The benefits of using a flexible workflow management system that fits the way you work
The benefits of a simple task management are not available in every scenario. Task management systems suffer from three fundamental limitations.
- These systems are only available for business processes that do not vary between organizations. There are no such tools for processes that every organization does differently, or for processes that are too uncommon to create a market for a dedicated tool.
- The underlying business process model supports little or no customization, so either the tool dictates the process that the business must use, or the tool is abandoned when it cannot keep up with an evolving process.
- The software offers little or no possibility to integrate with other IT systems, which limits it to manual tasks and data management.
Organizations that find task management systems too limiting need a more flexible and powerful solution.
Workflow management system – a step up from task management
Workflow management systems take task management to the next level, by making it possible to customise the business process. Not only can you use a workflow system to define a process model that matches the way you work, you can regularly tweak this model as you change the way you work to improve business performance.
A workflow management system uses a custom business process model to automatically create the right tasks at the right time, and assign them to the right person. The workflow engine is like a super alert supervisor who leaps into action as soon as one person completes a task, and informs the next person in the process that there is a new task for them to work on. This, and other automatic email notifications, keep the work flowing.
A workflow management system delivers important benefits that task management and ticket systems lack.
- Teams can use a tool that supports the real business process, instead of having to change the way they work to accommodate the tool. By focusing on value creating tasks, the team can deliver better results without wasting time on unnecessary work.
- Business operations staff can update the process model to follow changes in an evolving business process, so the system remains valuable. Less flexible systems have a shorter lifetime, and a correspondingly lower return on investment.
- Teams can model and automate multiple processes in one system, so they don’t have to learn to use a separate tool for each one. This reduces the cost of maintaining workflows and the overhead of software expertise.
- Managers can use templates to add custom email notifications that inform stakeholders about key milestones. This saves the time it would otherwise take to manually explain the status of each workflow to people who are less familiar with the business process.
- IT can integrate their own systems into the process models, so that information isn’t just trapped in one system. Integration avoids the additional cost and likelihood of errors that come with manually copying information.
When you go beyond ticket systems by embracing workflow management, you experience task management that’s tailored to fit your business processes. The result is that you save time creating and assigning tasks and spend less time managing daily work.
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