What is the definition of an approval process?
An approval process or approval workflow is the series of events that take place when different stakeholders have to sign off on or approve material – for instance, content marketing material for a campaign or product features.
The main reason for using approval workflows is to optimize and shorten the time spent on the process while making sure that all parties involved know who is responsible for specific tasks at specific times.
How do you speed up your approval processes and cut them down to just a few steps? While still ensuring that you get zero errors in the published material and campaigns?
First, you should ask yourself a few important questions:
- Where in the workflow do you make your approvals? And why?
- How many resources do you involve, and how much work do you trigger by each approval?
- Could the number of approval rounds be reduced?
- How are your abilities to distribute the approval efforts throughout the overall workflow instead of doing all approvals at the end of the process?
- What are the most typical corrections made after an approval round?
All of these questions – and then some – will help you build a strategy towards the fastest and most precise approval and compliance processes.
At Encode, we offer an Approval and Compliance strategy service that can include:
- Workflow analysis
- Data model analysis
- Organizational design analysis
- Culture analysis
- Data quality analysis
The analyses will get you the best starting point for optimizing your approval workflows so that you can focus your time and resources on other value-adding activities.
Once you have gone over the details and answered the questions above to form your optimal approval process, the next step could be to find software for just that: approval processes.
Your first thought might be that it sounds excessive. Software for approval? But if approval processes are manual, the risk of error increases significantly: papers could disappear, e-mails and deadlines could be missed because of misunderstandings or unclear placement of responsibility, among others.
Software, for e.g., marketing approval processes, will also make a dynamic approval process easier. This is, for instance, often necessary in connection with content approval workflows or processes, where a lot of back-and-forth between departments is required. With an approval management software, you will be automating who is notified depending on how many steps back the process is rolled, and which corrections are to be made.
It will ensure that no person must track down project managers or senior executives for final or new approval – the software will automatically notify them and remind them about deadlines.
The right approval management software could be helping you with much more than just streamlining your marketing approval processes. With the Encode system, you get an all-in-one solution for both approval and general workflow management, product information management, media flow, and production automation, and so much more.