeting.

You can create sales forecast reports to set goals for your sales staff, look at what territories you cover and see which ones need an assigned representative. You can even discover weaknesses in your process, such as ordering too much of a low-selling product.

You’ll remove the possibility of incorrect figures, creating more accuracy in reports. Although errors can still occur as information enters the database, it’s much less likely with data automation than someone who spends hours working with figures and inputting them all at one time. Since much of the information is automated based on inventory stocks and customers’ online orders, it becomes even more automated and reliable.

Control Inventory & Logistics

In a survey of 1,100 small companies in the United States, researchers found a mere 43% of small businesses either don’t track their inventory or use a manual system to do so.

This lack of organization often results in them running out of popular items or having an overstock of things that don’t move. The outcome is unhappy customers and cash flow issues. However, automation can better track what has sold, when you need to order and what the fastest shipping methods are for each order.

Automation data allows your employees to move through the process more smoothly as different players complete each task. For example, the customer goes online and makes a purchase. The computer searches through inventory and chooses the warehouse with the most stock of the item and initiates order fulfillment. That warehouse receives a request and a list of the goods in the order prints.

A picker goes and grabs the items and places them in the box, scanning each item so the computer can update the inventory. The computer tracks every point of the process so workers can focus on quality control and customer service rather than double-checking figures.

Manage Customer Relationships

Customer relationship management (CRM) software allows you to touch base with customers to solve issues and pinpoint trends. For example, you may have a shopper that typically orders every three months but has gone five months without a purchase. Rather than relying on your memory or sales staff to know when to reach you, you can automate these tasks.

Use the date from your system to automatically generate reminder emails, remind sales staff to make a phone call or even set up subscription-based ordering for those buyers who want it.

Benefits of Data Automation

Data science speeds up analytics and frees up your human team for more creative endeavors. Big data is no longer overwhelming, as computers sort through it in a few minutes and generate reports that would take a person days to create.

As machine learning advances and AI becomes even more popular, the price of software will drop, allowing smaller businesses to automate at least some of their processes.

Kayla Matthews Kayla Matthews is a data journalist and technology writer. Her work has previously been featured on InsideBIGDATA, WIRED, Digital Trends and The Week. To read more from Kayla, please visit her blog,

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