Implementing Automation in Your Own Business

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SIG University Certified Intelligent Automation Professional (CIAP) program graduate Josh Millman discusses how automation processes have helped his organization and what they can do for yours.

My name is Josh, and I recently completed the Certified Intelligent Automation Professional (CIAP) course with SIG University. I am also employed with Sourcing Industry Group (SIG) as a Jr. Salesforce Administrator. Thus far, I have only implemented small-scale automation processes, such as automatic emails, but these actions will become more complex in the future.
This course was beneficial and gave me a comprehensive understanding of all that's involved in an automation process from start to finish, including the three phases: initialization, industrialization, and institutionalization. There are many more factors to consider than one would think, and this course was eye-opening. In the future, I have a better idea of every area that needs to be planned, thought out, and tested before implementing an automated process.
One concept from the course that stood out to me is the tactical versus strategic approach to automation. The tactical approach is more focused on increasing efficiency on a process-by-process basis but can lead to a glass ceiling. The strategic approach looks at a situation holistically and expands the horizon of what IPA is capable of. This approach's time period to realize results tends to be longer, but it can produce a constant stream of benefits over time. Up to this point, many of the processes I have worked to implement with my organization have been tactical.
Still, I hope to be involved in creating more strategic processes as we advance. One such idea that comes to mind is finding a way to automate the registration process for our events. Currently, an attendee will register, and then someone from our organization will audit the record to make sure this person is fit to attend the event. My boss and I are in the planning stages of figuring out how to implement an automated process for such activities. This seems more strategic because it will open so many opportunities for IPA within our company and save time previously spent on auditing records. This will enable SIG to increase the scalability of its processes as more and more work can be completed through automation.
Another concept I took away from this course is the idea of the Delivery Lifecycle, which is a tool used for delivering a project, operational, and business requirements. The five phases of the Delivery Lifecycle include: Define, Design, Develop, Test and Deploy. Completing each stage will result in more robust automation while taking on less risk. Over the past few months, my company has implemented new Salesforce features, including a marketing program and a community site. We have been working with a consulting agency that has helped set up these new features within our organization.
I was hired during the middle of this implementation but have been a part of many meetings where the delivery lifecycle was discussed. I've seen firsthand the importance of going through each step during an implementation process. One aspect that especially stood out to me is the "Test" phase. Testing is a critical part of the process because that's where flaws or mistakes should be fixed before deploying into production. SIG has several comprehensive and detailed people regarding UAT, which has made the transition run smoothly for our company. I am confident that almost all bugs/issues will be caught before we launch anything into our production environment.
Overall, the CIAP course was very informative, and I'm glad I spent six weeks learning about intelligent automation. This knowledge will benefit me in my career in the future.

The Certified Intelligent Automation Professional program is a six-week course delivered through SIG University’s unique education platform. Visit our website to learn more about intelligent process automation and enroll for the upcoming semester.


Josh Millman, a Jr. Salesforce Administrator, Sourcing Industry Group

I'm a Certified Salesforce Administrator with a master's degree from Illinois State University, who is currently employed as a Jr. Salesforce Administrator with Sourcing Industry Group (SIG). I am passionate about learning and constantly seek new opportunities to expand my knowledge. I am a husband to my wife, Jennifer, and a father to my children, Lanai (2) and Tyson (almost 1). I enjoy traveling, riding my bicycle, and playing fantasy football in my spare time.