Why Manual Tasks Are Still Important in the Digital Age

Why Manual Tasks Are Still Important in the Digital Age featured image

In today’s digital age, it may seem like everything is automated and done with the click of a button. However, many manual tasks are still essential for businesses and individuals. In fact, the Soldier’s Manual of Common Tasks, a manual used by the United States Army, highlights the importance of manual tasks in various situations. 

This article will explore why manual tasks are still crucial in the digital age, how they can benefit businesses and individuals, and why striking the right balance between manual and automated tasks will work wonders.

Building Skills and Knowledge

One of the main reasons why manual tasks are still necessary is because they help build skills and knowledge. In the Soldier’s Manual of Common Tasks, soldiers are trained in various manual tasks such as map reading, first aid, and weapon maintenance. 

These tasks help them in their military duties and equip them with valuable skills that can be applied in other areas of their lives. Similarly, in the business world, manual tasks such as data entry, filing, and inventory management help employees develop essential skills such as attention to detail, organization, and time management.

Ensuring Accuracy and Quality

While technology has made many tasks faster and more efficient, it is not always 100% accurate. Manual tasks, on the other hand, require human input and oversight, which can help catch errors and ensure quality. 

For example, in data entry, a person can double-check the information entered to ensure it is correct. Manual quality control checks in manufacturing can catch defects that automated systems may have missed. This attention to detail and quality control can save businesses time and money in the long run.

Maintaining Human Connection

In a world where communication is often done through screens and devices, manual tasks can help maintain human connection. For example, writing a handwritten note or letter can have a more personal and meaningful impact than sending an email. 

In customer service, speaking to a live person on the phone can provide a better experience than interacting with a chatbot. Manual tasks also require face-to-face interaction, which can help build relationships and foster a sense of community.

For this reason, Sales Prophet has added a rules engine that will automatically create a task to send a direct mail postcard or letter to a prospect who exhibits specific behavior like opening an email several times, clicking on links multiple times, and responding to an email. While you could automate this entire process, including the message itself, we dont recommend doing so.

Instead, we recommend writing personal notes or messages based on the prospect’s demographic or firmographic profile. You should do a little research on the prospect and mention that in our message. This proves general interest in wanting to work with that particular prospect. Limitations in today’s automation tools and large language models can’t replace this personalized process. At least not yet. 

The Role of Automation in Business Growth

While manual tasks offer undeniable benefits, businesses cannot ignore the potential for growth and efficiency that automation brings. Automation has the ability to streamline repetitive tasks, reduce human error, and optimize processes. By automating routine processes like data analysis, reporting, and customer service, businesses can free up valuable time and resources that can be allocated to more strategic initiatives.

Automation also enables businesses to scale their operations and handle larger volumes of work. With automated systems, businesses can handle increased customer demands, expand their reach, and improve overall productivity. This scalability is crucial for companies aiming to grow and thrive in a competitive market.

Furthermore, automation allows businesses to adapt to changing technology trends and market dynamics. As new tools and technologies emerge, businesses can integrate them into their automated systems, staying ahead of the curve and embracing innovation while improving process efficiency.

Leading sales automation providers such as Sales Prophet is a game-changer in automating critical sales processes. They offer agile automation capabilities for businesses, including automated prospecting, lead nurturing, calendar scheduling, in-depth sales performance reporting, and sales pipeline customization. This agility is essential in today’s fast-paced business landscape.

Striking the Right Balance

Finding the right balance between manual tasks and automation is a strategic decision that should be tailored to each business’s unique needs and goals. While some tasks can be fully automated to improve efficiency and reduce costs, others may require a human touch to ensure personalization and customer satisfaction.

This is especially true when it comes to account-based sales and marketing. Account-based marketing has been all the rage for several years now. However, we should point out that automating the sales process regarding strategic account-based targets is not recommended. 

Usually, if a company flags another company as part of its account-based sales and marketing efforts, it’s for good reason. In most cases, those target accounts match existing customers with one or more attributes like short time to close rate, high lifetime value, high net profit, easy to support, or strategic in nature.  

You would want to avoid dropping key prospects at those accounts into an automated program. These accounts require a more personalized approach. Sales Prophet developed a patent-pending account-based email program that allows you to send relevant messages to multiple prospects that make up the buying committee in the same email. The application makes it easy to identify key stakeholders at these top accounts and with a click of the mouse, copy those ideal prospects in the same email message. This proves that you did your sales homework to the prospect by copying key stakeholders in the same email that would make up the buying committee. 

Below is an email example of a moving company targeting a large enterprise-sized business. The email is addressed to the most senior person i.e., the Chief Human Resource Officer, and copied Sally Seashore, VP of Talent Acquisition, and Robert Bay, Director of Procurement. 

Screenshot of an email example of a moving company targeting a large enterprise-sized business.

We used to assemble these messages manually by cutting and pasting each person’s first name, last name, and email address. This took a considerable amount of time to craft each message. Not to mention we had to pick which contacts to include in the message from an Excel file.

Sales Prophet allows us to search all of the contacts in the database and simply click on the names of the ideal prospects, automatically inserting them into the email saving our salespeople hours and hours of time. Now a salesperson can easily prospect up to 500 top accounts while fully automated campaigns target smaller opportunities.

When you consider the fact that most salespeople only spend 28% of their data communicating with prospects, It is crucial for businesses to regularly evaluate their processes and identify areas where automation can be implemented effectively. Businesses can empower employees to focus on more creative and strategic endeavors by automating repetitive and time-consuming tasks. This not only boosts productivity but also enhances employee satisfaction and engagement.

Furthermore, businesses should foster a culture that embraces both manual tasks and automation. Employees should be encouraged to develop their skills and adapt to new technologies continuously. This dual approach allows businesses to leverage the strengths of both manual and automated processes, resulting in improved overall performance.

In conclusion, manual tasks and automation play significant roles in business including sales operations. While manual tasks provide valuable skills, ensure accuracy, and maintain human connection, automation offers efficiency, scalability, and adaptability. By finding the right balance between the two, businesses can achieve sustainable growth, enhance productivity, and stay ahead in the digital age.

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