Reduce informational voids between different teams in your organization.
Friday, August 16, 2013
The need to coordinate efforts of several employees or even of several teams sometimes makes us face the problem that organizational issues can take time. It would be great to reduce this time and put it to work. What can be done here? How to manage your employees effectively? This can be done if all your team players have enough information – what they are all currently doing, what they have already completed, or what they are going to do. In a modern world, information is king. It rules the world. And it rules your business.
It’s a common scenario when big company departments do not have enough insight into each other’s work. Is it good? I don’t think so. What if your marketing department does not have enough information from your finance department and they do not know when they can provide funds for their marketing campaigns? What if your support department has no knowledge of your current marketing campaigns and cannot effectively answer your client’ questions?
Often, such information gaps are resolved by using emails or meetings. But if you receive a ton of emails each day, can you effectively manage your processes? Or what if your weekly meeting lasts several hours and during that time you cannot do your actual job? This way, you spend too much time trying to bring more order into what’s going on instead of actually doing something productive.
The most effective solution for managing information flows in your organization can be the use of a collaborative work management system. This kind of system, accessible online from everywhere, from any modern electronic device, allows you to see the current activities of your departments. It allows all your team members to work on a single project simultaneously, but in a convenient way with a comprehensive list of tasks for each employee, so that they can see what they are currently responsible for and how it affects the whole project.
Comindware Tracker is one of the most flexible, easy-to-use and reliable collaborative work management systems. There are several capabilities that ensure informational exchange for more focus on work.
First of all, it is single work data for all departments. It means that once you enter information in Comindware Tracker, it will stay there and can be reused later. No matter who wants to reuse it – once it’s there, it’s there, and it’s shared among all your organizations’ structures. Of course, you can configure access rights and make confidential information visible to selected users or user groups only.
What impact will single data have on the example I have previously quoted – the one about support and marketing departments? With Comindware Tracker, each support employee always has information about current marketing campaigns, about which they receive notification via email, as well as being able to see the details of the campaign in the system. And the marketing department employee can always take a look at the current budget (it can be viewed, for example, as a list of ‘budget objects’ for each month) and be informed about funds accessible for current campaigns. This can be applied to any activity where different departments are involved and where efficient collaboration is required.
Workflow: coordinates your work
With Comindware Tracker Graphical Workflow builder you can design any business process. The work item that needs to be worked on during the processes will be transferred from team to team in a transparent and controllable way, with all the context involved. For example, a marketing department employee can create a ‘Funds request’ in Comindware Tracker and it will be automatically sent to the appropriate financial department employee. Once the funds are allocated, the process is sent back to the marketing department with a single button click again. Moreover, you can easily adopt automated workflows to new requirements – just open the existing workflow in Comindware Workflow Designer and add some steps, transitions or business rules.
Outlook enrichment to achieve more
Comindware Tasks for Outlook is another feature that allows your employees to collaborate more productively, this time without leaving their familiar Microsoft Outlook environment although now powered with workflows behind the scenes and collaborative enrichments. And, of course, they can carry out the most common tasks with Comindware Tasks for Outlook – attach files, make comments, complete tasks and even create new system collaborative tasks directly from Outlook. And after some time, all the changes they made, will be synchronized with Comindware Tracker. With Comindware Tasks for Outlook you can make all necessary actions on your collaborative work even when you are offline – i.e. there’s no Internet connection. In this case, changes will be synchronized just after the connection is restored. So, you can work even when you’re on vacation or on a business trip.
Discussion threads keep context in a single place
Finally, of course, it would be impossible to imagine a collaborative work management system without its main collaborative feature – discussions. Each object, registered in Comindware Tracker (support case, August budget, online marketing campaign, etc.) has a Discussion tab on its form. In this tab you can leave any work related comments about the process, ask questions and share any information you need. Every person, involved in the process, will instantly receive an email notification and will act accordingly with your comment. Using Comindware Tracker discussions for team collaboration is much more effective than using ordinary emails, because your comment will never disappear or get lost in numerous mailboxes.