The best business advice, opinion, news and expertise in Greater Manchester and further afield.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Guest Blog

Improving your Business “Postbox” Process

Dave Robert Fricker – Managing Director of Daviker TotalWorkFlow

We work with many businesses who have taken the time and effort to put processes in place, but then never really get the opportunity to look at if the process could be improved upon or if it is being followed properly. Monitoring and managing existing processes within a business can be a very quick and simple way of increasing efficiencies and productivity throughout your business.

We find that many businesses deploy what we have termed ‘post box processes’. Bear with me here, but many companies we work with treat their processes like they treat their post! We all know that if we place our letter in an envelope, write down clear instructions for the staff, then stick it in a Post Box it will eventually 99 times in 100 work out well and our ‘process’ will get delivered. What we don’t know is could the process be improved from the ‘Postbox’ to the delivery. It is clear the processes are working, but could the service be faster, cheaper or better? In some cases we only know there are problems when post goes missing and customers become dissatisfied. Could you be losing out on the chance to improve your bottom line even more?

On occasions, businesses large and small will experience common problems within their processes. These include poor prioritisation of tasks, human errors and job role ambiguity which can result in missed deadlines and inconsistent service. However, if these issues occur more frequently in a short space of time, it can result in fewer repeat business orders, drop in revenues, low staff morale and poor retention of personnel. The net result - a successful enterprise turns into a poor one, even with all these wonderful processes.

Fear not, as there are various products on the market that can assist with developing your business processes, one example is workflow software.

Workflow software enables you to break down large processes into smaller manageable tasks. The software consistently manages these tasks and processes ensuring your staff get right tasks completed in the correct order. Workflow programs gives you the power to make key management decisions based the real-time data provided.

There is a school of thought within small to medium business community that such bespoke workflow software is costly to install and hard to manage, but there are now products including TotalWorkFlow out there that are targeted just to the SME market, which can bring the costs down considerably.

Remember, we all know post will get there eventually but could your business do with upgrading from 2nd class post to 1st class processes.

Members of Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce are entitled to a six-month free trail of TotalWorkFlow. If you are interested in finding out more about TotalWorkFlow and how it can help your business, call 0845 250 80 70 or e-mail

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