There is no organization that wants its workflow to be slowed down for any reason. Unproductive employees and delays are harmful to a business environment.
Work in every organization frequently requires approval from managers and directors before it can formally begin or progress to the next step. Within organizations, approval processes are defined to specify how submitted work should be approved or rejected.
When these processes are not created and optimized correctly, they become slow and prone to delays. Most organizations are beginning to use digitized approval processes like Precoro. However, if they do not actively automate these processes, it can lead to decreased productivity and efficiency.
What Is An Approval Process?
An approval process is a formally defined method of getting things done within an organization. Budgets, new vendor verification, equipment for new hires, team member expenses, and much more can all be approved.
As a type of workflow, it works best when it is standardized across an organization and can follow the same steps every time it is run. Organizations can use either manual or automated approval processes, or a combination of the two.
Employees must follow specific steps in a manual approval process, and they may or may not be required to record their approvals. An automated approval process workflow makes use of software that either guides the user through the process or can complete the steps automatically based on predetermined requisites.
Tips To Improve Approval Process
A well-configured approval process will improve the integrity, speed, and productivity of your team. The ability to efficiently review and approve work is a critical business process.
Here are some tips to level up your approval process.
1. Understand your company’s workflow
Your team will be able to work more efficiently and collaboratively if you automate your workflows and manage your proofing process. With digital proofing, your team will be able to access proofs and documents at any time and from any location, as well as collaborate in real-time.
Good approval workflows will save you time worrying about the status of a project, the adjustments that need to be made, and will keep you focused on the bigger picture of meeting deadlines.
2. Involve only required people
Far too often, the chain of reviewers and approvers is way longer than necessary. Often, people are unsure who needs to be involved, so they invite more people than needed.
The longer the sign-off process takes, the more people are involved. Make sure you just have the required people and you’ll save time by eliminating unwanted adjustments.
3. Map an approval process
It is important to map the current review and approval process to recognize and consider potential inefficiencies and pain points. This may involve the creation of an entirely new system.
Methods like department meetings and emails can slow down tasks, feedback, and revisions. An effective and reliable approval process will remove these time-consuming complications and provide the workers with the resources they need to complete the job correctly, the first time.
4. Communicate about the feedback process
You’ll also need a straightforward and well-understood mechanism for reporting any changes. The ‘track changes’ function in Word and ‘sticky notes’ in PDFs make editing in these packages relatively simple. However, it is not as easy for other marketing platforms, such as websites.
Automated workflow systems allow people from various teams and locations to review, mark up, and sign off on documents in real-time online. When everyone’s edits are available, you can minimize or eliminate repetition, conflicting orders, and rework.
5. Define a selection criteria
Defining and communicating the requirements saves time. Project sponsors would not spend time on initiatives that will not be funded. Selection requirements may include strategic relevance, regulatory enforcement, financial health, and business and technological flexibility to accommodate potential changes.
6. Discuss reviewer availability beforehand
You don’t want to submit a project for approval just to discover that your client will be unavailable for a variety of reasons.
When you discuss availability with clients ahead of time, you can develop your project schedule around their schedule. It is also a wise decision to request that stakeholders appoint a backup reviewer so that you are not left in the dark if plans change.
7. Make initial approvals conditional on subsequent reviews
Conduct more research for projects for which you do not have enough details to approve. After the product and project scope has been specified in some situations, the team can approve a project based on subsequent reviews.
Project scoping processes involve gathering specifications, developing a comprehensive outline of the project and product, and breaking the project down into objectives. The scoping procedure is a journey of exploration.
8. Incorporate review and approvals into the strategy
Formalize the workflow by surrounding it with tasks, dates, and assignments. Make sure assignments and milestones are clearly outlined so that when you present your strategy to the clients, they will easily follow along.
You may have addressed all of these issues at the beginning of the project, but circumstances change, and clients aren’t as invested in the project’s specifics as you are. Consider this a golden opportunity to revisit past decisions and ensure if they are still valid. It is often better to change the plan before work begins.
9. Regularly review the approval process and standards
You’ll need to keep a close eye on how things are going and keep your clients updated along the way.
You are not doing your job as a project manager if you are not continually evaluating what is to come. Your project plan and subsequent progress reports are basic resources you can use to define processes and responsibilities along the way.
10. Seek professional advice
It is crucial to work with an expert who understands how these various strategies fit into your specific workflow process in today’s setting.
They have experience implementing and incorporating a wide range of approval solutions and processes and can provide insight into what has worked with previous clients and apply the experience to you.
Businesses need to have a proper approval system in place. If you don’t have one, budgets and manpower can be squandered as you wait for input and revisions. Nobody wants dissatisfied co-workers or clients.
By digitizing the approval process with workflow management software, you can boost your team’s quality and performance while effortlessly managing every process.