Have you been looking at process mapping for your business, but not quite got round to it yet? We don’t blame you. 2019 was a hectic year, and for a lot of business owners the prospect of Brexit and trying to prepare for the worst took up a lot of time. But as we move into 2020, it’s time to take a look at how your business works and start building some internal resilience. And maybe, you’ll even find yourself more productive and profitable at the end! To prove it, here are just five of the benefits you could see from mapping your processes this year.
Document Your Business Process
Creating a process map captures your processes in an easy to understand and follow format. It pulls out areas that are less than clear and gives you a blueprint for exactly how the process is done. Now, you might look at this and decide you want to make some changes in 2020, or you might think your ‘current start’ processes are absolutely fine as they are. Either way, creating a process map will present you with a picture of how things are currently done. Once you have that in place a lot of different things can be done with it.
Make Knowledge Transfers Easier
Whether you like to think about it or not, this is the time of year when a lot of people start looking for a career change. They have spent some time off work at home with the family, and have started wondering whether the grass really is greener in another job. So over the next few months, you may lose a few people. That’s OK, it’s all part of business – but what you need to do is make sure you don’t lose their knowledge along with them.
Process mapping gives everyone in the organisation the ability to follow processes and do the task it details. They clearly mark out who is responsible and accountable for a task, what the steps within the task are, and who needs to be consulted or informed during the process. This means that even if you lose the person in charge of doing that task, anyone else in the business (and their replacement) will be able to pick it up, follow the steps and do it accurately. Knowledge transfer issues will become a thing of the past, and you won’t have to panic if you suddenly lose a member of staff. The more widely your processes are shared throughout the business, the more benefit they will deliver.
Agree On Best Practices
Depending on your industry, best practice might be something that’s carved in stone, or it might be more flexible and subjective. But with your processes documented, it becomes much easier to agree and adopt a consistent best practice across each process and across the business as a whole. This is usually best done before the process maps are shared through a process library. Process maps give you a view into how things are done differently in different parts of an organisation, and allow you to adopt the most efficient way of doing things.
Compliance is a big buzzword at the moment, and in a lot of businesses, it’s incredibly important. Stating compliant with both general and industry-specific regulations can be a challenge, along with any voluntary regulations you may want to comply with, like quality standards ISO 9000, or the EFQM excellence model. Part of being compliant is showcasing how your organisation is compliant – which is often a laborious and time-consuming task.
But presenting your auditor with a library of process maps showing that your processes are complaint can make this a lot quicker and easier – especially if process maps can be easily searched and reported on. Even before getting to the auditing stage, process mapping can be a helpful tool in showing you when work needs to be done to achieve compliance.
Find Opportunities For Improvement
Every process in your business should add value. Otherwise, there isn’t much point in doing it! But when there are very complex processes to follow, it can be difficult to see where that value comes in – or if the process is providing enough value. Mapping out each process in detail gives you the ability to see exactly where the value is, and where there is room for improvement. You might identify places where work is being duplicated, or where things are being produced that are not them being used efficiently. Often it’s the little things that make a big difference here, and just by mapping and tweaking each process you could find your business runs more efficiently overall.
At Libreea, we specialise in helping businesses understand and map their processes from beginning to end. With process mapping workshops and 1 on 1 support and coaching, we can help you draw out each and every step of your business processes, spot areas for improvement and then implement them in an effective way. So what are you waiting for? Take your business into a brighter 2020. Just get in touch with the team today.