When you think about modernizing your business, what comes to mind?
Do you feel that you need a mentor/Sherpa/personal Yoda to help guide you? You are not alone. Making sense of the different types of technology (and there’s no shortage of confusing terminology) is daunting, while figuring out what you need can be downright frustrating.
Reimagining and digitizing business processes doesn’t have to be difficult. A partner like Blueprint can provide assistance through the whole journey, beginning with an answer to the all-important question of where to start.
“It starts with nothing more than a conversation about an inefficient process,” says Blueprint Director of Solution Development Eric Vogelpohl. “You’re taking an inefficient, friction-laden manual step in a process and making a computer perform it with the same outcome. That’s all ‘digital’ means.”
There are four questions a company should consider when applying a new technology solution:
- What are your business goals?
- What manual processes are involved in your business today?
- What tools and software are you currently paying for?
- What is the skillset of the engineering and IT staff available to you?
These can be daunting questions, but Blueprint is here to help facilitate and provide you valuable solutions. When you meet with our team, you will leave our first meeting with a concrete plan to achieve your business outcomes and pinpoint bottlenecks. Let’s take a closer look at how you can prepare for these questions:
01. Your Business Goals
You need to find a partner that can meet you where you are at. A good partner will unlock value from your existing assets and recommend technology that suits your organization best. You simply need to know what your end goals are, and your technology partner can focus on the successful implementation. When it comes to identifying your business goals, Blueprint can facilitate the conversation and help develop strategic initiatives. Do you want to increase revenue, reduce operational costs or improve safety outcomes? Whatever your most challenging and impactful goals are, Blueprint works with you to achieve them quickly.
02. Your Manual Processes
When it comes to developing technology solutions, the first step is to identify processes that use paper or large amounts of manual labor, such as a staff that manually collects readings or information from the field. We work with clients to identify inefficiencies within their organization and then turn around necessary steps to execute on a plan to remove these friction points.
A key to an effective digital transformation strategy lies in project selection and perspective. By breaking large-scale projects into small, quick wins and prioritizing them based on immediate business value, ROI can be recognized quickly. This allows the overall systems to be built in phases, allowing them to evolve as new needs arise.
03. Your Current Software
It is best to go into your initial digital transformation discussion with a prepared list of software, services and products you’re currently using. This will help provide a holistic picture of the ancillary costs, which allows you to make better planning and budgeting decisions. Depending on the scenario, we find that many organizations can pay for their digital transformation projects with the savings realized by reducing or eliminating their reliance on costly Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) vendors. Even if that’s not the case, it’s critical to optimize how those disparate solutions work together in order to design processes with maximum efficiency.
04. Your Staff Skillset
Finally, before Blueprint begins building a technology solution for a client, we ensure the technology will be maintained and properly utilized by the client’s internal team. Blueprint works with the engineers or IT on staff at the organization to understand their skill level and bandwidth and educate them along the way.
“We train employees on any solutions we put in place so that everyone is confident that the solution will continue to be a source of value for the organization,” Vogelpohl said.
For small and mid-sized companies, there may be a need for Blueprint to manage the service once it is launched if the organization doesn’t have the needed staff.
So now that we’ve given an overview of the process, what are some potential outcomes? Here is a real-life Blueprint success story:
A water logistics company based in the South Central United States.
Their team had mountains of accounts receivable paperwork to plow through every week. The company used a 3rd party system to manually enter paper field tickets collected from truck drivers after deliveries. The tickets were scanned and emailed to the 3rd party vendor for data entry and our client would then extract the information from the 3rd party system to invoice their customers.
Blueprint created a full system where the tickets get scanned and Azure Cognitive Services began identifying tickets using metadata and matched up heading and content patterns. This replaced a human having to read and enter the data from each ticket.
A new and improved process from paper ticket to billing at a fraction of the time and cost. The new system is entirely in-house and end-to-end, eliminating the need for a 3rd party vendor.
Read more about it here.
Read about some of other client stories here.
From start to finish, a project could be implemented in as short as two weeks. As a technology partner, we act nimbly and strive to deliver value quickly. Blueprint starts with understanding your business first, then we harness tech to make your business work better. Think your company is not ready? We’re here to help you think differently and unlock the power of possibility.