Five tips to improve your business processes

Want to make your workflow faster and more efficient? Follow these steps to lay the groundwork for success.

Improving business processes is always a challenge, whatever the size or scale of your organisation. Regardless of how cumbersome, time-consuming or inefficient your current processes are, there will inevitably be resistance from people who don’t see the point of change or who are unwilling to put up with short-term disruption for longer term gain. “We’ve always done it this way,” is the main stumbling block which innovators must navigate around. 

We’ve written this short guide to give business owners and leaders some key tips on where to start and how to improve the probability of success when embarking on a programme of business process improvement.

1. Get buy-in from the ground up

While it sounds like an obvious step, many organisations embark on ambitious changes to business-as-usual without first winning over the people who are going to be affected the most: those who carry out the processes.

2. And from the top-down

Everyone from the CEO to department heads and line managers should understand not just the ‘what’ but also the ‘why’ and ‘how’, so you start off with the support and resources you need to drive success. If chief decision-makers have a big picture understanding of what you are trying to achieve, it will be so much easier to sustain momentum when hiccups occur along the way.

3. Anticipate resistance – and have your answers ready

There will be workflow disruptions, and processes may take longer while everyone adapts to a new way of working. Be prepared to discuss the cons as well as the pros, while emphasising the overall benefits not just to the business but also to teams and individuals.

4. Resist the urge to attempt too much, too soon

Most businesses have multiple processes they would like to improve, for example, antiquated accounting systems, overly long recruitment processes, and  fragmented marketing campaign management. Don’t tackle multiple processes at once. Start with a relatively simple problem and use this as a template.

5. Start with accurate, comprehensive process mapping

You need to understand in detail how you do something now in order to do it better in the future. Again, this may seem obvious, but it’s surprising how many businesses operate for years with poor documentation of core processes – and pay the price when the staff member who best understands a particular system leaves, taking their knowledge with them. Effective process mapping is the framework for effective process management.

At Demeter, we have developed an AI-friendly Work OS platform which empowers business owners to successfully map, optimise and improve key business process flows.

Our tried-and-tested process management tool provides clarity and visibility across your entire organisation, all in one place, so you know what to improve, how, and when. Our technology integrates with your existing business systems, connecting everything together, breaking down siloes and creating a common language through process across your business.

We make process flow, so your business grows.

To take the first step towards improving business processes at your organisation, get in touch.