How to make your workflows more human

The next time you walk around the office, count how many employees have sticky notes with login details stuck to their monitors. These colorful reminders signal outdated employee enterprise software and a need for more human-centric workflows.

Employees toggle between apps about 10 times per hour, and the average worker wastes 30 to 60 minutes per dayswitching from one application to the next. The human brain wasn’t designed to handle all this mental juggling. In fact, research has found task-switching can cause a 40 percent drop in productivity.

By creating human-centric workflows, organizations will:

  • Enjoy productivity gains
  • Experience higher rates of compliance
  • Increase management support
  • Improve customer interactions

What is a human-centric workflow model?

Employee needs are at the core of a human-centric workflow model—considering human skills  and tasks first and using system functions to support them. During the development process, workflow designers should include employee input and seek to simplify complicated and time-consuming processes.

A human-centric workflow allows employees to:

  • Automatically prioritize tasks
  • Personalize data
  • Eliminate time-wasting busy work
  • Make data-driven decisions
  • Be more productive
  • Complete tasks on the employee’s device of choice

In a recent article featuring advice from HR experts, the HR director for the US Department of Veterans Affairs said, “Don’t assume you know what employees want because you were once in their shoes. Employment experience priorities should come from data and research, not from assumptions in boardrooms.”

Empower employees by eliminating frustration

The first step in developing a human-centric workflow is to give employees tools to do their jobs more effectively. For example, the Cincinnati Airport used to schedule restroom cleaning based upon flight arrivals and departures. A significant increase in local traffic made peak restroom use times unpredictable and cleaning crews couldn’t complete their work on a set schedule.

To reduce employee frustration and help cleaning staff be more productive, airport management installed foot traffic sensors throughout the airport. As a result, employees were able to identify the best time to complete their work using smart devices broadcasting live traffic data from the sensors.

Consider what information is needed and when

Office employees can also benefit from human-centric workflows. According to Cottrill Research, the average knowledge worker spends about 30 percent of their workday searching for information.

A human-centric workflow delivers information when and where it’s needed. The when can be a scheduled reminder, a personalized notification, or delivered dynamically based upon the completion (or non-completion) of tasks. The where should be anywhere an employee is working—whether that be a mobile device, a company intranet, or even a messenger client.  Research shows 17 percent less time is wasted when employees can access enterprise apps on endpoints of their choice.

Use technology to improve workflows and productivity

Inefficient processes and outdated enterprise software cause frustration and prevent employees from working to their full potential. When employees are provided with tools that help eliminate productivity pain points and break down complicated workflows into simple steps, it easier for them to stay engaged and productive throughout the day.

By bringing together tasks and information from multiple enterprise apps into a personalized portal, Sapho Employee Experience Portal makes it easy to rebuild workflows around workers instead of the business systems they must use. Using micro apps, Sapho enables companies to streamline complicated processes by:

  • Allowing employees to find information across multiple enterprise systems using advanced search capabilities.
  • Giving managers access to an overview of their team’s tasks, such as what is uncompleted or the time-to-completion, allowing them to identify issues and assess performance at-a-glance.
  • Enabling employees to complete common daily tasks, such as submitting a PTO request or service desk ticket, with a single click.

Using Sapho, employees and managers can receive personalized notifications about high-priority tasks, interesting or anomaly events relevant to their work, and complete basic tasks on any device, intranet, or messenger.

Employee business applications will remain an important part of work, but it’s important to ensure you set your workforce up for success. Gain a competitive advantage by simplifying and humanizing your workflows to increase productivity, engagement, and overall job satisfaction.

Topic: Digital workplace

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