Using Workflow Management Tools

A workflow management system offers an organized infrastructure for the setup, operation and monitoring of an automated sequence of activities, usually based on a workflow pattern. It can be used to track the progress of work in production, sales and orders, or in a complex network. Workflow management helps you to manage the workflow from multiple perspectives, including technical, project-based and customer oriented.

In business, workflow management usually aims at improving efficiency in doing tasks rather than in completing specific tasks. An effective workflow management application will allow managing tasks and sub-tasks through an ordered workflow, from start to finish. This means, for example, that rather than having a series of individual screens for information collection or planning, users will have a centralized view of all project-related tasks, which can be filtered and reviewed at a later stage. Workflow automation helps you do this. It starts by planning your workflow, then setting up workflows in your software that automatically coordinate actions in parallel.

Workflow automation tools, such as Workflow Management Systems, allow your business to more effectively handle various activities in your organization. The initial planning stage of workflow management is done during the planning phase. You create your roadmap based on the business requirements and the current state of the organization. Next, you determine the number and type of processes involved in the various projects. Next, you list the project details, milestones, and activities, such as testing and bug-fixing. Projects are usually separated into phases, such as goals and solutions, and these stages should be described clearly so that the downstream processes and activities in each phase can be planned.

Once your project is fully planned out, your workflow management system can handle it, starting with the execution of your project plan. Workflow processes then allow tasks to be assigned to individual employees, tracked by project name, description, priority, and owner. These tasks can also be scheduled for completion date and time. Depending on your workflow management solution, some tasks can be automatically completed, saving your time and reducing overall workload.

Workflow management tools offer more than just assistance in planning the workflow of your organization. Some of these tools offer reporting and alert features that notify you whenever certain processes fail or complete successfully. Workflow automation tools also provide support for workflow processes, such as integration with existing processes and other computer-based processes. This provides an improved information flow and higher efficiency in decision making and delivery.

These tools are also very helpful in controlling costs and improving operational procedures. You can easily create workflows according to your specific needs, modifying those that may no longer apply. Workflows can even be completely automated, taking much of the manual process out of the equation. By applying workflow management solutions to your workflow processes, you can improve your business practices and boost return on investment.