Overview – 2021 R4

Overview – 2021 R4

Overview – 2021 R4

The Only-Relevant-Stuff release

For every 200 work emails you receive in the day, 144 of them are irrelevant 🤯

Given that we spend 2.5 hours on average on emails every day, that’s a whole lot of time being wasted on things that we shouldn’t be bothering with.

So, we thought for our 4th release of 2021 we’d focus on this. Cutting out the noise. The distractions. The pollution.

Note – this works with Slack too. 😀

NEW – Enhanced Instruction fields (or Variables as the techies say)

Flowingly has always had instruction fields. From the outset this field was designed to inform your employees of the action they need to take.

But we felt like it was missing something. It was very general. Not specific to that instance of the workflow.

We found that that people were regularly spending time scrolling through the history of the workflow to find specific pieces of information.

No longer.

Introducing Variables.

Variables within the Instruction field now allow you to pull information from previous fields into that Instruction. Now that field not only informs you what you need to do, but it gives you all the information you require to do it!

This saves time looking for previously submitted information, giving you everything you need to know, and ONLY that.

No more time distracted by information that has no relevance to you.

Our users are sure to get creative with this feature, but for now here are a few specific ways you can make the most of this new feature.

NEW – Optional Notifications

We’d always assumed that our users wanted to be notified when a Step is assigned to them.

It turns out this is not always the case.

In a world full of notifications, it is easy to glaze over. To get notification fatigue.

Every Step in Flowingly now gives you the option to toggle automatic notifications on or off. This means that you can:

Turn notifications off for a specific step when you feel there is no need for them.

Set your own custom notification using the Custom Email. Just turn off the automatic notification and build your own one.

This helps you cut out “inbox pollution” (a favorite term of our own Hervé Roy), giving you more control that ever over what is relevant and irrelevant for your employees.

Upgraded – Categories

Here’s something we always tell people when designing forms for their workflows:

Dropdown lists are great. But they don’t always provide the best user experience. Especially when half the options within the list aren’t relevant to the user.

Well, we decided to take our own advice.

Categorization in Flowingly was always handled with dropdown lists. This was fine when you only had 3-5 options. Anything over that and it became a time waster.

Now your Categories are displayed within a neat little list on the left-hand side of your screen.

This applies to your Start section, To Do list, Flows I’m In, Process Maps and Reports.

Reduce your time waste

There are all sorts of ways we waste time at work. Navigating email chains. Undertaking menial, repetitive tasks. Getting distracted by irrelevant information.

Flowingly reduces all of those and more.

With Flowingly, companies have reduced their employee offboarding from 40 emails down to 7. Others have reduced the time spent on their rates processes by 40%.

To see how you could cut admin and waste out of your processes, get a trial today!

Get your business Flowing

Favorite Recipes – 2021 R2

Favorite Recipes – 2021 R2

Favorite Recipes – 2021 R2

With Flowingly integrations giving you access to endless options in your tech stack, we asked our team to narrow it down to some of their favorite recipes.

Microsoft Teams – Sending a company update

This one was universal. Previously we would make manual announcements in Teams about the completion of a step or workflow.

Think: Announcing that a new employee is joining the team. Confirming an update to a system. Announcing a big sale.

Now, this all happens automatically. Upon the completion of a step, Flowingly sends an update through teams, packed with only the important info.

You can see this in action in the video above.

Note – this works with Slack too. 😀

Trello – Creating and updating a project card

The clear favorite from our Customer Success team. You can now have submission of a Flowingly form or step create and/or update a Trello card.

Not just limited to Trello, this goes for any project management tool (think Asana, Jira or Teams).

Perfect for that point where process meets project.

Like an Idea to Initiative workflow, or the onboarding of a customer or contractor.

Not only can you create the card, but you can automatically populate it with relevant info and assign project owners.

This one is also shown off in the video above.

Xero – Creating a new supplier

Pretty obvious where this one comes from right? It’s been a gamechanger for our Finance team.

You can do all sorts of things in Xero using Flowingly Integrations, but the favorite has to be adding a new supplier automatically.

If you’re like us, when CAPEX or OPEX is raised you may have a field where someone has to mark whether they are using an existing or a new supplier. If they select new supplier, that supplier then has to be setup in your billing system.

By integrating Flowingly and Xero (or Quickbooks) you can automatically create that new supplier from information captured in the Flowingly form.

No more double handling. No more copy-paste errors. 🤖

Excel – Adding a row to a spreadsheet

Everyone uses spreadsheets, but this one is a real time saver for our Operations team.

Most companies live in spreadsheets. We’re no different.

Excel. Google Sheets. SharePoint lists.

With the new integrations, you can still live in those spreadsheets. You just don’t have to manually update them.

Like when an employee slips on the floor and reports an H&S incident through the Flowingly mobile app. The incident spreadsheet is automatically updated. ✔️

Or when a new customer is signed up by the sales team. Onboarding started. The customer spreadsheet is automatically updated. ✔️

By integrating Flowingly with your spreadsheets, you can keep your spreadsheets as your system of record, without ever needing to double-handle the data ever again.

If you want to see this in action, check out the video up above.

This is just a small selection of the many actions you can take with Flowingly integrations. As you can see in the video, our Customer Onboarding workflow utilizes the Teams, Trello and Excel connections. This has helped us reduce copy-paste errors and freed up everyone’s time to focus more on the customer, less on the admin.

To learn more about how Flowingly can help you manage requests, tasks and approvals with real-time visibility get a trial today!

Get your business Flowing

Release Notes – 2021 R2

Release Notes – 2021 R2

Release Notes – 2021 R2

Introducing Flowingly Integrations

When it comes to reducing time spent on work-about-work, connecting your favorite tools is a no-brainer.

That’s why we’re so excited to announce Flowingly Integrations.

Flowingly Integrations gives you the ability to connect Flowingly with thousands of applications. That’s right. Thousands.

Here’s a quick look at some of the powerful ways your team can start to leverage Flowingly Integrations to maximize productivity, reduce errors and keep all your records up-to-date.

Populate an Excel or Google Sheet

Ever wished an Incident Report logged in Flowingly would automatically update your Incident spreadsheet?

Now it can.

As soon as your employee logs that incident, Flowingly allocates relevant steps and tasks to people around the organization. Using Flow Integrations, you can now have it automatically update your incident spreadsheet with each incident.

If your organization revolves around spreadsheets, this integration means that your employees don’t have to change the way they work.

Reducing system change? Check.

Reducing double handling? Check.

It’s a win-win.

Create a Trello card or board

Now this is exciting. Blending process management with project management.

When you’re kicking off a customer onboarding, there will be a standardized process. You’ll follow the onboarding workflow. Managing the handover from sales to customer success. Setting the customer up in your service desk. Making sure the invoice has been paid. That’s the process.

What about after the onboarding is done? At that point you’re entering project management territory. Things need to be more dynamic. More flexible.

Enter tools like Trello and Asana.

Using Flowingly Integrations, you can create project boards and cards automatically during the onboarding. No more double handling. No more copy-paste errors.

Free up your project teams to spend more time on projects, less time on admin.

Send a Teams or Slack notification

Make sure your teams are alerted to key updates in the channels they live in.

Flowingly natively supports email and mobile push notifications. With Flowingly Integrations you can now add Microsoft Teams and Slack.

With the integration, you will receive real-time notifications directly within Teams or Slack.

You’ll also receive the details that you need.

This could be a notification about a new supplier that employees can use. Including their catalogue and key contact details.

Or maybe it’s about an incident on the production floor. That a certain product run was found to be defective and has now been isolated.

Or just something super simple. An alert to approve your employee’s leave. That your new employee has signed their device policy. That your CAPEX request has been approved.

Schedule a Calendar event

Employees often enter times and dates into workflow forms. They might be specifying when a new employee is starting. Or when a project is set to start. Or maybe they’re setting a date for an employee’s farewell.

With Flowingly Integrations, you can have those time/date fields automatically create a Calendar event in Outlook.

This is a great way to ensure your calendar is kept up-to-date and, more importantly, that everyone remembers key events.

+ Many more recipes

Create an invoice in Xero. Update a CRM contact. Create an employee in BambooHR. With over 1000 applications to integrate with, the possibilities are endless.

For information on how to set these integrations up in your Flowingly environment, reach out to your Flowingly Customer Success Manager.

If you don’t yet have Flowingly, but want to see how it fits into your tech stack, get your trial now.

Let your tools do the work

Flowingly Integrations will not only save you time, they will help your employees focus on quality work rather than admin.

From reducing errors to automating manual tasks. Record-keeping to real-time notifications.

We are thrilled to help future-proof your tech stack and fast-track your digital transformation.

As a result, we’re making the employee and customer experiences better, ensuring that people get the information they need, in the systems they use.

To learn more about how Flowingly can help you manage requests, tasks and approvals with real-time visibility get a trial today!

Get your business Flowing

The quickest wins of process improvement

The quickest wins of process improvement

The quickest wins of process improvement

Nothing replaces a robust process review and improvement process but unfortunately, we don’t always have the capacity or the buy-in.

The best way to build up momentum for a comprehensive process review is by quickly demonstrating value. Formal process improvement frameworks often incorporate quick wins into their early stages. Sometimes even these quick wins aren’t quick enough.

With that in mind, we’ve developed a plan for a 15-minute session to help your team achieve more and get the ball rolling on BPI.

The 15-minute, extra quick, quick-wins session

1. Identify the attendees to contribute to the quick-wins session.

2. Communicate with transparency, explaining the session to attendees and describe which process(es) are in scope.

3. Ask the attendees to create a record of issues in the week ahead of the session.

A Record of Issues

Whenever a team member encounters an undocumented problem or area of improvement, create a new sticky note with the name of the process is and the root cause of what went wrong. Particularly look for tasks that were more difficult, cost more or took more time than they could have.

The session:

4. During the session, add all sticky notes to a white board or poster board. Classify each issue by process and remove any duplicates. Briefly introduce each issue to the group.

5. Ask the attendees to spend five minutes silently writing solutions and sticking them next to their respective issues.

6. Once the time is up, take a photo of the board as it is.

7. Ask the group the following questions, moving solutions aside as they’re excluded.

a “Are there any solutions on the board that are not within our power to implement?”
b “Are there any solutions on the board that are risky?”
c “Are there any solutions on the board that are not low cost?”

8. Assign remaining solutions to individuals to serve as the “change owners”

Follow up:

9. Follow up a week later with each change owner to document and support the changes.

10. Use documented outcomes to build a case for BPI.

11. Keep the list of issues, processes and suggested solutions for the initial stages of a process review.

Small wins build momentum

The key to getting a process improvement initiative off the ground is demonstrating value to stakeholders almost immediately.

Importantly, process improvement can lose momentum almost instantaneously. If businesses are to succeed in moving forward, it’s vital to celebrate every win, no matter how big or small, and one should never underestimate the power of positive reinforcement.

You will find more content like this in our process improvement guide , Creating a Culture of Process Improvement.

Take your processes to new heights with our process playbooks.

Discover the building blocks of process improvement.

Get your business Flowing

The best processes come from within

The best processes come from within

The best processes come from within

Empowering your team to own their processes.

Business processes are core to competitive advantage. All companies have them, yet very few companies acknowledge or mine them for their true value. So how can you define your business processes? It starts, carries on, and finishes with people.

Here’s how…

The people who will use the processes need to build the processes

Your staff are the lifeblood of your organization, without them, your business wouldn’t exist. That’s why it’s crucial to have them front and center on your business process journey.

Speak with your employees, work with them, watch them, listen to them, hear what they say and note down what they don’t. Your team often knows what the optimal workflows look like, which means by working with them you’ll have a more realistic, comprehensive business process understanding.

One other bonus of bringing staff on this journey is that they’ll be more likely to support any change that may occur as a result (and you know how much people love change) if they’re seen as valuable contributors.

Empowering

ownership of processes

We all know the feeling of getting burnt, with the affected part of the body telling the brain “ouch, something has to change because I can’t stand this for much longer”.

Businesses are no different. Employees are the equivalent feedback mechanism for the business, playing a critical part in maintaining and fixing business processes.

Apart from having employees build the processes so they’re invested from the start, what else can be done to encourage such ownership?

  • Set up a system that rewards employees for proactively seeking improvement.
  • Always keep key outcomes front of mind to create a bigger picture for their outputs.
  • Make the documented processes easily accessible so they’re always in mind.
  • Consider utilizing the feedback features of your workflow software so employees at any level can continually refer to other shared insights.

Creating a culture of Improvement

Just because you document your business processes doesn’t mean your employees will seek continual improvement, let alone prescribe to them. You need to create a culture of improvement, which has to happen from the top (in an Undercover Boss kind of way if needs be).

Through our experience working with businesses of all shapes and sizes, we’ve noticed two points worth keeping in mind when instilling a culture of improvement:

Highlight excellence In ordered to recognize the excellence, you first need to identify what it looks like in your business, field, or industry. Once this has been established, acknowledging parts of the business or employees will motivate the right kind of behaviour and drive business success.

Expect greatness Over time high performance is an achievement that’s progressively unlocked over time. Don’t expect excellence immediately, but rather take time in the planning phase to ensure you have a pragmatic timeframe. And also don’t settle for when you think you’ve ‘achieved’ excellence, because all you really did was reset the bar.

So where do the best business processes come from?

Take the governance approach to business processes. Ensure your employees drive the development of your processes, empower employees to own the processes and instill a culture of improvement.

This is an excerpt from Flowingly’s process guide, Creating a Culture of Process Improvement.

Take your processes to new heights with our process playbooks. Discover the building blocks of process improvement.

Get your business Flowing