Information Moving with Workflow
automation is “the ability to convert existing manual tasks
into electronically automated processes.” With flexible,
scalable technology, it enables the automatic routing and
management of transaction information (like purchase orders,
claims, invoices, and applications) throughout one's
organization and over the Web.
automation results in streamlined procedures, increased
productivity, improved efficiency, enhanced communications
between all users, and better process management and tracking
- which ultimately leads to reduced costs.
automation is especially beneficial when included as part of
an overall content management solution. By combining the
benefits of document management with workflow automation, you
can be sure that the right information gets to the right
people at the right time. You can even integrate this
collaborative functionality directly into application
environments such as ERP and CRM.
complete system, employees can quickly begin prioritized work
specific to their job functions, obtain status updates, and
add information or change processing requirements for a
system's reporting elements give supervisory employees the
ability to view work being completed by all resources,
including individuals, groups of users, and specific tasks
within the business process. Supervisors can constantly
monitor and manage the system with the ability to add
flexibility, balance load, and eliminate delays through
real-time reallocation of work. With a well-designed workflow
and clear procedures, you will have the intelligence you need
to concentrate more effectively on operational needs and
organizational strategy to build your business.
By eliminating time consuming manual processes in your
organization, workflow can help you achieve significant
- Reduced operating costs
- Improved productivity
- Faster processing times
- Improved services
- Elimination of dull, repetitive tasks associated
with manual processes
- Ease of new process deployment or process
- Better data quality because of reduction in human
- Improved communication throughout the
- Improved planning capabilities
As with all technology projects there is a set of
steps to take to ensure a smooth implementation.
1. Project scope - It is important to
clearly define the boundaries of the project. As the project
moves forward, modifications to the scope must be carefully
2. Planning for Implementation – This
vital step in the progress of your project is the most
crucial. Pay close attention to detail and your project will
be a success. The first part of this step is to clearly
understand how your business processes currently work. This is
usually done by talking with the employees and managers
involved in the process. Once you have a clear picture of what
happens currently, you can look into where processes can be
improved with workflow technology.
3. Application Development - Once you
fully understand your current processes and have identified
the necessary process improvements, you and your workflow
technology partners begin to develop your application.
Appropriate scope and planning will greatly simplify this step
of the process.
4. Testing – Make sure adequate
testing is conducted to ensure that everything is working
5. Training – Adding a workflow
management system is a big adjustment for employees. In
addition to transitioning from paper to electronic records,
they also must adjust to the new business processes. Managing
the transition smoothly makes a considerable contribution to
the success of the project.
6. Post-Implementation – Once your
system is up and running and the organization’s processes are
running smoothly, it’s time to examine the efficiency of the
new methods and learn from the implementation experience so
that changes, upgrades and additional technology can be
handled with ease in the future.
Top 5 Signs You Should
You’ve done your homework. You know what workflow does
and how it can help in areas like Accounting, Human Resources
and other paper-intensive areas of your business. But how do
you know if it’s really something you should consider for your
business? We’ve compiled these 5 warning signs to help you
know when it’s time to look into implementing workflow.
1. Employees are walking documents department to
department and desk to desk to get approvals. A
workflow solution eliminates this manual routing process.
2. When people are out of the office documents
sit and wait for them at their desk until they return and can
approve and route the form to the next person. With
web-based approval, users can approve anywhere,
3. Paper documents awaiting approval get
buried and forgotten in an in-box. Workflow will let
you track where your document is in the workflow process and
can send automated e-mail reminders to the user responsible
for the hold-up.
4. Your managers lack adequate reporting
capabilities to assess current processes. With
workflow, you can track your processes, identify bottlenecks,
and adjust to eliminate problem areas.
5. You have current processes involving
sequential routing where multiple people must approve a
document before it gets routed to the next step. With
workflow, you can enable parallel routing. That is, a document
can be routed to multiple people simultaneously for approval
increasing efficiency dramatically.
To learn more about workflow, call us at 630.875.1100
or send your questions to Ask_The_Expert@idt-inc.com.