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Complete Basics of Workflow Automation

Leaders and founders of companies often wander through many ways to improve all the different processes that require to be done for achieving a same goal between team members. They indeed understand the importance of ensuring communication and efficiency between departments or groups within a bigger structure. This search for intercommunication responds at a vital problematic which appears when division and individuality appears in the different areas of a company. Working independently of other departments could be disastrous, as members only think about solving particular matters than to have a complete understanding about their place in the workflow. Acknowledging the importance of management software for automating the workflow process offers an incredible opportunity for team members to help visualize the impact and role of their task-solving activities, how this can affect other areas of business and the main objective of each company.


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What is Workflow Automation?

The term “workflow” is used to describe the organization and structuring of methods, patterns and activities from one member of a group to another, or from one to step to another with the only purpose of striving for the success of the task. The definition of workflow automation is to structure a duty in order to fulfill it and consequently achieve goals. For individuals, workflow represents settling steps in order to get to successful results. For small and big groups, workflow is understood as assigning responsibilities that each member must accomplish for receiving group benefits or completing common objectives that can result in the development of the group well-being. There are a lot of workflow automation examples, and they can widely vary from following a cooking recipe to establishing tasks in an office. Companies that apply workflow management techniques and workflow automation in industries such as sales, marketing, HR and how to use are richly beneficiated because of this type of working style since it involves organization, commitment and discipline for finishing duties.



For workflow to be useful and successful, it requires certain indispensable components. First of all, it is required the data and materials for each step of the process. Second of all, it is necessary an algorithm – a process – that people or a software (in the case of workflow automation) can follow. Finally, there is a result that justifies the effort, time and data used during the process. Acknowledging the importance of these workflow automation  components means taking time for setting rightly each element, because you know that making wrong calculations is the same as having wrong results.

Workflow Automation History

The first time this term was used can be traced back to the 1920’s, but it had been studied before by Frederick Taylor and Henry Gantt – both mechanical engineers and management consultants. The first focus they gave this term was based on manufacturing, but it is obvious it has grown until the point of even being suitable for dynamics of families. After the work of W. Edwards Deming and Joseph M. Juran, a bigger new concept of workflow was being developed, one that started on the 1980’s. The development workflow management has experienced since its theoretical creation has been supported more and more by technology.  For instance, new ways of working were designed when typewriters and photocopiers were created since they meant a complete new way of communication, setting goals, and achieving results. Internet was also a main factor for designing new methods of workflow management.

Workflow Examples and Ideas

There are many examples of processes in which workflow automation can be used to achieve a goal in the most successful way. Finance, human resources and marketing are some of the fields in which a structure based on different steps – some of them which can be performed by a digital tool – can exist. For instance, employee onboarding and offboarding, purchase requests and client intakes can be easily organized so high-quality results can be obtained by efficient performance.

Approval management workflow example Approval management workflow example. Made in Comindware Tracker – give it a try:
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Is in this moment when we get to understand the importance of workflow automation idea. The workflow automation is therefore the use of digital tools that allows to complete automatically repetitive activities. Digitalizing data and creating steps for a software to follow is commonly seen as complicated, but learning how to use workflow automation softwares for boosting team effectiveness and improving performanceis very simple. Getting used to a digital format and putting on it all the right information and steps to follow can take a bit of time, but are effortless tasks that can be quickly learned. Be sure that every iteration of workflow automation improvement will be bringing you even more benefits. Besides, all the visible profits workflow automation softwares bring to users are a common incentive for people to learn every detail for making the best out of them.

Key Benefits of Workflow Automation

The idea of these digital tools is to work with all the data offices have about clients, tasks and their services in order to get done certain continuous activities that can be done without human effort. Its purpose is not to eliminate members who did repetitive tasks, or replacing them for new softwares; it is to get advantage of the talent, experience and knowledge of that people and focus it in new activities that will accelerate the process of completing duties. Workflow automation has brought a lot of benefits for those who have applied it in their daily working lifestyle. One of these benefits is the upgrade of the efficiency of a group as monotonous tasks are done by digital instruments while human forces focus in non-repetitive tasks that need their abilities to get done. This efficiency can be translated into more results in a shorter period of time with a higher quality. Workflow tasks management Workflow tasks management is made easy in workflow automation software by Comindware
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Workflow automation also helps groups of people into coordinating efforts in a better way, so disorganization can be left out of the equation. Finally, workflow automation can guarantee a higher accuracy of results, since there should be no margin of error from the results obtained by the softwares that are used – being the reason of this the meticulousness that requires the input of data to the system.  All these benefits are the reason why more and more entrepreneurs, leaders of groups and small and big companies have applied workflow automation in their work activities.



All these benefits come in handy to every small business or company who wants to stay in the market and strive. More and more competitors are in the actual market –no matter the focus of the company, there is always competitors who could prevails over your business – so an organized working style which can distribute equivalent tasks to functional members of a group can make the difference between a successful company and one that is on the edge of its existence. As previously said, workflow management systems are designed for people who want to be gears, indispensable members of a machine, and who know that without them a gear assembly would not work, leading to the inaction of the machine. It is not only the fact of people who are working in different duties of the same project, but also the inclusion of digital tools – softwares – that reduce manual repetitive and tedious work so people can focus in duties these softwares cannot do.



Therefore, embracing technology and the new and daily advancements it brings to our society is the reason of the success of a company or business. Companies and businesses that bet for traditional working styles are not wrong; but these traditional manners are simply not efficient enough to cover the huge massive audience that surrounds companies. It is here when the dilemma of embracing technology or being overwhelmed by an audience who is always trying to get more and more appears. Those who want to strive know that new methods can always be embraced.

Workflow Automation Trends

The key to success in LOB and workflow efficiency has evolved in time in different trends for the use of the leaders inside companies. There are some tendencies commonly used to enhance effectiveness and the overall boost in every step of the workflow system. One of these tendencies is switching to a low code workflow software such as Comindware Tracker to manage business processes correctly. Low code solutions offer the chance for Line of Business leaders to relieve some pressure and solve problematics along the way. This is a trend which facilitates the process of determining which workflow works the best in a particular situation and makes easier the automatization processes such as cross-product endeavors, allowing managers to better see core insights in the system. Low code workflows ultimately shortens the distance between leaders and department challenges, offering a more instant solution that concludes in efficiency and success.



The impact low code workflows have on a company are very visible. This is a way of management that interconnects line of business leaders to all the different departments and team members, as connection equals efficiency and good results in almost any working scenario. With low code workflows, the responsibility does not rely on a single team member who could endanger the wellbeing of the project. This is a management system that divides the solution making between every member of the group, and this is an approach which greatly guarantees task solving rapidly and simultaneously. Each department can now solve any particular problematic while thinking widely about how this solution is helping others achieve their following task. This expansion of insight is the core for success in companies, as members get to fully invest on their objectives by feeling the importance of their work. Company and business owners apply this method because they understand that the people who work for them are gears that need to be together and function as one, so the gear assembly can work and the machine – the company or business – can deliver the expected results.

9 Features Every Workflow Automation System Should Have

Since workflow consists on several steps that must be followed to complete a process, or responsibilities that must be shared between members of a group to achieve a common goal, the workflow automation software you choose should include the option of representing those steps or responsibilities in graphics. With this option, structuring and organizing the things that must be done become easier since there will be a visible map of what to do and when to do it. No disorganization should exist if graphics can be done as everybody will see the same things you are seeing and a working improvement can be obtained. A workflow automation system should also allow people to work with it in a simple way. Well-designed web forms assures the necessary clarity, straightforwardness, friendly interface, adaptability and easy accessibility that users need for great performance – characteristics digital solutions for workflow automation must count with. Workflow automation softwares are excellent for small and big companies when they are cloud-based. People can access anywhere and at any time to the software, without worrying about losing all their files if devices such as computers malfunction.



Another feature these softwares should include is SLA status indicators – so you and your people can see the progress of the current tasks in which you are all focused. The twenty-first century civilization has gotten used to receive information in an easier and best way via visual messages. The progress of the tasks of your company should be visible by graphics, so the group effort people are making can be measured, appreciated, rewarded, and encouraged. Constant notifications are always necessary. Whether it is on your mobile, or via e-mail, you should always receive notifications when tasks are completed, meetings are coming, and more. You have to be aware of all the things that happen, and notifications are nice reminders of what has been done and what still needs to be finished. But notifications mean nothing if there are no reports being produced. The progress of your business or company must be shown in charts and statistics from time to time. This will allow you to have an organized and accurate overview of the things that people currently are working on. These two features combined will help you to be at control of everything that is happening.



Parallel workflows are an excellent way your software can show the progress that is being done because it breaks with the traditional idea that things are done one step first and then another one. Developers have understood that the majority of the times individuals who want to achieve a common goal while working on a project do some tasks at the same time. Therefore, a parallel workflow will show the progress of several tasks in order to understand the progress of the general project. But even though there are common goals and achievements, not all the information that is being handled is meant to be shared with all the members of your business or company. This is the reason why role-based access control is one of the greatest features your workflow automation system must count with. An excellent software should have the option of changing at any time the ones who have access if it is required. You, as a business or company owner, will chose with whom you want to share information. A final feature your ideal software should have is the ability of integrating your automated workflows with other services to have a better organization of activities.

Why choose  workflow automation software by Comindware?

Between several options for business management, Comindware Tracker stands up from the crowd. This is an incredible next generation software which will ease your tasks and fully make your company interconnected between departments. Of course, this software has an impressively and easy-to-use graphical workflow modelling tool to better visualize the workflow which can use formulas just like Excel; a topnotch web form designer to count with the proper interface with adjustable tabs and fields, and where you can export data to Microsoft Word or Excel; a secured cloud-based technology which allows comfort and assurances in data keeping, SLA status indicators to see the status of the on-going project, a nice visual notifications thumbnail which looks like Outlook for an easier learning on how to use it; the creation of reports, statistics and analysis to measure the progress of current works; the ability to create sequential and parallel workflows; different access levels for each role to share documents with whomever you desire in order to improve the communication between different parties,  and many other services that can be integrated. It is not a surprise why Comindware Tracker is commonly chosen to improve businesses and efficiently solve lack of communication. All its features guarantee the greatest results workers owners of business desire.



This software offers the chance for users a 30-day trial, in which they can experience the level of quality and efficacy it manages to accomplish. For a lot of people, this workflow automation system will mean the gradual improvement of the working environment as tasks do not rely on few people, but in everybody. By having less manual work and more work in which specialists are needed, achieving goals will be a more often activity.

Conclusion

Automation in workflow managing is the correct step towards growth and success. This aspect not only relegates pressuring tasks for line of business leaders but also can distribute it between team members while giving them a sense of importance in solving their particular problematics. Workflow management is a theory that has been living for almost a hundred years, and that has been developing new techniques and new improvements so everybody, from entrepreneurs to company owners, can achieve their goals based on organizing and structuring a process into different steps that can be done by humans and workflow automation solutions. Workflow automation widens the angle of view between leaders and personnel, so they can accomplish quicker and better the desired objective. Every company should embrace the use of digital management software, technology that definitely increases not just the rate of achievement, but also the accuracy and quality of the product by reducing the time and effort dedicated to each activity.



As new technology is being developed, more improvements to the actual workflow management system and theory might be done. All this in order to make the satisfaction of clients, workers and owners the best feeling they can get. It is never too late to change the way your office, business or company works. Workflow automation system integration would mean positive changes, and positive results.

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Elena Haidukova is an Online Marketing Manager at Comindware Inc., and a passionate advocate for empowering executive managers onward to workflow automation and running their businesses effectively.

Posted on:  in Workflow