The AI Series: How EAs Can Use AI to Automate Processes

This article is part of Base’s AI Series, a series dedicated to providing insight into how EAs can utilize technology to do their jobs more effectively.  

Now that you know artificial intelligence is not a threat to your career, the next step is to start utilizing AI in your daily work. The possibilities are endless with AI so the question is, where do you begin? To help you get started, Base has pulled together specific examples of how Executive Assistants can use AI to automate processes and increase productivity. 

Executive Assistants tend to manage a variety of routine tasks on a recurring basis. Repetitive tasks may not take a lot of effort, but are often time consuming and monotonous. The great news is that process automation is the perfect candidate for AI! All you have to do is identify the trigger for the process, and then teach AI the specific action to be taken. 

You may already have technology in place at your company that has the ability to automate processes. If you don’t, you can use tools like Zapier or Zoho to build your own custom automation.  

Inventory Management

Many EAs are in charge of placing orders both big and small. This may take the form of printed marketing materials, office supplies, mailing materials, and more. Regardless of what you’re ordering, you likely have a system in place that keeps track of how much inventory you have on hand so that you can place an order when you’re running low. To help streamline the process, you can use AI to connect your inventory system to your ordering system. When your inventory drops below a specific level, AI can automatically place a reorder without relying on you to take action. 

Monthly Bank Statements and Expense Reports

Do you organize monthly bank statements and categorize spending? Perhaps you create expense reports on behalf of your executive? Through the power of AI, you can create financial reports in minutes. 

New Employee Onboarding

When a new employee starts, there are a whole host of processes that need to be completed and onboarding materials that need to be prepared. You can use the acceptance of an offer letter to trigger AI to complete set-up and prep work automatically. 

Employee Offboarding

Just like onboarding, offboarding employees requires a variety of steps to be completed. A termination notification can trigger AI to remove the employee’s access to all company programs based on the termination date. You can even have AI send an exit survey to the employee prior to his or her last day. 

Contract Creation

Creating contracts can be tedious and repetitive. Attention to detail is crucial, but often information is repeated from contract to contract. You can set up a system, using AI, that will auto-create contracts based on process rules that you have specified. 

Task Creation

Keeping track of the status of certain projects and tasks related to your role can be difficult. You have to know project priority levels, due dates, and associated information. AI can help you to push any tasks that arise through email, Slack, or text message directly to a central repository where you manage your to-do list. You can eliminate the need to manually sift through your daily communications to ensure you have captured key action items. 

To drive the point home, here is a specific example: 

Jessica Presley, an Executive Assistant from Alabama, has taught Zapier to send any action items that she needs to follow up on to her personal email. When she stars a message in Slack, an email with that message shows up in her inbox – grouping that message with other similar work.

These examples are only the tip of the iceberg. A great place to start when first getting started with AI is finding routine processes that you can automate. Even using AI in ways that seem simple can help to simplify your day and relieve stress. 

Written by Bryn Smith

Bryn is the Senior Manager of Brand and Product Marketing at Base, where she is on a mission to build a world-class EA community by connecting them with top-notch thought leaders, invaluable resources, and cutting-edge insights.