Because the majority of companies rely on approvals to execute specific processes, creating a workflow is a must to ensure a streamlined system. However, this doesn’t happen most often—especially in smaller organizations.
There are many reasons why workflow doesn’t make things smoother in teams:
- Tasks are all over the place.
- Documents aren’t found.
- There’s no automation in place.
Not to mention, remote work has been added to the list—making it challenging to pass documents on.
Although remote work looked promising for some businesses, some companies found it difficult to handle and manage digital projects. Aside from making approvals slower, workplaces also suffer from disorganization and waste of business costs on unnecessary steps. Thankfully, creating a better workflow for simplified approvals now becomes easy to reach—with the right steps and a PDF workflow software like PlatoForms workflow.
This article will guide you on jumpstarting your workflow creation, and how PlatoForms workflow can improve your approval processes.
Table of Contents:
- Why a smooth workflow is important for approvals
- How to build a clear workflow for approvals in the organization
- Create a flow of assigned people
- Set the right tools
- Embrace automation
- Discuss and train your employees on how to use your workflow
- Test the efficiency of your workflow: Is it making your approval faster?
- How a PDF workflow software like PlatoForms creates a better workflow
Why is a smooth workflow important for approvals?
The cruciality of workflow is often overlooked—causing chaos and disorganization in the business. To be specific, it must be implemented when doing approvals to ensure the efficacy of each progress. To get into detail, other reasons why it’s essential include:
It eliminates unnecessary detours for signatures
Documents, especially confidential ones, often cause a ruckus when not passed to colleagues or clients for approval. Back when paper documents are still a thing, companies would waste a dime printing paper for different parties to fill out and sign. Due to the pandemic, when remote work happened in 2019, it wasn’t easy for businesses to go digital entirely, especially since previous documents were printed on paper. Hence, manual sending of approval forms included delivery through logistics, long waiting, and manual input.
Implementing an efficient workflow eliminates this situation. With PDF software for workflows such as PlatoForms, teams can just easily send out documents online for e-signatures. To add, this also benefits busy clients (especially executives on the go).
Pro tip: Aside from letting you convert PDFs to online forms and collecting e-signatures, PlatoForms offers e-signature certificates issued to ensure the integrity of your document.
Encourages a timeline-driven businesses
Every business is fast-paced—everything should be done quickly and effectively to keep the ball rolling. Companies that maximize the possibilities of technology ensure the productivity of employees and make way for a timeline-driven culture. Giving importance to deadlines, businesses faithful to deliverables can achieve so much more than disorganized workplaces.
It gives your real-time business insights
With a robust workflow, you can gain instant insights that will help you track what’s going on in your business. Even if mistakes are inevitable, some mishaps can be seen in advance, and options can be spread on for solutions. Additionally, keeping a record of your company’s insights lets you monitor the data you need—from each’s responsibilities to current tasks.
Pro tip: Convert PDFs to online forms with PlatoForms and keep track of your submissions in real-time.
How do you build a clear workflow for approvals in the organization?
Building an effective workflow is just a start—you need a detailed plan to create it. Note that every workflow is different for every company, and the steps below can vary. General tips on how to create an effective workflow include the following:
Create a flow of assigned people
To avoid miscommunication of who’s who, create a dedicated workflow for people assigned to a specific task. List out who will be the first person receiving the documents, the process after that, and the last person who will be maintaining the files.
Set the right tools
Once the people responsible are assigned, it’s essential to choose the right tools that will do the job. Consider using PDF software for a workflow to make approvals easier—such as PlatoForms. PlatoForms workflow for your PDF documents helps your organization streamline your approval process with our workflow feature—a feature designed to let you fill out a PDF in multiple steps.
Below is an example of a scenario that can benefit from our workflow feature:
- The client buys a car and fills out a form with information.
- The salesman gets the filled-out form and signs it.
- The salesman then sends the form to the manager for final approval.
- Once final approval is done, the deal is now closed.
By using PDF workflow software, you don’t have to print out multiple forms manually—you can just create a single one that can contain different steps for every other people that will fill out the form. This saves your business cost, time, and additional work.
The great thing about creating workflows today is you don’t have to start from scratch. Several tools can automate your internal process in minutes, depending on what kind of workflow you need. This helps you visualize what your workflow will look like and get a clear idea of what would lead to the next process of the task. An example of this is Asana’s workflow (See below):
Asana offers an automated flow to streamline your work called Workgraph. This workflow tool lets you map out who does a certain task and what happens next, focusing more on strategic activities. This way, your employees will know who will be the next person to turn to, especially during the process. Aside from having PDF workflow software, you can consider checking other digital workflow tools that can help you smoothen your company flow, such as Kissflow, ProcessMaker, and more.
Discuss and train your employees on how to use your workflow
Now that you’ve created your official workflow, it’s time to educate your employees on using it. It’s important to discuss the responsibilities of each other in detail so that everyone can get a grasp on each other’s tasks. Getting used to using your internal workflow may take time at first, but it will help your employees get the hang of it.
Test the efficiency of your workflow: Is it making your approval faster?
Training your employees on how to use your workflow is just the start—testing its efficiency is the way to prove whether it’s getting your process better or not. Test whether your workflow is working or not after months of using it by checking its effects. Some questions to consider include:
- Are the previous complexities of our internal process now addressed?
- What are the results of this workflow to everyone’s work process (both pros and cons)?
- What works with the help of this workflow?
- What doesn’t work for this workflow, and how can it be better?
- Is the approval process in your company now much better or not?
Testing the effectivity of your workflow allows you to see if it’s adding to your team’s productivity—it can also help you determine what needs to be improved. If your current workflow isn’t working for everyone, you might consider sitting down and reinventing it.
Creating a designated workflow for your team offers a streamlined process and a more productive time for everyone.
A workflow automates your manual process, including sending forms, documents, and apps connection.
Using PDF workflow software like PlatoForms in your team lets you create a single PDF that contains all the necessary details you need to fasten your approval. You can allow your clients or colleagues to complete their PDF forms online, send them out for approval, and submit their online PDF forms within minutes for faster transactions.
Creating a workflow isn’t easy, but you just have to start and try what works for everyone. Implementing it is only the start—maintaining workflows in the long term can help you achieve an improved approval process.
Be efficient with PlatoForms as your PDF workflow software
Company approvals have now become a breeze with our workflow feature. Create your document, have your client submit their online PDF form, sign it, and complete your PDF form by sending it to the approver online in seconds. You don’t have to waste time from manual passing of documents and longer processes—streamlining your company flow. Sign up here to jumpstart your efficient workflow today.