a woman holding a tablet in a manufacturing plant

Using the Power Platform to help Irish organisations modernise business processes

Niall Fitzmaurice

Niall Fitzmaurice

Business Group Lead, Business Applications at Microsoft

Read Time, 6 min.

Using the Power Platform to help Irish organisations modernise business processes

 

No two organisations are alike, and neither are the solutions needed to achieve meaningful business results. The one common challenge for every organisation, however, is the need to manage costs and drive efficiencies.

 

One way that businesses can do this is by using technology to cut down on manual processes. This serves a dual-purpose – it can help reduce business overheads while enabling that organisation to better manage its data, which can then be used to inform business decision-makers and help them drive the right outcomes.

 

Microsoft’s Power Platform can help you achieve this by providing your team with a quick and easy way to build and launch business applications using pre-built templates. These apps can help modernise your business by enabling you to better manage your data, which can reveal insights that could prove invaluable to solving challenges unique to your business.

 

Think of applications built using the Power Platform as formulas for success. Each business application is a building block that helps increase the agility of your organisation by modernising processes and providing simple solutions to tough challenges.

 

An added benefit is that as you add new Power Apps into the mix, you get a more holistic view of the business, from marketing to sales to back-office operations.

 

Using the Power Platform to build simple low-code business applications is a hugely cost-effective way to drive businesses efficiencies. For example, a simple app can help cut down on the paper trail for hundreds of different paper-based data collection tasks. These manual tasks can use a lot of valuable resource hours and the data collection process is prone to human error.

 

Below are some standout examples of Irish organisations using the Microsoft Power Platform and Power Apps to help drive positive business change.

 

Helping distribute crucial Government funding to SMEs during the pandemic

 

The pandemic arrived with little time to prepare. Both national and local government bodies had to quickly react and make difficult decisions at speed to try and limit the impact of the virus.

 

To help SMEs with the costs associated with re-opening and re-employing workers following COVID-19 closures, the Government introduced a new €250 million Restart Grant, with Local Authorities responsible for managing, processing, and paying the grant to qualified and eligible companies in their catchment area.

 

To do this, Dublin City Council engaged Microsoft partner TEKenable to build a public-facing application portal to allow qualifying SMEs to submit their Re-start Grant application and provide a back-office application that would store the data securely and allow for the efficient, timely and secure processing of applications.

 

A system of this scale and size could have taken up to 3-6 months to scope out, design, develop, test and deploy, but using the Power Platform to build it meant that it went live in under a week.

 

Dublin City Council now has an application process that is mobile friendly and accessible by staff who continue to work remotely. This is a great example of the benefits of using a low code solution such as the Power Platform, as it enables organisations to build new systems at speed, with a relatively low cost of delivery.

 

Improving critical functions within the national tourism development authority in Ireland

 

Failte Ireland now uses Microsoft’s Power Apps to optimise day to day operations.Having moved to the cloud, Failte Ireland, working with Microsoft Partner Codec, identified that its legacy solutions based on older platforms could now be re-designed and optimised to make the most out of the range of applications available in Office 365.

 

With the impact of Covid-19, the need to rapidly to migrate internal, paper-based processes into Power Apps, starting with the Human Resources department was a priority.

 

More broadly, Failte Ireland also wanted to establish a process to design, prototype, refine and release solutions quickly to address ongoing organisational requirements. Power Apps offered Failte Ireland an unparalleled agility around design, development and release and so was a natural choice as the platform for digital innovation across the business.

 

Thanks to the flexibility of Power Apps, coupled with Codec’s expertise, Failte Ireland can rapidly prototype, release and optimise mobile and desktop apps. Using, Power Apps improved upon existing paper-based processes and delivered both an auditable and streamlined user experience that was common across all  the solutions. For Human Resources, it enabled a rapid roll out of a digital sign-off process which allowed Human Resources to continue to quickly process and manage applications for a range of services ranging from maternity to parental leave.

 

To top this off the time saved in delivering solutions using the low to no code platform that is Power Apps has been key in helping the Failte Ireland quickly adapt to change.

 

Improving health and safety in the manufacturing sector

 

Maintaining health and safety standards in the manufacturing sector creates a high volume of strict processes and protocols that must be adhered to. As an organisation’s operations expand, the volume of paperwork required to track these health and safety processes also increases.

 

Until recently, Mergon International – a technical moulding company providing components, assemblies and technical services to leaders in the automotive, industrial and healthcare sectors – used handwritten cards to log health and safety observations and report any issues or incidents. All these observations would then be collated and input manually into a computer system – a highly time consuming and repetitive process.

 

Using the Power Platform, an employee with no coding experience created a simple but highly effective app that could be used by employees to track health and safety observations quickly and efficiently.

 

By simplifying its approach to health and safety, Mergon now has a consistent reporting process in place that ensures an accurate audit trail. From the data collected, it can now easily derive learnings and insights that can help inform the introduction of additional protocols that help keep employees safe.

 

What’s your formula for success?

 

These three examples offer a peek at what’s possible when you combine Power Platform applications, with other Microsoft solutions and services. Each element has a compounding effect on your business outcomes, bringing clarity and direction to your business while driving business efficiencies and reducing costs.

 

Learn more about how organisations are using the Power Platform by visiting our website.  You can browse more winning formulas in our gallery of customer stories or contact our team to learn how Power Apps can help your business.

 

Niall Fitzmaurice

 

Dynamics Business Group Lead

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