Human Error: Why a Little Mistake Has Big Business Impact

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line graph the consequence of human error

Everyone makes mistakes at work. Whether it’s forwarding an email to the wrong person, entering the wrong order number, or shipping the wrong product, human errors happen. However, these common errors could disrupt business operations or the loss of highly valuable business data. For retail businesses, a single mistake could result in a significant loss of productivity and profit.

The term “human error” refers to the distinctive unintended mistakes people make by performing an action that does not conform to the already established practices, guidelines, or code of conduct in a business organization.  While it’s impossible to eliminate human error, most of these errors are avoidable with the right risk management policies and systems in place, such as the automation of business process management by using ERP.

common human errors in the workplace

Understanding the different types of human errors makes it easier to take proactive steps in resolving the underlying cause. This article will examine some common human errors in the workplace and how an ERP system can automate tasks to curb common mistakes.

Human Errors Regularly Found in the Workplace

Most human errors fall into four categories: knowledge-based mistakes, lapses in memory, rule-based error, and slips. 

Knowledge-Based Mistakes

The knowledge-based human error is a common mistake when there are no set company rules for addressing problems. When an inexperienced employee doesn’t have the answers to a problem and is unable to communicate with someone more senior, they may make a decision on their limited knowledge and resources. 

lapses in memory, painter makes a big mistake

Lapses in Memory

Memory lapses can frequently happen, especially in busy or stressful work environments. Whether it’s forgetting to perform an important step in ensuring security or forgetting critical individuals in required communications, these lapses can seriously impact operational efficiency and data security. Failing to update records or reports is another example of this type of human error.

Slip Error 

Slip error is a common error that comes from a lack of concentration and fatigue among employees. This mistake occurs when an employee accidentally mixes up sensitive information and documents, or performs the wrong task when trying to keep up with manual input. These mistakes can create a domino effect as other departments rely on the same inaccurate info or data in their work.

working on low energy/battery

Rule-Based Mistakes 

Rule-based human error can take place as a result of a change in a business’s owners. For example, after a merger, some old policies that don’t conform to the company’s current status might still be in place. This leaves employees incorrectly following the previous rules to complete their daily tasks. A different interpretation of the rules may also lead to errors.

Reducing Human Error with Automation 

Many human errors are avoidable by automating most of your business’s repetitive tasks and backup system processes. Through enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems companies can promote smooth and efficient practices throughout their entire operations.

man on laptop using automated processes

ERP systems like NetSuite can be used to host an entire organization’s departmental functions under a single cloud-based platform. By having all your business operations on a single platform visible for every department head to see and audit, you can automate your daily business operations from CRM, sale, and invoicing to logistics. 

Automation reduces the number of manual tasks your employees have to complete, which reduces the risk of human errors. Modern ERP systems are cloud-based and offer automation capabilities, meaning your employees can be less busy, less stressed, less likely to make disastrous errors that go overlooked.

How NetSuite ERP Can Reduce Human Errors

For retail businesses, an ERP system like NetSuite can significantly reduce human errors. Through automated processes, your sales reps can be more proactive and close faster to generate more profit. Typical processes like picking orders, creating packing slips, and generating invoices can be done faster, saving your employees valuable time. Here are some of the key benefits:

retail workers packaging products

Improved Customer Service and Fulfillment

Receiving and fulfilling your customer’s orders accurately and efficiently, either online or at the store, is vital for doing business. NetSuite is an ERP software capable of automatically producing real-time product orders and fulfilled lists. This functionality helps your company reduce human errors, late deliveries, and ultimately improve customer experience with your brand. 

Efficient and more transparent communication

ERP software can also help your business automatically generate leads such as customers’ email, phone numbers, interests, and more from your business’s landing page or ads. All your customers and targeted customer’s information are collected and stored in one place, including product interests, order history, buying behavior, pricing structure, and payment info.

business meeting productivity

Improved Business Productivity and Efficiency

NetSuite can help skyrocket your organization’s productivity by automating the different processes involved in your business’s inventory, logistics, and tracking. Besides reducing the chance of human error, Netsuite provides real-time data and live insights to run a more efficient operation. For example, you can receive automatic notifications about pending transactions, inventory capacity, stock updates, and much more. 

Improved Accounts Integration and Reporting

Besides streamlining your entire business processes to reduce human errors, NetSuite can also be integrated with your business’s accounting software. Rather than rely on human-generated spreadsheets that can contain mistakes, you can use automatically generated datasheets and analytics instead.  ERP software like NetSuite gives you the accurate data you need automatically, either weekly, monthly, quarterly, or yearly, to enable you to see the big picture.

How We Can Help:

Even with an award-winning ERP software like NetSuite, you still need a knowledgeable team to implement it. That’s where we come in. As the 2020 Oracle NetSuite Partner of the Year, Kodella has decades of collective experience and expertise. We know what it takes to deliver a complete, end-to-end ERP solution tailored to the needs of modern retailers. Contact our team now!

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