The path to automation at scale—overcoming automation’s 1% problem

The path to automation at scale

Similar to the proliferation of SaaS apps, the number of integration and automation tools have sprung up over the years. 

You have your traditional iPaaS, which can integrate cloud and on-prem apps; RPA tools, that can automate simple tasks; business process management platforms, which can help you map out complex workflows—and so on.

Even when they’re used together, there’s a host of issues that prevent 99% of your processes from being automated successfully. These issues span everything from the difficulty in finding integration and automation-related errors (as you have several tools to comb through) to a lack of accessibility, as most employees don’t have the technical expertise to use all, or even any, of these tools.

Gautham Viswanathan, the co-founder and Head of Products at Workato, spoke to leaders in engineering, sales ops, people analytics, product design, and technology consulting during a session at Automate, the #1 conference on automation. They discussed how Workato neatly addresses these drawbacks from traditional tools and enables enterprise organizations to automate at scale. 

You can read on to learn what they shared during the session!

Related: How to establish an automation center of excellence

A low-code/no-code platform leads to few backlogs and high employee engagement

Sridevi Pasumarthi, the VP of Corporate Engineering at Checkr, Inc. (a platform that provides employee background checks), is a long-time Workato user, also using the platform in her previous roles at Slack and Arlo.

She consistently brings Workato to wherever she works because the platform is low-code/no-code (making it accessible to the team at large) and incredibly powerful. Pasumarthi explained by providing an example from her previous role:

“Slack was going through stages of hyper-growth, and we had quite a few integration backlogs….We had a very small IT team. (Therefore) We wanted to make sure that we bring in a tool that not only enables IT but also business teams. We chose Workato because it gave us that speed, agility, and the necessary power to deliver these solutions (integrations and automations).”

In addition to building powerful integrations and automations quickly and at scale, Pasumarthi highlighted other reasons for getting lines of business involved:

  • It offers them a chance to build more valuable automations for the business, as they likely have a greater understanding of the relevant apps and workflows 
  • It gives them the opportunity to up-level their skill-set
  • It brings them excitement and a renewed sense of possibility in their work

As it turns out, the speakers who work in roles outside of engineering and IT were able to support these very points by sharing their own experiences.

Related: How your organization can automate at scale

Non-technical business users can drum up creative and powerful automations

Jessica Barry, a People Analytics Manager at Confluent, an event streaming platform, admits, that “I’m not a developer, and APIs have always been a little bit of an unknown and intimidating…” but then explains goes on to explain:

“(Workato’s recipes) make it very clear to see the order of operations that align with your business process. So Workato helps me move the needle quickly, and with Workato being able to connect to several systems, there’s no limit to how complex you can make your automations.”

What, exactly, has Barry been able to do with Workato? 

She’s integrated her team’s applicant tracking system (ATS) and human resources information system (HRIS), and she’s used platform chatbots that can communicate between her organization’s business communications platform and the rest of their apps. The result: she’s been able to keep apps in sync, and streamline various processes related to screening resumes, interviewing candidates, and onboarding employees

These automations have led her team to meet key goals—such as providing experiences that delight candidates, new hires, interviewers, and hiring managers, as well as shortening her team’s time-to-hire. 

The session also featured Basile Senesi, the VP of Sales and Operations at Fundbox (a platform that offers credit and payment solutions to small businesses).

He shared that his organization encountered a unique opportunity during the early days of the pandemic when the U.S. Treasury Department launched the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) for SMBs. 

His team knew that the process of building out a new loan application program for PPP had to be extremely fast, as the program was likely to run out of funds within a matter of days. 

This meant that their traditional approach of going through dev simply wasn’t feasible. 

Instead, the RevOps team built a back-end solution using Workato, where it would grab the data from the submitted documents and move them to the right places in order to complete all the steps in the loan processing flow. All the while, this freed up their dev team to focus on the front-end, which accelerated their loan application program’s time to market. 

Senesi highlighted the results of the loan application program:

“It took us about 4 days to get the first version of the product out. We ended up starting the loan application on over 100,000 small businesses, converting that to 15,000 funded loans, and half a billion dollars in total origination money.”

The success of this program underscores Workato’s ability to help their organization follow through on their preferred approach of “iterating rapidly without involving developers.”

Want to catch everything these speakers shared? You can uncover all of their insights by downloading the session’s full recording.

About the author
Jon Gitlin Content Strategist @ Workato
Jon Gitlin is the Managing Editor of The Connector, where you can get the latest news on Workato and uncover tips and frameworks for implementing powerful integrations and automations. In his free time, he loves to run outside, watch soccer ( matches, and explore local restaurants.