Applying workflows to remote working

Applying workflow to remote working

In this article, “Applying Workflow to Remote Working”, we are going to explain why automated workflows are essential to running virtual offices.

More and more people are choosing to work from home, and more and more companies are changing their policies to better accommodate their remote workers. This will benefit both the worker and the companies that can now hire talent anywhere in the world.

But when this work dynamic is put into practice, it requires a very clear timeline for the execution of tasks and individual objectives.

What is a process workflow?

There are many definitions available for Workflows.

Essentially a  workflow has an orchestrated and repeatable pattern of activity, facilitated by the systematic organization of resources into processes that transform materials, provide services, or process information.

Webinar process mockup diagram

When applied to companies, and in the context of digital transformation, it can be described as the automation of the organization’s work processes. This means that a workflow defines the order in which each task will be performed. As a result, tasks will flow from one employee to another, following the established rules and automatisms, until the activity is finished.

In a remote working environment, an automatic workflow connects all the staff involved in the activity.

Organization and Technology are key factors in benefiting from remote work, so that organisations can maintain their pace of activity. Thanks to the computerisation of workflows, it is possible to maintain consistency in the execution of processes, even when working remotely.

Moreover, with process automation, processes become streamlined, organized and more accessible.

What is the purpose of applying a workflow to remote work?

Automating workflows makes it possible to integrate all business processes, and therefore improve the organization of your business model.  

Integrating all processes will improve internal communication. Once implemented, the system will oversee the sending of tasks to the corresponding people or departments to ensure they are performed correctly and on time.

In a remote working environment, these improvements in communication channels and task assignments ensure that employees know their obligations and that they have the information they need to carry them out.

Workflow organization and process automation has a positive effect on business performance and works on a corporate level. As a result, an employee’s perception of belonging within the organisation is heightened and they feel more valued and recognised.

The work dynamic in automated processes also contributes to improving response times and decision making.

And let’s not forget that the ultimate beneficiary of all these strategies is the customer. Their level of satisfaction regarding the relationship with the company will also improve.

Types of Workflow

In a corporate work environment, we can find structured and unstructured activities.

Structured activities are routine activities that have an established execution process associated with them. In other words, they are a set of coordinated tasks whose structure has been designed in advance, and which we use repeatedly throughout time. This is what we call business processes, and they combine tasks performed by people, and automatisms executed by different software tools: low code, AI, RPA, etc.

Unstructured activities are tasks that arise as a result of daily activities but are not governed by any pattern of execution. For example, when a manager wants to ask an employee about the result of a previously performed assignment and the employee must verify the performed activities. Logically, these tasks are not susceptible to diagramming, although some low-code tools such as AuraPortal enable ad-hoc functionalities to deal with these requests, and to have a record in the system.

Finally, there may be structured processes that include ad-hoc functionalities in their workflow. As an example, we can see this process carried out with AuraPortal that combines tasks executed by people with artificial intelligence and includes ad-hoc functionalities that can be executed from a button in a form.

Tomás Martí