Whether you are running ads for an agency, managing the books at an accounting firm, or building the infrastructure for a startup, learning automation is becoming a key necessity.
While there is a lot of automation content out there, finding automation learning resources is not always easy.
To make things easier for you, we organized the resources into four categories. These are:
- Automation books
- Automation courses
- Online communities
- Automation thought leaders
Since it’s not easy to know where to start learning automation, we have gathered an extensive collection of materials to help you sort out your learning path.
This article will be focused on providing beginners with useful resources to learn about automation.
In other words, you shouldn’t be afraid to look into these if you are not a developer. If you want to learn automation from the ground up, this article is for you.
Now, let’s take a look at some of the most relevant resources out there.
Blogs are the easiest and most accessible way to dip your toes into the topic of automation. Here’s our selection of blogs you can bookmark for whenever you get the itch of learning about automation.
1. The Integromat Blog
The go-to blog for workflow automation. From in-depth societal questions to actionable tips and customer stories, we work hard at making our blog a must-follow for anyone interested in automation.
Where to find it: Integromat Blog
2. New at McKinsey blog
The global management consulting company has access to valuable data, and regularly shares insightful content on the topic of technology, automation, and the future of work.
Where to find it: New at McKinsey
From predictions to use cases, Forrester Research provides extensive content on the topic of RPA. The company’s experience in serving global companies enables them to offer a comprehensive view of the automation industry.
Where to find it: Forrester
4. The HubSpot Blog
With a strong focus on inbound marketing and content, the HubSpot team has been publishing high-quality content for years on the company blog.
Automation is a topic that is regularly addressed, accompanied by research, stats, and data.
Where to find it: HubSpot Blog
Automation thought leaders
Like any other field, automation has its own crop of thought leaders. These range from casual, niche-oriented professionals to industry titans working on advanced programs that are shaping the present and future of automation.
If you want to stay updated on industry trends, follow them on social media.
1. Layla Pomper
Layla is the owner of ProcessDriven, a ClickUp consulting company.
She shares weekly ClickUp tutorials on Youtube, along with process documentation hacks and automation tricks.
Her content is a great fit for smaller teams looking to automate some of their workload.
2. Max van Collenburg
Max van Collenburg is a marketing automation professional. Every Thursday, he publishes videos about growing an online business using automation.
From Integromat to ActiveCampaign and ManyChat tutorials, his channel is very helpful for non-technical marketers and founders.
3. Nile Frater
Nile is the managing director behind nocode.tech, a platform helping non-technical founders build software without coding. He regularly shares content and insights about the no-code space.
4. Minn Kim
Minn is a San Francisco-based investor and writer. Her specialties include remote work, machine intelligence, and workflow automation. She regularly shares thoughts, ideas, and updates about automation on her Twitter page.
5. Demis Hassabis
Demis Hassabis is the CEO and co-founder of the artificial intelligence company DeepMind, (acquired by Google). He serves as an AI advisor to the UK government, and shares insights and ideas on artificial intelligence, machine learning, and technology.
Where to find him: Twitter
6. Andrew Ng
A household name in the artificial intelligence space, Andrew Ng is the co-founder of the educational platform Coursera. He is also an adjunct professor of Computer Science at Stanford and founder of DeepLearning.Ai, a company helping developers learn about AI.
Where to find him: Twitter
No resource list would be complete without a book selection. In here, you will find the latest books on automation, offering interesting takes on how it influences work, human relations, and - of course - the future.
1. “Futureproof: 9 Rules for Humans in the Age of Automation” by Kevin Roose
Kevin Roose is an award-winning technology columnist for The New York Times. In this book, he makes an incredible effort in highlighting how automation can be leveraged to empower humans.
These best practices are a great introduction to automation, especially in terms of strategy and mindset.
Where to find it: Amazon
2. “A World Without Work: Technology, Automation, and How We Should Respond” by Daniel Susskind
This book takes a look at how technology is changing the world and the way automation is impacting work.
Daniel Susskind takes the reader through preconceived notions, making valuable points for anyone interested in implementing automation in their organization.
Where to find it: Amazon
3. “The Glass Cage: Automation and Us” by Nicholas Carr
A former executive editor of the Harvard Business Review, Nicholas Carr has written for The Atlantic, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Wired. In this book, he takes the reader through humankind’s relationship with machines, from textile mills to the advanced technologies of today. A critical take on automation, “The Glass Cage” a great place to start for anyone interested in the topic.
4. “Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future” by Martin Ford
A thought-provoking book that explores the potential effects of automation and its consequences on the job market and employment.
Less optimistic than other materials in this list, this is a useful read to balance out the discourse around automation and challenge your opinion on the topic.
Where to find it: Amazon
5. “Automation and Utopia: Human Flourishing in a World without Work”, by John Danager
In this book, the author explores the future of automation in its most optimistic form: A world where the advent of automation transforms the human experience into a more purposeful one.
Courses are ideal for those who prefer a hands-on approach to automation. If you belong to the “learn by doing” tribe, please refer to our curated list of courses.
1. Integromat Academy
The Integromat Academy is a great place to start for non-technical professionals interested in automation.
In it, you will find tutorials, guides, and videos covering everything from webhooks to filters and cycles. The courses will help you understand how Integromat works, and you will be able to create your first scenarios right away.
Where to find it: Integromat Academy
2. Robotic Process Automation - RPA Overview by Bryan Lamb
In this introductory course entrepreneur Bryan Lamb provides an overview of RPA and its benefits. While it doesn’t get into the nitty-gritty of how to implement automation, it’s a good starting point to figure out whether it could be a good fit for your organization.
Where to find it: Udemy
3. Robotic process and intelligent automation for finance
Offered by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), this course is specifically designed for finance professionals. It tackles the topic of automation and how it can empower and transform finance processes.
Where to find it: edX
4. The Future of Work: Preparing for Disruption
This massive open online course (MOOC) explores the 2019 World Development Report (WDR) and how AI, automation, and other technologies are changing the world.
While high-level, it stands out as a great first step into the global impact of automation.
Where to find it: edX
In this section you will find a shortened list of the resources we provided in a previous article covering automation communities. If you are curious about the whole list, don’t hesitate to give it a read!
Reddit is one of the most popular social media sites, with subreddits covering everything from hobbies to career advice. The following communities (aka “subreddits”) are great to learn about automation, ask questions and stay updated with the latest trends:
2. Facebook Groups
Facebook groups are alive and kicking, with the group feature inviting professionals to engage in conversations on the platform. The groups below are focused on automation, and represent a good starting point for your learning journey:
- Automation Nation - Marketing Automation Simplified
- Automation and Lead Generation Masterminds
- Home Automation
- Robotic Process Automation (RPA)
Quora is a question-and-answer website covering just about any topic you can think of. Unlike more specialized communities like StackOverflow, Quora is mostly beginner-friendly. The topics worth following include:
4. No-code communities
No-code gives non-technical people the ability to create and achieve goals that were previously unattainable to them.
This welcoming spirit is found in no-code communities as well, with founders and creators sharing their knowledge and empowering each other.
For those who are starting out with tools like Integromat, these communities are definitely an asset worth checking out:
5. Product-affiliated communities
Unlike the previous one, these communities are part of the ecosystem of several automation companies. As a result, the content is more geared towards their specific users.
In any case, product communities are a useful source of information about automation. The most active ones are:
- Integromat Community
- IBM Business Automation community
- Airtable community
- Bubble community
- SAP Intelligent Robotic Process Automation
Final thoughts: Automation best practices, and rules to remember
Congratulations, you made it through the entire list!
Make sure to bookmark this article, as a lot of the resources above will come in handy in your learning journey.
As you learn and start implementing your first automation, make sure to remember the golden rules of automation:
- Plan ahead: Map out your internal processes to identify automation potential
- Start small: Try to automate a few easy processes and build up from there
- Work as a team: Involve your entire organization for maximum impact
- Pick and choose: Don’t try to automate everything and anything
- Maintain: Automation is not something you implement and forget about
- Put human first: Leverage automation to focus back on human, creative tasks
Now, let the learning begin.
This article has been updated with new information on June 1, 2021.