What is Workflow? Why do businesses need workflows? How to create workflow? Let’s find out with Viindoo.
What is Workflow?
So what is Workflow? To put it simple, workflow is the flow of work. More specifically, a workflow is a standardized work process with projects and tasks that need to be completed according to a specific schedule and quality standard.
Based on Workflow, employees can track and understand their roles and tasks in a project. Repetitive jobs are built into processes that will help optimize work performance, minimize errors, optimize downtime and bottlenecks.
Below is an image of the Customer Support Process - an example of how the highly rated Workflow works today.
Example of a workflow
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Why do businesses need to build Workflow?
Why do businesses need to build this workflow? Join us to find the answer in the section below.
Support more intuitive work management
With the visual diagram method, Workflow will provide businesses with a clear and orderly logical view of the whole working process. Thanks to that, the management of business operations in general as well as the management of tasks in particular will also be optimized.
Besides, the arrangement according to a reasonable and specific diagram will help employees quickly memorize work processes and standards, which will eventually help to limit errors.
Workflow can support business administration.
Eliminate redundant processes and work
For daily operations, Workflow will help businesses control employee activities. To be more specific, businesses will be able to detect and eliminate redundancies and unnecessary steps to improve work performance.
Redundant processes and work will be eliminated when businesses apply Workflow
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Assign responsibility for employees
A workflow which is built correctly and effectively will help employees have a sense of self-discipline and discipline at work. This is because, workflow helps employees clearly define tasks, clarify the coordination process between departments, avoid conflicts or denial of responsibility.
Keep everything in order
When businesses apply Workflow process, employees will easily identify specific jobs and tasks, and carry out that task in an orderly and standard manner. Moreover, Workflow will help employees identify important goals to be achieved and understand the mistakes that should be avoided in the process.
Enterprises can put employees' work in order through Workflow
Reduce operating costs
The application of the Workflow diagram method will help businesses identify effective processes and those that need to be optimized. Thereby, organizations will simplify processes and eliminate existing problems within business, thereby minimizing costs and increasing profits.
Applying Workflow model will help organizations reduce operating costs
When to apply Workflow?
Some suggestions on when businesses should start using Workflow, for example:
- When there are potential customers who refuse to buy.
- The sales team is considering the leads to be of poor quality.
- There is not enough information about potential customers to be able to categorize them according to the specific purpose.
- The company currently has some ideas that don't quite match the survey and research information about potential customers.
- The company has fixed, repetitive jobs but no specific process.
Some examples of when to use workflow
5 effective theories for workflow improvement
Currently, the theories that help improve workflow efficiency in business are based on the massive work by W. Edwards Deming and Joseph M. Juran from the 1980s. These theories are as follows:
- Six Sigma: This is a theory that uses mathematical equations on a statistical basis to determine problems and solutions for process optimization. Six Sigma's goal is to have no more than 3 or 4 defects per 1 million products.
- Total work quality management: This theory is applied in improving product quality and work environment by focusing on effective collaboration and communication between departments and employees in the business.
- Business Process Reengineering: This is a specialized theory that uses algorithms to analyze levels and restructure business processes under changing variables and conditions.
- Lean Systems: This theory typically focuses on eliminating redundant costs to create a “strongly lean” organization that remains competitive, regardless of market instability and changes.
- Theory of Constraints (TOC): This theory finds fragile and weak links in the system to reduce the vulnerability of these links, hence avoiding bad consequences for the process.
Six Sigma DMAIC is one of the outstanding work quality improvement theories
Basic Workflow building process
A Workflow process includes 7 basic steps as follows:
Identify initial data
First, businesses need to understand the work that needs to be done to build the workflow. Some issues need to be determined are:
- Who is responsible for the work?
- Is task management done manually or automatically?
- Who are the decision maker for work approval?
- Are there any difficulties or problems when doing this work?
Besides, enterprises also need to consult the personnel directly involved in the work to find out the problems that need to be improved in the current work.
The correct identification of the initial data will create a complete Workflow
Note what tasks to be done
The next thing the business needs to do is to make a list of the tasks that need to be done in the process.
- If the tasks need to finished in a consecutive order, the workflow will have a simple structure.
- If the work is a series of parallel tasks, the workflow will have a more complex form, the jobs in the workflow will support and affect each other.
A simple workflow usually has only a series of consecutive tasks
Identify who is responsible for each task
After having a clear understanding of the structure and nature of the task, the manager must be responsible for listing the tasks. List all the stakeholders associated with specific responsibilities and what is required in the workflow. Through that, managers will easily identify the specific roles of each person and set up exactly each task for each individual.
Assigning specific tasks to each individual is an important step when creating a Workflow
Create a workflow diagram
After completing the above, you can start sketching the process model work in your organization. If you are not familiar with modeling workflow, businesses can refer to simple workflow setup tools and software. One software we recommend is Viindoo Project with the feature of setting up a work management process in a scientific and efficient way.
Creating a suitable Workflow diagram is a very important step
Check the created Workflow diagram
Checking the Workflow will help you really know if the model is working well in your organization. To test the workflow, you will need to run a test program first. This will help the company determine what steps are necessary and what should be eliminated to ensure effective process improvement.
Checking the Workflow will help you know if this process is really good when put into operation
Guide employees to apply the workflow diagram
Once familiar with the old Workflow, users would not want to change to a new method. Therefore, it is very important to instruct and train employees on the new workflow. This will help each participant better understand his or her role and responsibilities in that model.
A good Workflow will be able to guide personnel to apply workflow diagrams most effectively
Implement new workflows
After testing and training are conducted smoothly, enterprises will be able to put the Workflow process into action. One piece of advice is that businesses should only deploy the process on a small team.
If successful, businesses can roll out the process widely. On the contrary, if the process is not really effective, businesses can re-check, edit and optimize
After the testing and training period, Workflow is ready for implementation.
Viindoo has compiled all the answers on what is Workflow and how to create an effective Workflow. In addition, if businesses need advice on Workflow software or work management solutions, please contact us via hotline 0225 730 9838 for support!