The term Workflow is often an unknown in any organisation, big or small. Why is it an unknown? Or should we be asking ourselves, why aren’t organisations challenging this unknown?
What is a workflow and how should it run you may ask? A Workflow is there to optimise Business Processes. Optimisation will inherently increase productivity, while adhering to your organisation’s document control policies and security. The ultimate goal should be to make your organisation efficient and sustainable by transforming traditional printed documents into digital form, using a workflow and document management software.
Well, it may “already be happening in my business” you may say and yes, it probably is, but in many forms, either manually, physically or digitally. The key question to ask is how effective, flexible and agile is your workflow on your everyday business tasks? A true workflow is the execution and automation of business processes where tasks, information or documents are passed from one person to another for action. It is also an engine that should generally run seamlessly in the background of your organisation and utilise software and tools that your organisation is already familiar with. It must have minimal impact and change amongst the people involved with their day-to- day document flows and management.
How do I get started?
Start by looking at your most paper intensive areas of the organisation, perhaps printers heavily over utilised, where consumable costs of paper and toner are high, or even take a visit to the filing room to determine departments producing the most paper. Next, begin to map your document origins, sequence of activities as it moves through the business, its triggers and finally where the document ends up. Bear in mind, documents can be utilised in multiple mediums and depending on its purpose, the document activity may even serve to notify people. So, don’t forget to communicate with the people in your organisation regarding this. In the end, try not to over-engineer or dictate the process, remember not to be too rigid and keep it simple.
In summary, a thorough understanding of your documents, business process, people, technology and environment will be key in deciding the next step to take in finding a suitable workflow solutions partner, who will be able to effectively support your digital transformation goals within your organisation.
Enjoy the journey and ignite people-driven innovation.