Comparison of Workflow Automation vs Workload Automation to understand why these two automation technologies seem similar yet are different:
In the last decade, the word “Automation” has become synonymous with convenience. We have clearly witnessed how it has proven to be a boon in all spheres of business.
Organizations are investing heavily in adding an element of automation to all domains along with tasks to enhance efficiency and optimum utilization of resources.
Automation solutions have been a key factor that contributes to the increased efficiency of organizations by performing tasks of repetitive nature effectively thereby reducing the chances of human errors to a great extent.
Automation has a wide spectrum but the various types of automation have their unique purpose. At times, even the daily tasks can get chaotic for employees if not managed properly. It is imperative to organize these tasks so that completion can be achieved to meet deadlines and employees remain connected.
In this tutorial, we will look at a comparison of Workflow automation & Workload automation and discuss why these two automation technologies seem similar and yet appear confusing to many.
What You Will Learn:
- Comparative Study: Workload Automation Vs Workflow Automation
Comparative Study: Workload Automation Vs Workflow Automation
Future Of Automation
There has been a lot of research around predicting the future of automation. Gartner Inc. releases an annual paper that explains the trends and their impact on business, IT, and technology in the future.
Gartner’s studies have predicted that in the year 2021, the role of IT will gain importance at an organizational level and the credit for this can be given to rapid digital transformation.
=>> Read IT Automation Predictions
Let’s now begin by getting a basic understanding of these two technologies.
What Is Workflow Automation
Workflow Automation is also called Workflow management or Process management. Workflow can be explained as a set of business-related tasks that every employee carries out. These tasks are not limited to a particular team or job role.
The main purpose of workflow automation is to add the element of automation to business processes by means of software that helps to start and maintain a sequence of a chain of tasks that are to be carried out. Workflow is a term that refers to these business processes.
Workflow automation is seen as a major differentiating factor from the older workflow management.
The core purpose of this sequence of steps is to bridge communication gaps and bring an element of swiftness in obtaining approvals. The cycle of obtaining approvals moves from one person to the other.
Recommended reading => Best Workflow Management Software
The process starts when any one person fills a form and it is sent to the next step or next person. The aim here is to make sure that a smooth cycle or sequence of steps is followed and documented thereby allowing businesses to flourish.
It is aimed at doing away with any gaps in the process of communication thereby adding efficiency to all the teams and their tasks.
Also reading =>> Best Workload Management Tools
Let’s understand workflow automation with a help of a few examples. Let’s take the example of an accounts team that creates invoices or bills.
Managing and maintaining accounts is dreadful for people from non-accounting backgrounds and extremely tedious for accountants. Automation has made a lot of traditional accounting processes of repetitive nature simpler.
For instance, in the case of sales made through PayPal, automation can be used to create a link between PayPal and Quick books. This can help to automatically create an invoice in Quick books as soon as a sale takes place.
Another great example of workflow automation is in the field of customer service. These days, customers rate the services based on how quickly their query was answered. This may not be possible at all times but what is possible is “Automation”.
Effective automation can help to bridge any communication gaps and also reduce the time taken for finding resolutions. One way of using automation is to have form entries on the website. Once the form is submitted on the website, there is a basecamp created and it ensures that every form gets a follow-up.
Benefits of Workflow Automation
Workflow automation, as mentioned above is aimed at increasing the efficiency of every day business-related tasks with the help of automation software. It has proven to have provided great benefits.
Some important benefits have been mentioned below:
- Regularizing and Stabilizing employee communication: The process of receiving and responding to requests for approvals or decisions become the same and this helps to shorten the process as well. A great example to explain this is the traditional way of sending emails for requests of the approvals that are sent manually and may go unnoticed and tracing them later can be time-consuming.
- Improved and Effective checks for compliance and revisions: The process of workflow has a framework and rules to adhere to. The process also creates a chain of documents that can be evaluated and also work as documented evidence for audit purposes at a future date.
The other automation technology that we will look at in this tutorial is Workload automation. As mentioned above, workload and workflow automation are often confusing for people, hence for the benefit of our readers, we will also look at a comparison of these two technologies.
Let’s also get a basic understanding of Workload automation.
What Is Workload Automation
Workload automation refers to the usage of software for the purpose of end-to-end task completion. It includes scheduling and execution of tasks using tools and technologies that can be used to bring the element of automation to these tasks.
This also brings along the benefits of being able to control and evaluate these tasks with the use of technologies. The processing and execution of these tasks are done without any intervention from personnel. The main focus of workload automation is on the real-time processing of tasks.
In most situations, workload processes include clients and end-users of products and services of the organization and are therefore external in nature.
The process of workload automation includes the usage of a job scheduler, which is a computer application that is used for managing the implementation of programs in the background. These programs are the ones that have not been attended to.
A user is required to submit the job or workload to a server and the jobs are then executed. Workload automation is an excellent solution for enterprises as it can easily be amalgamated with varied types of external tools.
Let’s take the example of IBM Workload Automation. It has been extremely helpful in providing one consolidated view of all workloads on mainframe or cloud deployments. It allows the creation of dashboards that can also be customized and provides self-service options as well.
Suggested reading =>> Top 10 Workload automation Tools
The tool also offers features to ensure adherence to compliance and security & privacy standards for cloud-based processes.
Another example shown in the below image is Cisco Workload Automation which helps in improving the data center operations:
Background Of Workload Automation
The need for workload automation dates back to 1960 when IT personnel used the mainframe to feed punch cards.
These cards were fed as stacks and were termed “batch”. This is how the terms batch processing and the batch job came into existence. Click here for a detailed overview of Workload automation.
Benefits Of Workload Automation
- Workload automation offers a great benefit of ensuring that the control of managing and execution of tasks is centralized. It is a great solution when a group of tasks has to be executed at a certain time.
- In the case of interdependent tasks, where the completion of one task has a designated time or is dependent on a series of other tasks, workload automation offers the benefit of ensuring completion within the timelines.
- Given the multitude of tasks, there is an ever-growing need for infrastructural facilities. Workload automation streamlines the process of execution of these tasks efficiently, exactly in the correct order. This indeed has proven to reduce the chances of human error.
- Efficiency increases with the help of workload automation. In the process of replacing manual, time-consuming tasks with automated tasks, there is a considerable saving on time and employees can utilize this time for different tasks which are of high value.
- Workload automation also acts as a savior in situations where a hard disk crash can lead to loss of data. Workload automation also proves beneficial in this situation as the power of automation can be used for recovering and protecting from the loss of data.
We are sure that you must be thinking that these two technologies seem very similar. So, as promised, let us now look at the comparison between these technologies so as to understand how these two technologies differ from each other.
Workflow Automation Vs Workload Automation
|Point of comparison||Workflow Automation||Workload Automation|
|Efficiency||Efficiency is low in comparison to workload automation.||Higher efficiency|
|Automation Process Type||Automation is people driven processes.||Automation is for IT and business processes.|
|Organization Specific||Suitable solution for all organizations.||Suitable for any industry but is typically used in mid-sized companies or enterprises.|
|Focus||Focus is on quick responses and solutions for each case.||Depends on resources and structures available. Focus is on utilization of resources.|
|Suitability||It is more suitable for organizations where urgency and nature of events limit the work and everything depends on responding to such events.||It is suitable for organizations where work is limited by infrastructure, resources and capabilities.|
|Balance of Supply and Demand||Organization of demands, where the focus is on the task or work requires workflow automation.||Organization of supply, where the focus is on available resources needs workload automation.|
|Technical Skills||Extensive technical skills are not required.||Some technical skills are usually needed for development, but most modern tools have dedicated interfaces for non-technical users.|
|Scope||Scope of automation is limited to repetitive and rule based tasks.||Scope of automation is wider and spreads across the dynamic enterprise.|
|Integration||Workforce automation cannot lead workload automation.||Workload automation can be used a facilitator for workforce automation.|
|Cost||Aims to reduce labor cost.||Aims to reduce cost of additional resources by ensuing optimum utilization of resources available.|
|Applicability||Mostly used within physical infrastructure.||Used across on-premises, cloud, or hybrid environments.|
As mentioned earlier, these two technologies are quite similar in their aims and objectives of ensuring increased efficiency to deliver high customer satisfaction, yet there are some fundamental differences that have been discussed in the table above.
Given below is a list of frequently asked questions for Workload automation and Workforce automation.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q #1) What is Workload Automation Software?
Answer: It is the software that can be used to schedule and execute business-related tasks of repetitive nature with the aim of automating these tasks.
Q #2) What are Job scheduling tools?
Answer: These are the tools that help IT in the process of automation of initiating and executing tasks on the basis of the date and time schedule or any triggers based on events.
Q #3) What are the benefits of automating a process?
Answer: Automation offers multiple benefits like increased Productivity & Efficiency, Reduced costs, and Time-saving. It adds the element of agility to respond quickly to events and reduces the burden of repetitive tasks.
Q #4) Which companies use automation?
Answer: Automation is used across industries and companies of every size. There are dozens of players in the automation market, and a few key players within each area of automation. Learn more about the best Workload Automation vendors here.
Further Reading => Top Hybrid Cloud Workload Automation Software
In this tutorial, we have discussed two major automation technologies i.e. Workload automation vs Workforce automation. We have also made an attempt to make a point-wise comparison of both these technologies for the benefit of our readers.
Both these technologies are distinct in their features and they come with their own set of advantages and disadvantages.
An enterprise can greatly benefit in a situation where both these technologies are used together, not as competitors but as complementing each other and thereby providing the real benefits of the process of automation.