Reevaluating older existing workflow processes is a good idea for several reasons, even if your staff has created workarounds due to changing circumstances. Here are a few key reasons why reevaluation is beneficial:
- Adaptation to Change: Workflows that were established in the past may not be efficient or effective in the present due to changes in technology, market conditions, customer expectations, or internal organizational factors. By reevaluating these processes, you can identify areas that require adjustment to align with current needs and priorities.
- Enhanced Efficiency: Over time, workarounds may have been developed to overcome shortcomings or limitations of existing processes. While these workarounds may have temporarily addressed issues, they might not be the most efficient or sustainable solutions. Reevaluation allows you to streamline workflows, remove redundant steps, and identify opportunities for automation, ultimately improving efficiency and productivity.
- Quality Improvement: Workarounds can introduce inconsistencies or errors into the workflow, leading to a decreased quality in outputs or deliverables. By reevaluating processes, you can identify bottlenecks, error-prone steps, or areas where quality control may have been compromised. This enables you to implement improvements and ensure higher-quality outcomes.
- Employee Engagement and Satisfaction: When staff members encounter inefficient or frustrating workflows, it can negatively impact their morale, productivity, and job satisfaction. By involving employees in the reevaluation process, their insights and experiences can contribute to identifying pain points and generating solutions. This collaborative approach fosters a sense of ownership and engagement among the staff, improving overall satisfaction and motivation.
- Cost Reduction: Outdated or inefficient workflows can result in unnecessary costs, such as wasted time, redundant efforts, or increased resource consumption. By reevaluating processes, you can identify opportunities to optimize resource allocation, reduce waste, and potentially save costs for the organization.
- Agility and Adaptability: Organizations must be agile and adaptable to stay competitive in a rapidly changing business landscape. Reevaluating workflows allows you to ensure that your processes can quickly respond to new challenges, market demands, or technological advancements. This flexibility enables your organization to adapt more effectively and seize emerging opportunities.
It’s important to approach the reevaluation process with an open mind and involve key stakeholders, including staff members who have developed workarounds. Their insights and experiences can provide valuable perspectives on what works well and what needs improvement. Organizations can foster innovation, efficiency, and growth by embracing change and continuously reevaluating and refining workflows.
Authored by Byron Aulick, CEEm, ECMm, LSSgb, CDIA
Certified Efficiency Expert Training Sr. Instructor
Sr. Vice President of Consulting Services