Process Documentation: Game Changer
Process Documentation: The game Changer for Everyone on Your Team
There are many reasons to document processes. Growth, standardization, and increasing value of the organization are top components that affect everyone from the individual employee to the organization itself. When done strategically, the benefits are tremendous to each party involved. The organization gains structure that make operations more stable and valuable. Each team member levels-up their career development and personal success which have more weight as part of a bigger team achievement than they do on their own.
Here are a few of the benefits you can expect to achieve:
Who and why they should care:
|Transparency increases accountability and communication.||Clear understanding of performance expectations for yourself and other departments. Easier to identify when support from leaders/resources is not enough to achieve goals.||Better performing teams. Less chance for missed opportunities.||Handoff between departments is clearly defined. Less misunderstandings across departments.|
|More efficiency||Don’t have to rely on memory. Can grow to the next level more quickly and hire/train new support staff. Don’t waste time.||Training new staff takes less time and energy for everyone. Don’t have to recreate the wheel each time you need to use it.||Less duplication of efforts. Ability to grow and scale. Examination leads to optimization. Protect organizational knowledge for the future.|
|More effectiveness||Actions are supported by managers and big picture.||Tasks performed the same way regardless of who does them = static standard level of service and care to clients.||More opportunity for brand awareness and standard of service for client interactions. Easier guidance for mission and vision fulfillment. Remove the dependence on key employees or owners.|
|Optimization (test, measure, delegate, automate)||Less time on tedious tasks leads to specialization, learning, training replacements, and career growth.||Can utilize team members in positions that require more of their unique talents.||Better performing organization. People move on to more complex, engaging, and valuable work; perform better for the organization.|
|Metric tracking to tie actions with goals.||Actions make more of an impact and are proven. Greater understanding of success through measurements. Easier to determine priorities.||Better aligned teams. Ability to redirect or double down on actions.||Greater success for people and the organization. Baseline understanding creates clarity of direction.|
Common Challenges: Reason to create documentation
Key individuals hold the majority of tasks. Constant growth – get better with quality, scale, efficiency, resource usage, time usage, errors, interpersonal behavior.
Memory, Recreating the Wheel, Human Error. Increase of transparency, efficiency, and effectiveness. Hand-off between departments is clearly defined and misunderstandings are yesterday’s problem. Nothing is left on the table. workflows and checklists to remind of the important part of the process os they are not forgotten.
Inconsistent products, services, and experiences for your audience. Meet a standard regardless of who performs work. Know clients are taken care of. Uphold your branding and fulfill your vision and mission.
Training is costly in time, adoption of accountabilities, and turnover. Training becomes easier. Business can scale and new jobs can be created and filled.
Disengaged employees with low productivity. People can test, measure, and automate or delegate leaving them to move on to more complex, engaging and valuable work. Career growth and organization growth go hand in hand.
Miscommunication and lack of understanding of accountabilities. Clearly understood goals and daily workflows that support them. Drivers that prove whether actions are impacting desired effects and the ability to redirect when outcomes are undesirable.
Lack of ability to measure actions toward improvements. Collect a baseline for future measurements. Measure against history, adjust parameters for better information and better strategic decision making.
Fear of what happens when / if key players were to step out. Protect valuable working knowledge of the organization. Knowledge is not lost if something happens to one person. Anything can happen to anyone…I like to think of it as if someone won the lottery and moved to Tahiti. Someone else could step in or be hired and institutional knowledge will be retained.
Already have a great start to documentation?
We all know that analysis paralysis is a real thing. Here are few things to keep in mind when taking a dive into your own process documentation.
- It can be a time-consuming practice and often leads down a choose your own adventure of rabbit holes.
- You are the experts at the process but may be too close to see potential changes.
- Be organized in the collection and usage of materials that could be valuable for other business initiatives.
- Keep a big picture perspective to redirect when rabbit holes begin to look enticing.
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