The fourth industrial revolution has truely arrived.
What is the Power Platform?
If you have Office 365, you already have access to the Power Platform. The platform includes Power Apps, Power Automate, and Power BI. With these apps, you can create custom apps. Automate workflows, and create data visualisations.
These are low code/no code tools. Offering you unlimited possibilities for creating custom business apps. Without the expense of large-scale development projects.
Advantages of building your own app.
- You design and own the app.
- No third-party software offering features and capabilities you never use. Not to mention integration issues.
- No third-party recurring monthly or yearly software costs.
Microsoft Power Apps for Service Request
Organisations can use the PowerApps platform to develop an interactive application. For example, users submit service requests.
Apps can be built to collect service requests. Such as room maintenance, purchase orders, human resources, and much more.
- Site inspections.
- Stock checks.
- Vehicle inspections.
- Product evaluations.
- Job checklists.
- Track equipment used for a job.
The created apps are platform independent. Can be accessed directly through SharePoint or on the PowerApps mobile application. Power Apps is available for Windows, Android, and iOS.
Microsoft PowerApps for Expense & Purchase Approval
Managing budgets, expenses, and purchase approvals is a tedious job at the best of times. Not to mention report generation.
The process can involve multiple submissions and processes.
Using PowerApps, a user can submit expenses or purposed purchases. For approval with valid proofs.
The manager can approve or reject the request and add comments if required. The requester is updated on the status of the request through notifications. The app can be integrated with Power BI reports and any existing HR system.
AI back office automation.
By using AI you can automate your invoice scanning process. This can save time and money on labour costs. Also reduce the risk of data errors without doubling the staff workload.
One example is double-entry batching bookkeeping. AI can scan the invoice or receipt and extract the values.
Then have a member of staff check.
If the human and AI got the same values, then move the invoice process along.
If there is a discrepancy, then start a manual reconciliation process.
Using Power Automate it's possible to automatically extract data from legacy software. Removing the need for manual copy and pasting.
What is AI Builder?
AI Builder is a feature within the Power Platform that allows users to create custom AI models.
Without the need for specialised coding knowledge. Members of staff can leverage pre-built templates. Then using their own data to train models to perform tasks. Such as
- Image recognition.
- Text classification.
- Form processing.
- Sentiment analysis.
- Predictive maintenance
AI models can be integrated into Power Apps and Power Automate workflows.
Microsoft PowerApps for Employee Onboarding
A growing business is generally constantly struggling with day-to-day things. For example the demands of onboarding new employees. The process is time-consuming and prone to errors. As a business increases in size. It becomes increasingly difficult.
To ensure all new members of staff are successful in their new roles. They must have acess to the information and resources they need.
A noteworthy feature of Microsoft PowerApps. Is its ability to seamlessly integrate with data stored in other Office applications. Like Outlook, tasks, and calendars. Using PowerApps, an employee onboarding app can be built to pull together resources.
Like policy guides, team member contacts, and forms. On to a single platform so that employees have a hassle-free onboarding experience. This also simplifies the role of the HR onboarding for new hires.
- Job application.
- Complying with HR regulations.
- Time sheets (automate the process of tracking employee time).
- Time sheets for third-party. For example Food & Beverage Audits contractor.
- Sick leave.
- Time Off, holiday requests.
- Performance Review and goals.
- Offboarding (a process that completes the end of a professional relationship between an employee and the company they work for).
The recent pandemic illustrated the importance of tracking employee health. Their well-being, grievance handling, and employee collaboration, all can be managed remotely.
HR App Possiblities
1. Recruitment of Candidates
The HR department is familiar with the kind of candidate required to fill a company position. Hence, they are given the task of selecting a qualified person for the job. The HR department understands that recruitment is costly. The right employee can revitalise a company. But a wrong one can upend the company's operations.
2. Payroll Processing
The process of payroll is in itself an activity that the HR department is responsible for. It is concerned with arriving at a net pay after deducting all the taxes. Every business tries to carry out the payroll process in a smooth manner.
3. Policies of the WorkplacE
The HR department. Is responsible for the development and implementation of the policies in the company. Such as discipline policies, and the dress code. The ethics that the employees will have to follow. The duration of sick or paid holidays given to employees, etc.
4. Training and Development
Despite an employee, being a new hire or an existing one. They will require regular skill-building sessions. For career development to be productive and meet their personal and professional goals. It is the responsibility of the HR department to oversee the training needs of employees.
5. Performance Reviews and Promotion of the Employees
One of the roles and responsibilities of the HR department. Is the evaluation of the performance of employees. These can be carried out on a semi-annual or annual basis. Performance review helps the manager know how the employees are doing. Measure their contribution, and set expectations and goals.
Microsoft PowerApps for Inventory Management
The Power Platform is an effective real time inventory and asset management tool. An app can keep track of your inventory and assets. Can also help you automate and or review the process of re-ordering and tracking inventory. Plus generate mangement reports.
There are Microsoft customer case studies. Where organisations have replaced a six-figure a year 3rd party tool with a custom Power App.
For the hospitality industry effective inventory, and checklist management is crucial. Hotels to restaurants, keeping track of inventory. Can be a time-consuming and error-prone task.
But with Microsoft PowerApps. Businesses in the hospitality industry can streamline their inventory management processes. And gain greater control over their inventory.
For example this can help businesses quickly identify shrinkage.
App inventory case example
First, an authorised member of staff uses a desktop Power App to create a Purchase Order (PO). Adding vendors and products from an easy-to-use process. Once the PO is ready to go, they submit it via the app.
The purchase order is automatically turned into a PDF. Then sent directly to the supplier for fulfillment.
When the order arrives warehouse staff use a mobile Power App. To find, and receive the order and add to the companies inventory.
The app uses the built-in barcode scanner to scan serial numbers and asset tags. With the item logged as an in-storeroom inventory item. The item can be distributed to the users department.
Microsoft PowerApps for Sales and Marketing Automation
In the competitive world of hospitality. It's crucial for businesses to have effective sales and marketing strategies in place.
Microsoft PowerApps can help businesses in the hospitality industry. Streamline their sales and marketing efforts and gain a competitive edge.
For example, automate customer contact emails and responses.