The problem with procedure manuals – 3 reasons to have your processes in the cloud

Processes and procedures are an essential part of any business. Whether they’re held in the heads of long-serving staff, or carefully charted in extensive manuals, every organization has a wealth of knowledge about how to get things done.

That accumulated information is an asset like any other, and it’s worth protecting and preserving it. Unfortunately, many companies rely on paper records and static charts to keep it and miss out on the potential that a more engaging and interactive process management approach could offer.

Processes don’t standstill

Processes by their very nature aren’t static, but many of the ways they’re captured and managed in organizations are. Rather than dynamic, living documents that evolve with the changing shape of the business, they are point-in-time records of how something was done in that context. Even the most comprehensive analysis of a procedure will become irrelevant the moment a system, tool or adjoining process changes.

Shifts in technology, best practice and regulations can all require a corresponding change in the process. When that process is kept on paper, it becomes challenging to update effectively.

This is why Nintex Promapp is a process portal that teams love to use. The processes held there are far from static, allowing process owners and experts to review and edit them in real-time. At any point in time, a process viewed on Nintex Promapp will be the latest published version, ensuring consistency across the business and continuing relevance.

Cloud processes benefits

Editing a process is as easy as writing it down. Drag and drop activities to reorder them and Nintex Promapp updates the process map.

Processes need to be visible

Part of the problem is even finding the processes to update. Many organizations produce comprehensive procedure manuals and distribute them to the line of business, but once delivered these are relegated to a shelf somewhere, left in the bottom of a filing cabinet or used to prop up a computer monitor. Those scattered procedures become artifacts almost the moment they are distributed, as there is no central way to keep track of them and keep them updated.

By contrast, an online process portal provides a central source of truth that everyone can access for clear, up-to-date process information.

Within Nintex Promapp, users have a personalized dashboard to reduce the information overload that comes with hundreds or thousands of processes in an enterprise environment. They can easily see the changes that affect them, and access just those processes they are part of with just a few clicks.

The search function makes it simple to track down exactly the process required, and a ‘recently viewed’ or ‘favorites’ list keeps regularly used processes readily on hand.

Cloud processes benefits

Users aren’t overwhelmed by information. The personal dashboard lets them easily access the processes they need.

Process improvement is everyone’s job

Unfortunately, when it becomes clear that the existing disconnected processes are no longer fit for purpose, the entire exercise of capturing the current procedures, charting them and distributing the updated documentation needs to be repeated. This usually falls to one or two people tasked with the process excellence mandate, or even the beleaguered IT team who must again source the information from the line of business and try to make sense of it all.

It becomes a costly and inefficient cycle that perpetuates the problem with each iteration as the processes again become irrelevant, hard to find and impossible to update almost as soon as they are published.

Within Nintex Promapp, when a procedure doesn’t match the reality, or when circumstances change that affect how a process is executed, the change can be captured immediately. Any user can identify those opportunities and offer feedback, suggesting improvements or adjustments to the way things are done.

The relevant process stakeholders are notified when that occurs and can engage in the conversation for continuous improvement. Once a change is settled upon, the updated process is published and immediately becomes live for the entire organization. That means the processes don’t expire but can be updated in real-time so innovations that emerge can be shared across the business for maximum effect.

Cloud processes benefits

Feedback alerts the process stakeholders and lets them engage in the improvement conversation. Implementing it is as easy as making an edit and publishing the updated process.

Online and interactive processes are essential for the pace of business in the digital age. You can read more about engaging your whole organization and what continuous improvement can mean for your business in our whitepaper: “Fostering innovation: Continuous improvement is the gateway to business agility.”

 

Want to try Nintex Promapp out for yourself to see what it can do for your business? Click here to get a free trial.

 

 

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