Communication is key, and I am not talking about the communication between you and your mother-in-law… I am talking about the communication between you and your team members. Unclear and ambiguous communication leads to confusion and confusion is one of the main reasons employees endure stress, frustrations and anxiety at work. With all these ingredients in place, a chaotic environment is easily created. Less easy, however, is to reorganise this chaotic environment.
It is obvious that poor communication causes confusion concerning day-to-day work activities. Who is responsible for which task and what does that task entails exactly? Vague task descriptions will confuse employees. They will put off assignments because they do not know how to execute them. Unproductivity makes its appearance. Extra mails, calls and questions stall other colleagues and work starts to build up. Employees can’t keep up and that’s when stress and frustrations get the upper hand. The once so peaceful work environment turns into a chaotic war zone. With no time for proper conversations concerning new or ongoing projects we find ourselves back at the beginning of the vicious cycle: poor communication.
By analysing the current situation of your business, you get an overview of all that is going on in your organization. List all the demands that are being made. Do not just focus on your employees but go beyond the physical boundaries of your workplace. Include your main stakeholders, such as your customers and suppliers, as well.
You can obtain this list by holding a meeting with your employees where, together, you define (re)occurring problems and possible solutions. If holding meetings with all employees and stakeholder isn’t possible for your business, we suggest putting out detailed surveys about specific workflows or activities. Leave room for open questions and motivate the respondents to answer them to make sure you get to the hidden problems within your organisation as well.
After gathering all this information, try to prioritize the list based on what the costs would be to fix the problem and what the benefits would be for your business. Focus on the most essential demands, the ones that are at the top of your list. This is the core set of demands you will begin to address amid the workplace chaos. Share the list with your employees so that they know where your priorities lay and can open the discussion. It is important for managers and employees to be on the same page about the order of the problems being tackled.
Defining workflows is a crucial step in the process of structuring your chaotic workplace. When starting to define workflows you need to ask yourself 3 questions:
Sit down with your teams and determine the best workflows for problematic document processes, as well as for the most common ones. Use the list of demands (previous point) to see where flows need to be fixed. Defining workflows can be done for basically any process within your business. From taking calls and passing on messages to complex document handling.
Share the fixed workflows with your employees but try to avoid confusion or information overload. Share only relevant workflows by categorizing your workflows in a way that each department, and each team within that department, knows which workflows apply to them. Be open to feedback. Chances are many workflows will need changes after implementation. Defining workflows is an ongoing process. Your business is growing and changing, so do your workflows.
The implementation of workflows is difficult if you rely on the individual capacity of each employee to remember the steps of each workflow. On top of that there is no guarantee your employees will work according to the fixed workflows. Turning your workflows into a digitized automated process means more control over the execution of workflows and less chance of unnecessary mistakes.
Digitizing your workflows can give you insights as to why a stagnation takes place. It will enable employees to work more efficiently instead of wasting time trying to solve peripheral issues. More structure, more productivity, less stress, less issues… Definitely a win-win-situation for your employees and your business.
If you have ever wondered about DMS software and what it is, well simply explained, Document Management System is the automated method of capturing, organising, securing, tagging, approving, digitizing and completing various tasks in association to all your business-files. Even though the majority of DMS’ are efficient at storing data in the Cloud, this software involves far more than only cloud storage.
There is a product by the name of Microsoft SharePoint designer that you have probably heard of. It was often related to the Microsoft Office software programs. Although available at one point, it has been discontinued. It was a very valuable HTML editor freeware that was used by millions of people.
When you’re running a business, it can be difficult to keep up with all of your responsibilities. That’s why document process automation solutions can be so helpful. When you’re able to automate certain aspects of your business, you’ll be able to devote more time to other tasks. Here’s how you can find the right automated process solutions for your business.
Questions or comments? Discover how ProcessDelight makes a difference for your business processes. Contact us right away.