In mass communication, one can increasingly come across the term “workflow”, which is applied to almost all aspects of professional life. It is worth considering what this process is and what areas it affects.
Workflow is currently one of the most common ways to manage a team of people. In a word, it can be defined as a view of the organization of work. This means that managers share tasks following the guidelines established in this process. From the employee’s point of view, it looks like he is aware of the obligation to perform, but does not know what application or what part of it matters.
So what does a management process called a workflow look like?
To understand the essence of this method well, it is worth knowing what it is. In a broader sense, this concept describes the way information is transferred between the various entities involved in its processing. In a narrower sense, it is the flow of documents between employees who perform a certain set of actions.
In the case of computer processes, workflow, in turn, can mean the automation of business processes, during which documents, information or tasks are automatically transferred from one employee to another based on appropriate procedures.
A workflow is a software process that supports teamwork. First of all, it allows you to specify the roles played by individuals in the processing of documents, as well as specify the intermediate states of files.
Delegation-related documents can be mentioned as an example to illustrate this workflow.
- The first person fills in the information about the place where the employee is to travel, which creates the delegation order document.
- The interested party receives the document, and after adding the date and means of transport, a delegation document is created and sent to the decision makers who take the order.
- After the task is completed, it is completed and returned.
In the above example, it is clear that each stage of writing is associated with a specific group of people and a change in the status of documents.
To illustrate this process, multi-color graphs are very often used, which simply indicate the teams of employees involved and determine the state of the document after processing by the group.
How does the workflow work?
As with any task, the workflow also has specific terminology associated with developing the task.
- The first and most important term is process, which simply defines a task to work on.
There is activity in this process. This is related to the parts of the task that have been assigned to individual employees. Two types of activity can be distinguished here: manual, which is performed by an employee, and automatic, which is performed by the system.
- Last transit. This term means the conditions necessary for a smooth transition from one activity to another.
Like any procedure, a workflow has its own clear beginning and end. The first step is usually to define the process. Here decisions are made regarding the teams of employees involved, the characteristics of the project and the division of labor.
- The next element is the implementation of the process.
The work of individual teams of employees on the task begins. At the same time, the software used provides other users with the status of actions performed as applications. At any time, the system checks the conditions on the way and decides on the next action.
Why use a workflow?
There are several reasons why such a work management system should be used. First of all, thanks to the use of modern technology, not all tasks need to be performed by human hands. Commitments can be automated, giving companies the opportunity to save time and cut costs associated with human labor.
With the right workflow management software, you can focus on improving the separation of tasks in terms of employee qualifications or the use of their access rights. At the same time, this leads to better management and control of work processes. Thus, using the appropriate workflow software, you can bring together the work of different departments (often located on different continents) and systems.
Workflow programs also allow for quick troubleshooting. This means that progress information is available more quickly, allowing you to respond immediately to downtime during operation.
Workflow Management Software
It turns out that such a program is not only a tool that allows you to exchange documents between individual employees, but also a set of options that give you the ability to manage business processes.
Because of the many different types of tasks, such software is typically targeted at users in customer service or manufacturing industries. This is due to the fact that the activities of such enterprises require very good coordination and control of the status of the tasks that make up the individual processes.
What gives the use of a document management program in a company?
First of all, it provides information about the control and testing of working methods. It shows who made changes to this activity and at what time, which can improve the process in the future, and also represents the current state of its execution. At the same time, the workflow software allows you to control the time it takes to complete a task and allows you to change the execution plan according to the actual activities.
Employees also benefit from this program. Each team member is assigned a task in which activities are ordered. This way of managing also motivates them to move forward, as it confirms their belief that they are links in a chain of important activities. Employees know it’s easy to identify the source of potential delays and find the person responsible for them.
Adaptation of work programs
The basis for the implementation of document management programs is the knowledge of management processes. On their basis, programs are developed that immediately show the places where modifications are needed. The implementation of the system indicates its pros and cons, which, when transferred to programmers, allow the application to be improved and adapted. As a result, they are an excellent tool for process control and workload reduction.