Automation is revolutionizing the way companies across industries do work, from the most basic, routine tasks to the most complex processes. Especially when it comes to monotonous tasks, automation can greatly alleviate the burden on human workers. For providers of durable medical equipment (DME), simple automation has great potential to streamline functions and ultimately help these providers become more efficient, deliver better care, and boost their bottom line.
What Is Simple Automation?
Simple automation, or basic automation, uses technology to replicate the work humans would otherwise do to perform straightforward, routine tasks.
When simple automation is applied to a series of connected tasks, it’s often referred to as business process automation (BPA) or robotic process automation (RPA). While there are subtle differences between these types of automation, what they have in common is that they replace manual work with computerized applications.
Automation doesn’t necessarily remove humans from the equation, but it makes their jobs easier. You may be able to fully automate some tasks while others still require human intervention to some extent.
Because of the many benefits automation offers, it’s becoming a critical piece of the puzzle for many companies. And the trend is expected to continue; the robotic process automation market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 23.4 percent throughout 2022-2029.
Examples of Simple Automation at Work for DME Providers
Simple automation has a variety of potential applications for DME providers. Automation can be used for basic functions like data entry, matching, and standardized workflows. These are important aspects of a variety of work processes.
Some companies are using automation to streamline and enhance their approaches to:
- Records and document management: Optical character recognition (OCR) makes it possible for computers to “read” scanned images and digitize the text they contain. This is hugely helpful for DME providers because they work extensively with non-digital mediums, like fax. Automated document indexing is another valuable technology that keeps files easily accessible.
- Inventory management: Automation can also help with inventory management, even across multiple locations. Software can keep track of the number of items in stock based on sales that have taken place and can provide reminders or take other actions automatically when stock gets low.
- Order processing and DME billing: Processing orders for medical equipment often involves extracting data from patient records and facilitating communications with insurance providers, making it more complicated than sales in other industries. Automation can streamline these tasks and help you process orders more accurately and in less time.
- Patient communications/education: You can use automated workflows to make sure every patient receives the information they need when they need it. For example, you might have a program in place to automatically send an email to a patient when they’re about to receive a new piece of medical equipment with an instructional video to walk them through setup.
Benefits of Simple Automation for Medical Equipment Providers
Why should medical equipment providers deploy automation technologies? Three key reasons: Simple automation can help DME suppliers improve their productivity, performance, and profits.
Perhaps the biggest advantage of automation is the way it enhances efficiency. When monotonous tasks are managed by a software system, staff will no longer have to spend hours on those tasks—hours that they could dedicate to more valuable pursuits.
Automation technology isn’t just faster when it comes to basic tasks; it can also be more accurate. Consider data entry, for example. People inevitably make errors from time to time when transcribing data, whereas a sophisticated software solution like Notable Systems can achieve extreme levels of precision. Reducing errors and freeing up staff’s time to focus on areas like strategy or customer service ultimately helps your brand grow and improve, leading to a better customer experience for patients.
There are many ways automation can help you improve your bottom line. For example:
- When automation is applied to order processing and billing, it can accelerate the revenue cycle considerably.
- Fewer errors also mean avoiding costly fixes to correct errors that humans would otherwise make. It can also help you avoid fees associated with noncompliance because you’ll always have the records you need at your fingertips.
- Automation can greatly reduce labor costs, whether in-house or with third-party vendors
Learn more in our e-book, How Intelligent Data Extraction Can Help Cut Labor Costs.
Start Leveraging Automation with Notable Systems
Automation can help medical equipment providers in valuable ways. Notable Systems has seen firsthand how our use of simple automation can make life easier for DME providers, helping them save time and money by improving their data entry and order processing operations. For insight into how we could help your company, take a moment to read about our work with Apria, a leading provider of home medical equipment.
With the right partner, you may be surprised by how easy automation can be. Ready to get started? Schedule a consultation!