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Is it important to have a workflow management system? Ask yourself these questions:
How much time do you spend in meetings?
What about in your email?
Or just switching tabs in your browser?
You have too many tabs open at the moment, be honest.
Most of us waste a lot of time every day. Atlassian found that the average employee is interrupted 56x per day and spends approximately two hours recovering from these distractions. This is a remarkable amount of time.
Many solutions can help you manage these distractions. However, the majority of inefficiency can be prevented by creating better workflows.
This article explains.
What is Workflow Management?
The Essential Parts of Workflow Management Software
How a Workflow Management System can improve your business process
Examples of Workflow Management
Some thoughts on Workflow Management
What is workflow management?
To answer this question, you need to first understand workflows. A workflow is a method by which you accomplish a repetitive task. It sounds simple, right? It’s all the steps that go into a blog post going from idea to publication, as well as everything involved in onboarding a new member of your team and all the back-and forth involved with building and launching a feature.
Workflows can be complex. Workflows are more dynamic than processes that are linear and have things moving from A to B. They will often involve many back-and-forths, branching paths and many different tools and team members.
This is precisely what workflow management aims to solve. It involves mapping out your workflows and tracking them. Then optimizing them through integration and automation.
Workflow management is cyclical. This means that every time you optimize workflow, you map it and then track it again until the next optimization. This is about continuously striving to improve.
It can be done manually but a new type of workflow management software has emerged.
These aren’t your traditional, linear business process management tools (BPM). This is not a SaaS automation tool such as Zapier. The software is designed to simplify dynamic workflow management.
The essential parts of a workflow management program
Many workflow management tools offer key functionality in a single tool. At Unito, we are working on an end to end solution that covers all the tools that work together.
According to GigaOm a workflow management system must provide four key capabilities
The design is the first. You need to be able map and visualize your custom workflows to optimize them. This is similar to a flowchart. This makes them feel more cohesive and prevents them from feeling isolated in one tool or team. This functionality should be as easy as drag-and-drop.
Integration is next. Integration is the next step. Your workflow system should bridge any gaps between your key work tools, making them interoperable. This will allow information to flow between them easily. It could be used to bridge document management, collaboration tools and resource management tools.
A workflow tool that works well can replace any external automation software you may use.
Identity is third on the list. Who are the people involved with your workflow?
Do they find themselves constantly switching between tools, signing into and out of accounts, and struggling to remember passwords and handles?
A workflow management system (WfMS), which is a good tool for managing your team’s identities across multiple work tools, can help you and your team members to manage one identity.
Finally, there’s analytics. How can you tell if your analytics are working?