Businesses across industries are looking for new ways to improve customer experiences, keep employees happy, boost efficiency, and make the most of their workforces—and automation has become the clear solution.
The companies that came out on top of this year’s Automation Impact Awards proved that automation is the key to resolving persistent industry challenges, like slow application processing times or a lack of standardized industry data.
You can read on to learn how these award-winning companies use automation to reshape their businesses as well as their respective industry.
1. Software integrations are changing how users interact with their tech stacks
The average person uses almost 10 applications per day in their personal life and for work, they often use even more. Enterprises now have an average of 288 applications in their tech stack. Since a small share of these applications are integrated with each other, users spend lots of time manually migrating files and data between systems.
Shutterstock, the world’s leading global creative platform, is fixing this broken user experience by embedding Workato integrations directly into their products. For instance, by integrating with Adobe Creative Cloud, any media that’s downloaded and stored in Shutterstock can automatically appear in the former (this convenience alone saves users an astonishing one month of work per year).
2. Automation is speeding up B2B sales
In the B2B world, where the sales process can be notoriously slow, automation is transformative.
Trimble, an industrial technology company that finds ways to connect the digital and physical worlds, uses Workato to streamline lead management and speed up handoffs between marketing and sales. This automation gives Trimble a clearer picture of the needs of potential customers so the sales team can approach leads at the right time with the right message.
3. Customers get access to financial services faster with automation
People are enthusiastically adopting digital financial services like co-branded credit cards, installment lending, and buy now/pay later—and while that’s great for providers, it also means they need to process even more applications faster than ever. If the provider makes a mistake, it could end in a costly dispute, but, if they wait too long to approve the application, a potential customer might just use one of the many other payment methods at their disposal.
It’s a tough line to walk, but the fintech firm Bread Financial uses automation to bring balance to their application process and to prioritize the needs of both their employees and customers. Using Workato, Bread Financial sales reps now have a better way to enter customer data from the online application form into Salesforce and several other proprietary databases—one that takes just minutes to complete instead of the previous half hour.
AvidXchange, a leading provider of accounts payable automation software and payment solutions for middle market businesses and their suppliers, is also seeing success with Workato. The company uses the Workato platform as a middleware system between their online application form and Salesforce, as well as a way to automate the supplier onboarding process.
The result? Higher platform adoption and a higher applicant conversion rate.
4. Automation helps support a global food supply chain
It’s no secret that global supply chains struggle to adapt to uncertain market conditions. For manufacturers working hard to meet shifting consumer demand, automation is a buoy.
Marel is the world’s largest manufacturer of food processing equipment. Its strength lies in its products, but also in a strong employee network that spans dozens of countries. To keep employees on the same page in unpredictable markets, the company leans on automation.
At Marel, automation is all about ensuring employees have access to clean data. The company’s data team, led by Eric van Gemert, automates the onboarding and offboarding process, as well as intercompany sales, to ensure international data is standardized. The company also automates the synchronization of product data for research and development.
“Every system is connected with good quality data in near real time,” says van Gemert. “It’s just a lot of value for Marel–for every person working with the data.”
5. New healthcare workers can ramp up faster with automation
The pandemic has taken a heavy toll on the healthcare industry, where hospitals and clinics are still struggling with staffing shortages.
Vituity, a leader in acute care management, healthcare, and medical staffing services, uses onboarding automation to ease incoming healthcare workers into new positions. These automations help doctors, nurses, and other professionals move quickly through the paperwork phase of starting a new position, so they can start training on site as quickly as possible.
Previously, Vituity handled the onboarding process—from signing the contract to the actual site startup—manually. The company would manually export a new employment contract from Salesforce into a spreadsheet that its employees would reference as they added data to other systems. Stakeholders typically exchanged hundreds of logistical emails during this process. By using Workato to automate this tedious process, Vituity can skip these unnecessary steps.
The results have been tangible.
“We are seeing somewhere between 20 and 30% improvement in productivity—and productivity just in the onboarding process of a physician or clinician,” says Amith Nair, CIO at Vituity.
6. Automation unifies data in a fractured transportation industry
Information from dealerships, insurance companies, and roadside assistance providers can overwhelm not just transportation companies, but end users like drivers and passengers as well. Customers can get caught relaying messages between these stakeholders, which doesn’t result in the best customer experience or the best eventual outcome for transportation companies.
That’s something LinkedCar, an award-winning automotive industry platform, wants to change. LinkedCar uses Workato to integrate its innovative platform with the systems that traditional providers, like dealerships, already use to help these stakeholders share data with customers.
When LinkedCar started using Workato, Founder Mario Schraepen says customers were blown away by the type of data they had access to and how easy it was to view it all in one place.
“It makes the life of our sales people a lot happier, a lot easier, because it’s not just saying ‘hey we could integrate,’ no, no, we already have an integration,” says Schraepen.
7. The travel industry uses automation to get new drivers on the road faster
As environmental sustainability, staffing shortages, and fuel costs take center stage, the travel industry has never been under as much pressure as it is now to improve inefficient operations.
Gett, a corporate ground transportation company that’s used by a quarter of the Fortune 500 companies, connects customers with local corporate fleet, ride-hailing, taxi, and limo providers. In the past, it took hours or days to onboard a new driver—time the company felt could be better spent elsewhere. Roy Shoval, Salesforce and Integrations Team Leader at Gett, had an idea. His team used Workato to automate the onboarding process, reducing it down to just seconds.
The automation also improves the quality of the company’s driver data and analytics. Gett uses multiple platforms to manage driver information and, when onboarding was manual, the data lacked consistency or sometimes shared financial information with employees unnecessarily.
“Instead of the business trying to understand where the data is, they had it all in one place,” says Shoval. “They could be more focused on helping the drivers, giving them what they need.”
8. Automation helps assemble construction crews for critical projects
In the construction industry, retaining skilled workers has always been a challenge.
It can be especially important for employers to deliver positive employee experiences in a country like Japan, where the construction worker shortage ratio is high.
A painful onboarding or offboarding experience can alienate new employees and harm a company’s reputation with potential recruits. To streamline these sensitive processes and reduce the time spent onboarding and offboarding employees, the Japanese real estate company R.C. Core Co. turned to automation.
Shinichi Miyamoto, the Head of Corporate Planning and IT, and Kengo Matsushima, the Head of Infrastructure, implemented automations to onboard and offboard employees 97% faster. The result is a better employee experience, plus a more efficient process that helps the company save significant time and resources for construction projects.
9. Major retailers reduce overhead expenses with automation
The coordination required to unify global operations is often superhuman, but brands can use automation to humanize the process while saving costs on things like IT maintenance.
Payless Shoesource, an iconic footwear retailer with hundreds of stores on four continents, keeps IT operational costs low by using Workato to power its entire data warehouse—ensuring that their shoes stay affordable.
“Tapping into the full potential of enterprise automation has been a huge win for our team,” says AVP of DevOps Babu Nagappan. “Since beginning our digital transformation with Workato, we’ve reduced IT operational costs by 40% to help keep costs low for customers.”
For Nagappan, though, the benefits of automation have extended beyond cost savings. An automated data warehouse allows almost every department, from finance to merchandising to operations, to more easily comply with regional regulations. For example, Payless is required to use four different payroll systems–and automation is what brings them together.
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10. Automation helps the entertainment industry find and retain top talent
The competition for top talent in the entertainment industry can be fierce—whether that talent is in front of the microphone or behind the scenes. To find and retain top talent, companies need to take care of the details, so their employees have the tools they need for maximum creativity.
SoundCloud, the world’s largest open audio platform, is also a leader in workplace automation.
By using a seamlessly automated onboarding and offboarding process, they’re able to ensure that new employees are set up for success, and that splits with former employees are amicable.
The automation not only reduces the burden on new employees, it also keeps current employees from feeling like they need to hand hold to get new team members up to speed. At SoundCloud, the IT and People teams spend 70% less time onboarding and offboarding employees with the help of Workato, freeing up valuable time for other important projects.
“Our goal was to save employees manual work, remove human error, and save time,” says Corporate IT Leader Rafał Kamiński. “They were all very important to us.”
11. The world’s top colleges manage student and donor data with automation
Most universities have small business development teams and lots of data to manage, and many of these teams struggle to keep up with student and donor data as enrollment grows.
When Tony DiPesa, Business Intelligence and Integration Architect at Wellesley College, encountered that issue, he knew automation was the only way to be small, but mighty. Using Workato, his team was able to rapidly add student data to a number of critical student-facing applications and also integrate gifts and pledges from its donor management system into its financial system—integrations that have been very impactful for the college as a whole.
“We created what I call an integration hub,” says DiPesa.”We’re bringing data together from disparate cloud-based systems into this integration hub where we’re able to combine the data and use that data as a source for a number of our external integrations with our learning management system, student-life oriented systems, tutoring system, and disability system.”
As industries adapt to changing market conditions and customer expectations, creative enterprise automation is putting certain companies at the forefront of their industries.
Kristin Fretz, the Director of RevOps at Bread Financial, has experienced this first hand:
“We’re moving in the right direction in order to stay innovative and competitive in our industry. We’re trying to unblock any manual processes we have today in order to scale all the good work that we’re doing and all the good products that we’re bringing to market.”