Of course, we all know that making resolutions is a lot easier than keeping them. Fortunately, we’ve got 5 great ways to help you reach this goal. Here’s how:
Tip 1: Include Everyone in Process Mapping
To ensure a successful workflow, you have to effectively map each process you’re trying to automate in the upfront. To do this, create a process map that identifies each stage of a procedure, as well as any related requirements or difficulties. A workflow must be completely understood before it can be implemented in any automation software.
When mapping out your procedures, it’s essential to include everyone that interacts with the workflow. Even if Shelley in accounting only briefly glances at an approval form in the process, get her in on the mapping. She may have insights or thoughts on the workflow that others might not have.
Tip 2: Start Simple
When implementing workflow automation, it’s tempting to automate the most complex workflows right out of the gate. Instead, it’s better to start with a process that is both high-volume and requires lots of manual work. In other words, go for the simple but menial tasks (like forms or approval processes) as they are prime for initial automation efforts.
For example, start with creating a workflow for time off requests. Starting here offers immediate benefits and allows you to get the hang of the basics before tackling the bigger workflows. In addition, a time off system can easily be expanded to create workflows for more detailed tasks, such as continuous hourly tracking for employees. Starting with a simple system allows you to expand from a solid base with the trial and error knowledge you need to be successful.
Tip 3: Take It Step-by-Step
Implement workflows one step at a time to minimize the risk of a mistake or an oversight. Often, seemingly unrelated workflows affect each other in some way. If you roll out two changes at once, you may find that certain items slip through due to a critical design flaw you hadn’t considered. While implementing workflows one at a time does not ensure you will not experience any errors, it does make troubleshooting a lot easier when you do encounter them.
Tip 4: Test In Advance of Launch
When preparing to implement, make sure to test each automation procedure before rolling it out in order to discover and eliminate any bugs or errors. Additionally, make sure you let the employees who will be using the software test it themselves. (This group will likely be the same that helped you process map at the start.) They will be the most useful in verifying the automation’s effectiveness and functionality. Take their feedback and consider making adjustments before a full-scale roll out.
Tip 5: Train Employees Prior to Rollouts
Before rolling out a new workflow, make sure your employees are effectively trained on the process. If you don’t put the time in to ensure your employees are prepared to participate, you will find yourself in a mess of confusion and shared unhappiness. Proper training will significantly improve the overall implementation process – and prevent a number of headaches for everyone involved.
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: The future is now. Technology is rapidly advancing, and 2018 is your chance to start anew and bring your company to the next level using workflow automation. These tips will help you keep your resolution – and surpass it.