A Workflow is not a product. It is a process; it is about a process. A workflow is a sequence of processes through which something gets done. All systems have workflows. It is a clear path from beginning to end. You can have one workflow for a system or you can have several workflows in a system. You can have a string of workflows within a system or a workflow that connect systems.
The point is that workflows are all around us and we all use them consciously and unconsciously. They are designed and used in order to simplify the path to accomplishment. Creatives, such as photographers, UI/UX designers, and graphic artists, use workflows to keep all their work organized. For example, a photographer might use the following workflow after a photo-shoot:
- upload image from camera to PC,
- import images into an editor and edit images,
- format images for web and for print,
- upload edited images to cloud storage,
- place best images into website portfolio.
That might be a workflow of a photographer. A professional chef is another great, non-tech-world example of a person who uses workflows.
As you can see, workflow makes thing we do more efficient.
In IT or Tech, engineers use workflows all the time. In the most recent years Workflow has been used to identify a specific way of doing a task. Engineers, programmers, developers, and architects love using workflows so much that they implement them into the products that we make. For example, in online streaming (OTT), Network DVRs (cDVR), or Video-on-Demand (VOD), there are several workflows:
- There is a workflow to upload the content or videos to the online storage or cloud storage.
- There are workflows to send and distribute those videos on Content Delivery Networks (CDNs).
- And there are workflows to optimize quality (ABR) once the content reaches the mobile device, the tablet or the cellphone.
As a small business owner, a home-based business owner, a social-marketer, or mediapreneur, you too need and probably use workflows. Why? Because they automate your current way of doing things. As an entrepreneur, you already have processes in place to do the things you need to do and get done. Now, automate them. That is a workflow. For example, you use an organizer or notebook to write down your appointments, your to-do lists, and keep notes from meetings. Since you already have a workflow, now implement some automation to the process by having an electronic organizer on your mobile device instead of using paper.
High performance people, are the cream of the crop at using and having workflows. They use them to save time, automate the routine and mundane tasks, and simplify how they accomplish so much.
Remember, a workflow is a sequence of processes through which something gets done. Therefore, workflows are about efficiency and effectiveness. Consider what you do in your workplace and in your everyday life. Identify the workflows. Identify the processes that can be automated and improved upon to make things more efficient and effective.