Improved business efficiencies = increased returns.
You know the saying, “A picture speaks 1000 words.”? Business process mapping is a case in point. It’s easier, quicker and more efficient to visually communicate the important details of a process to staff, customers and suppliers than writing an extensive monologue of instructions or directions.
What is business process mapping?
In any business, the simplest process can become complicated and drawn-out. Steps missed, orders delayed, data lost. Clearly, something is wrong. So, what’s the solution? Business process mapping.
It’s the what, how and who of a business process – a visual representation that defines what a business does by graphically depicting workflows from start to end and those involved in the process.
Often called flow charts or workflow diagrams, process maps are created using readily available software such as Lucidchart.
When mapping a process, you simply draw a box for each step and connect the boxes with arrows demonstrating a flow of activity. It can look like a linear flowchart such as the one below or in the case of more complex processes a map looks more like a matrix of activities.
An example of a simple process map is this social media post flowchart.
Why is process mapping important?
Business process mapping highlights waste, streamlines work processes and improves understanding of all aspects of your business.
Efficiency gains = $$$
A well-executed process map delivers productivity and efficiency gains, reduces waste and empowers staff all of which can add thousands of dollars to a business’ bottom line. And once a process is mapped, it can be analysed more deeply to explore further process improvements.
A documented process for new employees reduces staff induction time and ensures consistency, quality and continuity of output.
Staff engagement and collaboration in creating process improvements through mapping is a powerful tool to improve morale and to shine a spotlight on the “stars” within your team which in turn lifts productivity.
Sometimes it’s necessary to explain a process to others outside the business. A visual representation is easier and quicker to digest than reading a long, narrative description.
What is process mapping software?
In the past process, mapping was done by hand. Not anymore. There are countless online software programs now available. I recommend Lucidchart.
Here’s why. This software has been specifically built to deliver amazing collaboration benefits all of which are proven to boost productivity. With 15 million users worldwide Lucidchart offers the following benefits:
- Group chats in real-time.
- Extensive compatibility. It functions on any browser, anywhere.
- Powerful document traceability.
- Secure and dependable – proven to keep your data safe.
- Seamless integration with leading cloud providers.
Business process mapping doesn’t have to be difficult. With software now readily available online you can visualise and update your work processes with ease, keep pace with change and plan for the future.