Non-Workflow Practices That Make Automated Workflows Better
Defined workflows make sense in every business. Even in creative businesses, there are many tasks that benefit from being turned into repeatable processes. And if those processes can be partially or fully automated, so much the better.
From appointment scheduling to keeping the books to getting deliverables out the door, countless business tasks benefit greatly from being part of logical, consistent workflows, and many of these workflows can help ensure that your team is able to focus more of their energy on core business principles. As a result, work gets done on time, people can use their skills and talents optimally, and customers are more likely to be pleased. Everyone wins!
But what goes on around those workflows is equally important. Workflows implemented without thought to the people carrying them out and the environment in which they’re done can only help so much. Here are some non-workflow best practices that will make your automated workflows perform even better.
Prioritize Tasks Properly
For most businesses, tackling the most complex tasks first makes sense. When this is possible, once you power through the tough tasks, you can get through the rest more easily, relieved of the sense of a big task that needs to be done hanging over you.
Obviously, there are some workflows that must be done in a particular order. After all, your shipping team can’t ship products that have not been pulled and packaged. But where it is possible to prioritize difficult tasks first, you can use deferred gratification to your advantage, making for a more motivated team.
Communicate and Collaborate
Automated workflows don’t happen in a vacuum. While automation is amazing, automation plus strong communication is even more so. Encourage team members to communicate about what’s going on in a particular workflow, and use your workflow software to deliver notifications and alerts so everyone stays in the loop.
Additionally, when workflows must be modified, or when new workflows are necessary, make sure the people who will actually be using the workflows offer their feedback and suggestions. If you use the right workflow software, it will be easy to design workflows with the end-users (rather than programmers) in mind.
Work should be efficient, accurate, and profitable. But work should not be pure drudgery for the sake of a paycheck. Employees who are engaged in their work and who believe their contributions to be valuable are loyal employees, and they’re good for the bottom line too, since employee turnover can be so expensive.
There are countless ways to use incentives with workflows, from recognition of the individuals and teams who meet major milestones (like your one-millionth sale) to in-office team celebrations for accomplishments like finishing up a big project ahead of schedule or under budget.
Automated workflows are accomplished by individuals and teams, and without those individuals and teams, the workflows simply wouldn’t happen. So don’t forget to recognize the human power that is behind your workflows and show that you value your people.
PerfectForms is automated workflow software that doesn’t forget that there are real people powering the work. A flexible, powerful, user-friendly solution to your online form and workflow needs, PerfectForms requires no programming, so workflows can be designed for real-world needs and situations.
From HR tasks to bookkeeping to facilities maintenance, there’s virtually no workflow that can’t be improved through an automated workflow created by you, with the help of PerfectForms. We invite you to browse through some of our many case studies to see how automated workflows plus great teams equals outsized results.
Tags: workflow automation