Every single organisation has a unique, best practice workflow. An optimal approach to performance that, above any other method, can guarantee the business hits their number and delights their customers.
The challenge, for many companies, however, is to first identify exactly what their best practice is.
As businesses begin to scale, and more individuals contribute to the same, or similar processes, it’s only natural for variation to occur.
Deviation isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
An influx of new ideas can often generate even better processes and more efficient workflows.
But how to hone in one that which works best for your business? How can you identify your best practice workflow?
Try this simple, 4 stage approach…
Stage 1 – Discovery
It all starts with discovery.
Before you even think about collecting data on your current workflows, consider what the ultimate aim for that particular process is.
It might be completing the sale according to a certain framework. Or perhaps securing a fast, positive outcome for a support query.
Whatever your end goal, start with that in mind and work backwards.
Now you have your aim, it’s time to build a vision of perfection for your business. Without this concrete concept, identifying best practice can often lack direction.
“If you want to reach a goal, you must see the reaching in your own mind before you actually arrive at your goal.”Zig Ziglar
Consider how different people, stores or regions carry out your focus process. Miniscule variations can have significant impacts upon outcomes.
As a business you need to be able to discover precisely how processes are driven in different situations to identify those which operate most effectively.
Stage 2 – Management
You can’t hope to implement a best practice workflow if you aren’t managing it’s adherence.
Once you’ve discovered exactly what works best for you, harnessing the power of technology can help ensure everyone, no matter their role or location, buys into the new way of working.
“If you’re not already following process management best practices for your organisation, start today.”Gravity Flow
On an individual basis, clearly laying out precisely what best practice looks like in an easy to follow workflow makes adoption significantly easier.
Likewise, it can ensure that any pushback on new approaches are justified as each clearly defined step has an obvious and beneficial impact on both the life of your team and your customer.
For senior leaders, managing process also ensures that maximum rewards are reaped from discovering your bespoke workflows.
Ultimately, ongoing management of best practice allows an organisation to stay on the operational front foot.
Stage 3 – Flexibility
The beauty of each business is it’s individualism. Management is vital, but rigidity can be counterproductive.
“In consistent times, there’s a lot to be said for investing in the status quo.
But when we’re unsure about where the next shift is going to come from, investing in flexibility is preferable.”Seth Godin
For better or worse, it’s critical to embrace your organisational quirks.
What works for you may not work for another company, even those operating in your sector.
Remember to use that which makes you stand out to your advantage.
In this regard, it’s highly useful to consider cultures and who will be affected by any changes in process.
People all react differently to change, so being flexible in the implementation of best practice is crucial for ensuring high levels of adherence.
Stage 4 – Measuring
Without measuring, you can’t manage. And your best practice workflow may not remain best practice forever.
Consider the process of implementing your workflows to be one of continuous improvement. You are never truly finished refining your operational approach.
“By working to identify trends in the performance of your workflow, both in the teams and team members involved, you can tighten up the loose ends.”Project Manager
A key part of measurement, is to mitigate the impact of any internal improvements negatively affecting how customers experience your organisation.
Don’t ever let internal best practice workflows come at the expense of customer service.
Likewise, by reviewing best practice, you can account for industry changes and make room for flexibility.
Benchmarking of smaller goals along the way also allows you to easily track progress and see the incremental gains being achieved through your newly implemented processes.
In measuring you can restart the cycle over and over.
Best practice workflows are constantly evolving; accommodate that concept in your structure and staff and customers alike will benefit.
Ready to explore how Anthill can help identify and implement your bespoke, best practice workflow? Schedule a demo today.
Intrigued to learn more? Check out our Insights Hub to keep your business at the cutting edge.
October 12th, 2021-