It’s essential to streamline workflows on projects to be more productive and efficient.
In addition, by simplifying, chaotic situations are put in order while making the best use of time.
A project management workflow is a crucial component of any operation, and simplifying it as much as possible is key to ensuring efficiency.
What are workflows in projects?
Workflows are essentially a series of steps that must be followed to complete a project.
Often, these workflows involve teams with many people and must ensure that all individuals access the information they need promptly.
How you move between tasks in a workflow can be a decisive factor that determines its efficiency.
If transitions between tasks are convoluted, this can lead to an inefficient workflow. Having clear and consistent workflows, on the other hand, is critical to the success of any organization.
Failure to implement an effective project management workflow can lead to a wide range of problems affecting any department in an organization.
Aside from capital, the most valuable asset an organization has is time.
If you can find ways to reduce the amount of time spent on projects, you can focus attention on other aspects of the business that may be more neglected.
How to Streamline Project Workflows
That’s why simplifying workflows in projects becomes very important. So let’s see how to do it in detail:
Streamlining workflows: Defining success factors
Before you start working on a workflow to simplify it, it’s essential to define the success factors.
The questions to ask are:
- What are you trying to achieve through this process?
- How is the success of the workflow determined?
Streamline workflows: Documenting workflow
Whatever workflow you’re analyzing, it’s important to list all the tasks necessary to bring the idea to completion, no matter how small they are.
Starting with the end goal and working backward, we will have the opportunity to consider each step to ensure success carefully.
This is a process audit in which you will become aware of any unnecessary or missing steps.
Many will likely be so busy with project work that they don’t have time to devote to workflow analysis.
However, it is important to take this step to examine and subsequently simplify
We at Twproject use the WBS to define all the phases of the project, working on it to include all the steps necessary for its completion and then we use the Gantt to define the duration of the various phases and the dependencies.
Streamlining workflows: Choosing a point person
Any attempt to improve or simplify workflows, especially if you’re adding a new tool, means asking people to do something they tend to hate: change their routines. You might find this article on change in business helpful.
Although the proposed workflow is more efficient and helps improve processes, many people may be hesitant to adopt it.
One of the first steps, then, is to find a reference person to be an agent of change; someone ideally who:
- Have a vested interest in the outcome;
- Be sincerely interested in making a difference;
- He is a natural communicator and effective collaborator;
- Knows how to solve problems;
- Has leadership skills.
Simplifying workflows: Start small
Workflows may be complex, and making a change may initially cause even more problems, even to simplify them.
Especially the transition from manual to automated workflows could be very complicated.
That’s why it’s essential to start with small changes and, if necessary, run a pilot project that will demonstrate the benefits of the new workflow.
A small project will also provide an opportunity to identify and resolve any initial and unforeseen problems quickly.
Starting with something small and definable, with an attainable goal, allows for consensus.
People are used to the tools and processes they’re using and don’t let go easily unless you can demonstrate the benefits of the new flow concretely.
Streamline workflows: Choose a time interval
Especially when a pilot project or test goes outside of day-to-day business operations, it’s crucial to set a deadline.
Otherwise, it can be easy to lose track of time and devote too many resources to testing rather than the actual project.
By streamlining and, where possible, automating project workflows, you will be able to take advantage of the resulting organizational simplicity.
Projects will move more smoothly, teams will communicate, meet and disband seamlessly, and unnecessary tasks will fade away.
And reducing unnecessary tasks will help increase productivity overall.
One solution that many organizations are opting for is project management software that can make the execution of all the basic operations much smoother thanks, in fact, to the simplification of workflows that, where possible, are fully automated.