The NHS is facing unprecedented pressures on its services, and as such, there is a need to improve efficiency and reduce costs in order to continue delivering high-quality care to patients. Automating repetitive, manual, time-consuming tasks within back-office functions such as HR, procurement, and finance removes unnecessary delays, whilst simultaneously eliminating human-error and freeing up staff time to complete more value-added activities.

Key Benefits of Intelligent Automation:

Transform Service Delivery

Transforms Service Delivery

Increase Efficiency

Increases Efficiency

Reduce Costs

Reduces Costs

Enhance Candidate Experience

Enhances Candidate Experience

Drive Accuracy

Drives Accuracy

Improve Compliance

Improves Compliance

Faster Time to Hire

Faster Time to Hire

Deliver Upon Strategic Objectives

Deliver Upon Strategic Objectives

Operational Standardisation

Operational Standardisation

Eric Pirozzoli – Associate Director of Workforce, Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust

Eric Pirozzoli – Associate Director of Workforce, Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust

“By automating some of our workforce processes, we’ve been able to improve the efficiency and accuracy of our HR function. Processing standard reference requests, for example, used to take days to complete, whereas now it can be done in a matter of hours without any errors or delays. This has not only reduced the administrative burden on our HR team, but has also enabled us to provide a better experience for our staff and other stakeholders, ensuring they experience a smooth and seamless process. Thanks to the automation solution, we can now focus on more strategic and value-added activities, ultimately leading to better patient outcomes and a more effective and efficient NHS. We are excited for our next automated process to go live soon.”

Streamlining HR Processes and Improving Candidate Experience

HR is an area that NHS organisations commonly target during the initial rollout of an automation programme. Whilst the volume of transactions processed is not always high, automating tasks that enhance candidate experience or drive better recruitment and retention are often high on the agenda.

One of the most time-consuming and manual responsibilities for HR departments in the NHS is managing the end-to-end onboarding process for new hires. This involves collecting and verifying new hire information, undertaking pre-requisite background checks, sending offer letters, creating employee records, and ensuring all documentation is completed accurately; a large proportion of these tasks can often be automated. Other HR processes that can benefit from automation include time and attendance tracking, performance management, and leavers processes.

Furthermore, automating tasks to streamline HR operations can ensure compliance with policies and regulations, whilst also reducing the time to hire, improving staff recruitment and retention, and enabling the team to deliver a personalised onboarding experience for new starters.

Optimising Finance and Procurement Operations

There are a host of administrative processes within finance and procurement functions in the NHS that are good candidates for automation, including purchase order and invoice processing, spend analysis, supplier onboarding, and contract management. These processes typically involve a large amount of manual data entry, document processing, and approval workflows that are often time-consuming and error prone.

Several NHS trusts are leveraging the potential of automation to improve visibility and gain greater control over spend. Some organisations are using automation to help automatically match purchase orders with invoices, and flag any discrepancies or errors for review, for example, whilst others are using it to ensure that payments are accurate and processed on time.

Similarly, automation can streamline procurement operations by reducing the administrative burden involved in supplier onboarding and contract management. This allows procurement staff to focus on more strategic activities such as supplier relationship management and value analysis.

Ben Wall – Senior Associate, e18 Innovation

Ben Wall – Senior Associate, e18 Innovation

“Automating finance processes in the NHS is an essential step towards achieving operational efficiency. By implementing automation technology, the NHS can streamline financial workflows, reduce manual errors, and increase processing speed. This not only results in cost savings, but also provides real-time financial data and reporting, enabling more informed decision-making. Automating finance processes in the NHS is a key component of digital transformation and can support the NHS to achieve its goals of delivering high-quality patient care whilst also managing costs effectively.”

Use Cases:

Recruitment and Onboarding

Recruitment and Onboarding

Workforce Management

Workforce Management

Leavers Processes

Leavers Processes

Purchase Order and Invoice Management

Purchase Order and Invoice Management

Payment Processing and Collections

Payment Processing and Collections

Expense Management and Financial Reporting

Expense Management and Financial Reporting

Supplier Onboarding

Supplier Onboarding

Contract Management

Contract Management

Audit Preparation and Compliance Reporting

Audit Preparation and Compliance Reporting

FAQ

Automation in the NHS refers to the use of technology and software to perform repetitive, time-consuming tasks and processes in the back-office, such as data entry, claims processing, and appointment scheduling, without human intervention.

Automation can enhance efficiency, reduce errors, and save time and resources. It allows staff to focus on more complex and value-added tasks, ultimately improving the overall quality of administrative services.

Many functions can be automated, including appointment booking, billing and invoicing, payroll processing, inventory management, and document management, among others.

Automation reduces the risk of human error in data entry and processing, leading to more accurate patient records, financial data, and operational information.

While there is an initial investment in automation technology, the long-term cost savings, improved productivity and speed of processing, alongside reduced errors make this a cost-effective and added-value solution across the NHS.

Yes. Automation solutions are designed with robust security measures to protect all data and ensure compliance with applicable data protection regulations.

e18 provides the resources needed to help NHS staff adapt to automation tools. This ensures NHS Trusts and their staff can use the technology effectively and confidently.

Yes, automation can be scaled to suit the needs of smaller NHS facilities. Smaller trusts can start with basic automation at a low cost-of-entry and expand as needed over time.

Yes, e18 has partnered with many NHS Trusts and implemented IA solutions, improving efficiency, accuracy, and the overall quality of healthcare related administrative processes.

Detailed success stories can be found here.