There are as many ways of measuring the success of your business processes as there are ways to get things done. No two organizations are exactly alike. However, there is one thing all of the ways of measuring business process success have in common: Metrics.
It doesn’t matter if you’re talking about a customer-facing process or internal tasks, such as accounts payable or new employee onboarding. Without mechanisms in place to review and report on day-to-day activities, it is nearly impossible to know how effective your processes actually are. The goal for most businesses is to make processes as time- and cost-efficient as possible. When you automate those processes and tasks, reporting becomes fast and simple. This, in turn, can help your organization further fine-tune processes in order to achieve additional efficiencies without sacrificing quality or service.
1. Evaluate the Steps in Your Process
To build business processes you can report on, the first step is to identify and evaluate each step involved in the process. This phase involves some introspection, as you must look at each component with a critical eye.
A thorough evaluation considers the time involved, when and where human intervention is involved, where potential bottlenecks are likely to occur, and where the opportunity for, or likelihood of, errors exists. This evaluation can be eye-opening, especially for processes that are manual and highly paper-dependent.
The evaluation process should also help you identify any redundant or unnecessary steps, as well as making you aware of processes handled by one department that might, instead, whether partially or completely by a different part of the company.
2. Implement Electronic Documents and Automated Workflows
After identifying the processes your organization relies on and inventorying individual steps and elements, it’s time to consider the benefits of implementing business process automation.
Automating business processes can significantly improve processing time and consistency issues for a variety of tasks and activities by removing much of the human component. Rather than being dependent on individual employees to route paper documents from each step to the next, automation uses built-in, customized workflow logic to ensure the process continues moving along the appropriate path.
In addition, automation significantly reduces the risk of unnecessary delays that can result when a paper document is mis-routed or becomes “lost” in someone’s inbox or on their desk. Companies that implement automated processes typically report a decrease in process errors, further improving accuracy and efficiency metrics.
3. Develop and Use Relevant and Actionable Metrics and Reports
Once you have introduced automation as a means of improving the repetitive processes your employees handle every day, you will be ready to identify the individual metrics you can use to evaluate the success of each process. In some organizations, metrics are as simple as the number of forms approved in a particular time frame or the length of time between form submission and action. The goal is to identify numbers that are meaningful. These types of metrics can be invaluable in supporting requests for additional full time employees or other budget requests for a department, for example.
Reporting on automation is simple, once you have defined the parameters. Managers can generate on-demand, real-time reports or can schedule periodic reports for senior company leaders.
Are your company’s business processes designed in a way that streamlines operations while providing management relevant and actionable information? Treeno Software’s workflow automation solutions can help you get there. To learn more, contact us today.