A workflow system takes data management several steps forward. Instead of holding and managing data, a workflow system will interact with the data to simplify your daily routine
The Unique Stages in the Process - a 'Flow of Work'
Information is passed from department to department. If we make this an electronic process, when one department has completed their part, the next department in line is automatically notified. The process follows a path and can be tracked to establish where in the process any particular item is. This of course applies to any industry, not just car repair! Imagine a typical office where information is processed, then passed to the next person to deal with. If we look at say the context of a garage where cars are repaired, we can break the process down into several stages - the car is booked in, arrives and fault identified, parts ordered, repair carried out, complete and collected. Unique but connected stages of the process. If we now look at that in a work environment we would find that from the customer perspective, they would like to see what stage their car is at, the same can be said of the other departments within a garage. We now have a situation whereby we can see a distinct path the process would follow. One cannot be carried out with the previous step being complete. This is a typical example of a workflow. If we now translate that into an electronic system, look at the advantages we now have: Anyone can see which stage the work is at All steps can be time-stamped for compare and reference Patterns can be established From patterns come projections Customer records are established which can also be used From having a simple work methodology, we have now established a working, growing system of work planning and process management! This can be applied to almost any type of business regardless of what they do. Customer records, manufacturing, repair industry, service industry, health management, waste management, hire industry, storage and removals industry - the list is endless