November 18, 2021

AMO Academy Reflections – Business Process Automation

I am now at the end of my journey in the AMO Academy but also at the start of my exciting voyage as an Automation Consultant at AMO Consultancy!

I thought I’d share some thoughts about the past 10 weeks.

Coming from a Political Science and Economics background, I always found myself drawn to programming. I hence decided to switch to Computer Science and completed my Masters at Birkbeck University. At the end of my program, I joined the AMO Academy and started to learn how to build and automate business applications using the Nintex K2 development platform. During this period, I successfully built two applications on my own: Employee Leave Requests Management and Hotel Room Reservations Management applications. On top of that, I have been developing my skills in making mockups (an incredibly useful tool for communicating your ideas with others) and also gave a live demo of my finished products.

I found the training quite insightful and here are my thoughts about using Nintex K2 platform for development and also a few points on what I’ve learned about business process management.

Outlining Nintex K2 from a developer’s point of view

  • Low-code automation platform

The standardization provided by the drag and drop interface reduces the chances of buggy broken code. It is sort of like using a framework library, except with all, not just some, of the boilerplate removed. Massively reduces the problem of poorly written code on collaborative projects

  • Ability to build quite complex GUIs with ease

The current popular language for building interfaces seems to be javascript. But learning enough libraries to be useful is a long journey and involves a lot of hard-to-grasp concepts like async and await. Passing data between processes is also a nightmare. These things are a lot easier to implement in Nintex K2.

Scene transitions – you would be amazed at how difficult it is to implement navigation with traditional GUI design packages. ‘Routing’ between pages is a lot easier and intuitive in the drag-n-drop scenario.

  • Not having to code allows you to focus on building an excellent product. The K2 platform empowers a next-generation of application designers.

At AMO, we leverage both the power of the Nintex K2 platform and custom coding to build bespoke applications for our customers.

Business Process Management

In most mid to large-size companies, internal management procedures may hinder worker productivity. When your report drafts/ invoices/ etc. have to go through multiple tiers of approval, turnaround time is low.

These bureaucratic procedures, while necessary, can become a major drawback for current businesses in the current climate which face increasing demands to be agile, fast, responsive.

Automation can be a useful solution to these problems.

Three reasons to automate your business processes

  • Organise, optimize and streamline paperwork.

A bespoke platform consolidates plenty of paperwork, systems, emails, etc. to streamline departments’ processes. Hence reducing redundant work.

  • Improve data quality.

Quality of data is important for performing good analysis. Many businesses have loads of unstructured messy data stored in emails, excel spreadsheets, random word docs. Digital forms provide structure so that data can be collected clean. This reduces the need for data cleaning. I personally have a lot of love for excel export functionality.

  • Improve visibility of work-in-progress

Mapping out existing processes and having clear workflows helps us think to think of ‘work’ in a concrete manner. This allows us to be able to form and collect observable measures to ‘see’ into work processes. One of the major strengths of a digital system is the ability to timestamp everything to form process-specific measures to inform about performance (on top of existing KPIs)- the ability to identify bottlenecks as clear places for optimization.

next step

What’s next

After being fully trained on the Nintex K2 platform, I am now moving on to learning how to build robots using our other partnering technology, Ui Path. I will now be trained on how to use Ui Path to automate specific work processes using software to emulate human tasks – Robotic Process Automation (RPA).

Further down the line, I will have more knowledge on how AMO has combined Nintex K2 and UiPath technologies to develop automation solutions to improve our clients’ businesses processes.

Reflecting on the last 3 months, I can say that the AMO Academy has given me the opportunity to apply what I have studied to real-life situations. I can’t wait to start creating applications for our customers for them to make the most of automation!

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Cindy Leung