How long does it take you to understand what to do in a process?

How long does it take you to understand what to do in a process?

Because it’s probably too long…..

Even if you’ve been doing your job for years, there will always be parts of it that are complicated. All businesses have processes, policies and procedures to check  – making sure they are easy to understand and quick to check seems obvious but we find so many organisations struggle to make this a reality. 

There are a few reasons for this – we’ll outline them below and offer some handy hints on how to make it easier on yourself and your business.

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Text Based Documentation.

Using complicated spreadsheets or long text documents to note down processes or procedures is hard to read when you are trying to get work done quickly. Especially if your processes aren’t straightforward. Plus if you are having to read a lengthy text based instructions when you need to branch off in different directions can mean it is challenging to get the information right the first time. 

You should consider that some people are visual learners and as such a text document really won’t work for them. Consider using a flow chart diagram or process map to summarise the steps. 

Flowcharts and Process Maps 

So this brings us on to our next option. These are a much more visual way to describe and communicate how things work, giving you a great overview and showing you how different processes branch off depending on what you need to do. 

We would recommend however that you consider that flowcharts can get overly complicated, especially if you have too many steps on one page. If you want to look at the bigger picture or drill down to the detail then zooming in and out means you struggle to read the text or get lost in the diagram. 

We recommend breaking your processes down into smaller sub-processes to make sure you can easily see the detail at each stage. You can do this by creating more flowcharts or choose a software that does this for you instantaneously.

Secondly – if you do go down the flowchart or process mapping route, go easy on the shapes and symbols. Remember not everyone will remember what means what and having to refer to a legend on the page is time consuming and frustrating. Keep it simple or use a process language like UPN that everyone will understand. 

Final Recommendations.

Our final piece of advice is to make sure you use simple language to describe each step. This can replace some of the shapes you use and force you to think about how clearly you have described the process in the first place.  

Just some simple suggestions to start making life easier for your organisation. Plus you might even save some time and money too. 

If you’d like to talk to our team to find out more about how Skore can help you then get in touch with us today.

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