What You Miss Out on When You Don’t Have Processes
By Wessel Coetzee
Implementing efficient processes is such a critical factor in improving performance in our current environment. Not only does this save time, but it also saves costs, increases morale and maximises the value obtained from your current workforce. This could potentially avoid retrenchments, build trust and loyalty in your employees and increases customer confidence and satisfaction.
But how do processes achieve this?
Processes create efficiencies
Inefficiencies have a way of creeping into any business environment over time. Systems not being adopted fully or becoming outdated can lead to processes not being followed and additional, unnecessary tasks being performed. Staff turnover and high workloads are other reasons for work being done in an ad-hoc manner. Working in silos, even within a department, leads to disparate ways of working, which is never efficient.
Having standard processes and best practices that everybody aligns to ensures that work is done efficiently. Standard processes ensure that employees are not just busy doing work but rather spending time on the correct work which produces the best outcomes. Standard processes also make it much easier to integrate different processes across the business, leading to more effective work between employees and departments. Continuously improved processes ensure that current resources (people and systems) are utilised efficiently.
All the above saves a company time and money. At the same time, a lot more value is obtained from the existing resources. This is a more beneficial approach to cost-cutting and gives a company a competitive advantage, internally and externally.
Processes create predictability
When standard processes are mapped out and followed, the workflow becomes much more predictable. This makes it much easier to understand what and how many inputs are required to perform a set of tasks. Planning the timing of processes is critical to ensure work flows seamlessly from one process to the next.
The predictability of processes further ensures that outputs are more reliable. This ensures that concrete plans can be made, based on the consistency and quality of the outputs. With increased confidence in these results, planning and forecasting becomes much simpler and can be done more accurately. Customers will also have a more consistent experience which creates trust and loyalty.
Using varied processes and getting different results makes it almost impossible to understand what is causing the problem and what will make it better. Getting consistent results, due to standard processes, makes it easy to identify what needs to be tweaked to further improve the process and the outputs.
Processes create visibility
When work is done differently at different points in time, by different employees or departments, it is difficult to get an idea of what is being done, if it will be completed and how long it will still take to complete. When processes are set up and followed, performance can be tracked. KPIs can also be set up to measure performance and ensure work is being done as expected.
When it is clear how work should be done, it is much simpler to communicate this to new employees or other participants who may be required to assist in an emergency. Other departments will also have a much better understanding of what needs to be done for their requests to be completed, and this leads to a much better working relationship between them.
Having clearly defined processes ensure that risks can be identified effectively. This assists in implementing relevant controls that ensure work is delivered at the right standard, risks are appropriately reduced, and operations are not bogged down unnecessarily. This also simplifies the internal and external audit process to ensure these controls are performing as required.
We hope you can see how critical it is to have processes and how much value they add.
Our SynergProcess division work with clients to ensure that their people, processes and
systems work together for the best outcomes.