Businesses have been forced to change the way they regularly operate since the beginning of 2020. While some have been quick to implement digital solutions, others have struggled with figuring out how they can stay afloat and keep up with changing trends in this new norm.
At VA-SG, we’ve always advocated digital tools and automated processes to maximise productivity for our clients. This is not something new for us. It was a conscious decision to embark on this path when we started some five years ago as of the writing of this blog.
Since COVID-19 hit the world’s shores, we’ve received an influx of enquiries to help businesses of different sizes better transition their businesses process. While some have requested help with what is usually deemed as menial tasks – for example keying in data from handwritten forms to online spreadsheets, setting up an online bookkeeping system, etc – others have asked us to help them automate their business solutions to enhance productivity. Most of the businesses and clients we know operate from physical offices and moving to remote work has required them to change the way they do things.
We’ve helped wherever we can but there are still many who are struggling. With the Singaporean Circuit Breaker restrictions slowly being lifted in phases, companies are returning to a semblance of normalcy with their operations again.
Once the doors of operation open fully, those who have digitalized but not automated their processes might have a backlog of tasks that they need to address. Having your tools online don’t necessarily mean you are going in the right direction towards productivity and seamlessness. There may be even more changes that you need to integrate post-recovery.
And you may find yourself needing extra assistance to do this.
Here are some ways how a VA can help you transition your business into a post-COVID situation. Our main task is to help you automate your business processes so you can focus on things that matter and improve productivity across all levels.
1 – Clean up the workflow
While you were busy scrambling about trying to bring your processes up to speed with digital tools – for example, order delivering processes or setting up remote meetings through Zoom – you may have left some important tasks hanging to dry. This is where a VA can help. Aside from helping you catch up with a backlog on work, we can also help you untangle the messy knots in your business processes. We identify where the change is needed, digitize the processes that need to go online, create new procedures, and remove anything that is now obsolete. We also help you automate any process – for example using calendar management to book your appointments instead of just relying on email communication to schedule meetings.
2 – Test out the workflow
Some of these new processes you’ve implemented sound good in theory. Yes, you can now do meetings online. Yes, you should now have a better online delivering application. Yes, your website has new digital functions to help ease your business setup. But are these working for you?
At VA-SG, we take pride in testing every workflow process you have. We look at it from a customer’s point of view and from a team member’s point of view as well to see where the gaps in operation are. For instance, if you are running a webinar, you have a Google Form to collect information from interested parties. When the webinar is about to go live, you have to manually email each of the participants. Sounds good on paper? Yes – but this is not an automated process. We can integrate tools like email marketing to help you make this workflow automated and involve fewer human hands so you can focus on creating better and more valuable content for your customers.
Or say you are selling a digital tool – you have integrated all the necessary plug-ins into your website including a method to collect payment. But how are your customers receiving this content? Are you still manually emailing them instead of sending them a push email? Cleaning these processes up early will help you focus on the other important tasks you need to give attention to post-COVID.
3 – Pick out the best tools for your processes
When it comes to digitalization and automating your workflow, there are numerous tools that can make your life easier. As mentioned above, we can help you clean and test your workflows and improve them along the way, but before we handover things back to you, we also help to identify the tools that make the most sense for your business.
Picking out a tool is not as easy as you think. We come across hundreds of email marketing platforms, various social media networks, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Fortunately, with years of experience, we have a handful of go-to tools that we share with our clients who want fast plug-and-play solutions. We don’t affiliate ourselves with any of these tools, especially because our sole purpose is to make your business processes easier and more bearable. Some of the tools we share with our clients include inbox zero, different payroll management platforms, bookkeeping tools like WaveApps, calendar management like Calendly or AcuityScheduling, and even customer relationship management software where relevant.
With COVID-19 slowly making its way out of our lives, we will enter a new wave of the way we work. From remote work to flexible hours, our regular workflows will change. We need to move most of our processes online for ease of access and with more focus on work-life balance, we need to try to automate everything we can while keeping a close eye on our tools and focusing on sales and customer service instead.
Contact us if you need someone to look at your processes and suggest ways to improve it.