How Process Automation could save you $50,000 every year

roi.pngAre you wondering if you should automate your routine day-to-day approvals? You’d be amazed at the Return on Investment. Let’s do a quick analysis. Approval workflows are usually at least 3 steps long and, often quite a bit longer. For now, let’s consider a 3-step workflow:

  1. Performed by an Employee, for example, asking for a Travel Authorization or Purchase Requisition. Maybe a Salesperson is trying to get a PO from a Client and needs Manager approval for special pricing. Let’s say this employee costs $80,000/year including benefits, vacation, taxes and other costs. Typically this would translate to a salary of about $60,000.
  2. Performed by a Manager who essentially checks the request, approves it if it is valid or sends it back for corrections. Let’s say the manager costs $100,000/year inclusive of all costs.
  3. Performed by an HR or Finance person who essentially updates an internal system and does the equivalent of filing the request away (email folder, network drive, paper filing cabinet, document management system). Let’s assume this person costs $60,000/year inclusive of all costs. Maybe they work part-time.

Now, assume that the time savings are 10 min, 3 min and 3 min respectively in each step. That’s pretty conservative given there’s no printing, signing, scanning etc. involved. Finally, assume that there are 400 approvals per month of all kinds (Vacation requests, Sales Orders, Time Sheets, Travel Authorizations etc.)

How much do you think you will save in costs? You might be shocked:

You’ll save ~$50,000 every single year or 57% of your costs and see net positive ROI in just a bit over 2 months.

It’s amazing how much the paper/email process actually costs you – close to $85K per year. And that doesn’t even take into account the time spent trying to track down emails, chasing down managers for signatures or, perhaps of greater importance, the Opportunity Cost of delayed approvals.

Try it yourself by clicking the button below.

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It’s often hard to see how much those paper/email workflows are really costing you. Visit our website to view customer success stories and signup for a free trial.

[Webinar recording] What’s new in frevvo 7.3

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New in V7.3

frevvo 7.3 was recently released. We’ve added some cool new functionality and improved it in ways that are really important to customers.

We’re also excited about some upcoming developments including big improvements to the Visual Rule Builder coming soon as part of V7.4 this year.

Watch this video recording of the webinar where MaryAnn demonstrated several new and upcoming capabilities including:

  • Connecting to SharePoint using point and click wizards. You can save your data and documents to lists or libraries.
  • Visual Precondition Rule Builder.
  • Connecting pick lists to web services with zero code.
  • One-click Save and Test. A little thing that customers have been wanting.
  • Visual Rule Builder for calculations and other advanced functions (coming in V7.4).

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Get people to actually use your shiny new workflows

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Hint: It’s all about Usability!

You’ve invested in workflow automation. Looks great but sometimes getting people to actually use it can itself be a Sisyphean task. People resist change and will quickly fall back to bad habits like emailing PDFs and Excel spreadsheets around to manage key information.

So, how do you onboard your users?

1. Involve them from the beginning

This is a pretty obvious one. The earlier you get stakeholders into the process the more likely they are to adopt it. People are naturally more invested in a solution that they’ve had a chance to impact. Soliciting feedback and actually implementing suggestions are critical elements.

When we work with customers on a new project, we go to great lengths to set this up. We spend time upfront to make sure we’re building something users want and make sure there are at least a couple of UAT-Change Request Implementation cycles. That way, the people who have to actually use the new system can affect it.

2. Usability, Usability, Usability!

if_seo_web-34_1046124.pngI can’t stress this enough. It does not matter how robust and awesome your system is. If it’s hard to use, it will not be adopted. If it looks good and is easy to use, people will forgive other shortcomings.

Usability (for end users) should probably be your #1 criterion in selecting a workflow automation system. Some tips:

  • Great Looks: Employees are also consumers. They use slick apps everyday and get used to a fantastic UX. If work apps have old-fashioned, clunky UIs they’ll never catch on.
  • Sensible Terminology: Make sure your buttons, labels, messages are familiar and helpful. For example, if the workflow will route to the CFO for secondary approval the button should say “Route to CFO” rather than the generic “Continue”.
  • Help Text: Some fields require further explanation. The Label is not always enough. Take the time to add help and it can make a huge difference. Tooltips and placeholders are other options.
  • Mobile friendly: It has to work naturally on all devices. Buttons might need to be slightly larger on mobile so they’re easier to click using your finger. Forms may need to be broken up into multiple pages to avoid overwhelming smaller screens.
  • Speed: Don’t underestimate the value of performance. People love systems where they don’t have to wait around.
  • Consistency: A big part of great UX is consistency. Buttons should be in the same place, labels should follow consistent conventions, the look & feel should not vary dramatically from one process to the next.

3. Training / Feedback

1492276951_seo_web_3-01.pngEnd user training should be part of every rollout. But, it’s just the first step. Once people have used the new system for a period of time, they’ll have feedback for you. It’s worth going back and actually talking to stakeholders – is this helping you? Are you doing less manual work? Do you genuinely have more time for things that matter? What can we improve?

4. Iterative improvement

Once people tell you what you can improve, it’s important to go back and actually address issues as quickly as possible. Nothing’s more frustrating than getting it 90% right only to see users abandon your system because you overlooked a couple of things.

5. Communicate success

Share meaningful success stories with everyone involved in the system. Recognizing people’s efforts (company meeting, spot awards) in bringing change to the organization will always be appreciated as long as you don’t overdo it and the recognition is for real measurable gains.

Ultimately, though, we’d advise you to focus hardest on Usability. If they find it hard to use the new workflows, the rest doesn’t matter.

 

Workflow Automation Any_____

I spend a lot of time with our customers. Most of them easily grasp the benefits of process automation. But many of them still have questions that generally fall into the “Will it work with my _____”?

Automating manual processes helps reduce paperwork and increase efficiency for a 50 or 5000-person company, for those who prefer Cloud or On-Premise, independent of where the organization operates, and the systems you have. Let’s look at how:

Workflow AnyTime

time-sheet.pngYour customers, partners and users want to interact with your organization on their own timelines. Often, they’re distributed all over the world.

If you can only process Sales Orders, Purchase Requisitions and routine approvals during business hours in your timezone, you’re probably losing business and wasting people’s time.

Automated workflows with frevvo are instantly available 24×7 – there’s no need to wait till you’re in the office at your desk, approvals can be processed from any time zone worldwide and your business can flow faster.

Workflow AnyWhere

travel-auth.pngToday’s organizations are distributed worldwide. Your workflows need to be the same. Imagine a student trying to get approval from his/her Faculty Advisor for a time-critical paper or conference travel request. The Professor might be attending a conference, or giving a lecture at the Shanghai campus.

With frevvo the Professor can simply approve the request and sign it wherever in the world he/she is. The student doesn’t have to waste time chasing down the signature.

And, you won’t even have to worry about absent-minded Professors – frevvo’s software can automatically remind them if they don’t get around to signing in a timely manner

Workflow on Any Device

mobile-workflow-128.pngMobile is everywhere. I’m sure there’s no need to expand upon that. Students, workers, patients, customers all work with your organization on a bewildering array of mobile devices.

Your forms and workflows simply must work on mobile. They must be responsive, they must look and feel natural and they must be fast enough for slower mobile networks. It’s not trivial to do and the shortage of mobile developers exacerbates the problem.

Luckily, there’s frevvo. Simply design your forms and workflows once using your desktop browser and let frevvo worry about the details. They’ll just work automatically on all devices from tiny smartphone screens to large, hi-res tablets. Of course, you can customize as desired and it isn’t even that hard to do.

Workflow on Any Platform

cloud-128.pngDoes your business like the Cloud or do you prefer On-Premise systems where you can control security, access to data etc.?

Do you prefer Linux, Windows or some other flavor of server? Authenticate using Active Directory, Google, or some other LDAP server? Do users prefer Chrome or Firefox or Internet Explorer? What about customers?

With frevvo you don’t have to sweat these details. If you prefer Cloud, we have you covered. frevvo Cloud runs on AWS with all the latest security patches and updates and backups and policies. It’s reliable and trustworthy and works for many customers.

Not for you? We also offer the same software On-Premise. Install it behind your firewall on the server platform of your choice. Authenticate and authorize using your preferred system. Use your preferred browser. You simply don’t need to think about these issues anymore.

Workflow for Any One

customer-focus-128.pngWho needs to use your forms and workflows? Employees? Clients? Partners? Patients? Students? The answer is everyone.

Of course, the way they use the systems, the items they have access to, the responsibilities they each have are all different and your process automation system needs to support these different modes.

Again, frevvo’s got you covered. You can route your forms and workflows to specific users, groups of users (roles) or anonymously outside your organization. These can all be determined dynamically at runtime (a common business requirement). You can control who can edit forms and flows, who can view or edit submissions, who can administer flows and a host of other items within frevvo. It’s really workflow for everyone.

Workflow with Any Data

servers-128.pngWhich systems store your business data? If you’re like most of our customers it’s often easier to ask “What don’t we have?” Data is stored in a massive variety of systems: multiple SQL databases, HR systems, Accounting systems, online Google spreadsheets, SharePoint, Google Drive, box.com, any number of document management systems and on and on and on.

Your forms and workflows are simply going to be more useful if they can interact with your data wherever it is. They’ll need to read data from these systems and probably create/update data and documents in those systems as well.

Guess what? frevvo’s pretty good at that too. Our connectors provide seamless access to business systems, databases, applications, and cloud services you use every day. In many cases, it’s through point and click wizards that are easy to use and eliminate mistakes. It’s easy to connect your workflows to the world and make life even easier for your users.

Workflow in Any Language

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What language do your users speak? Today, even small organizations are distributed all over the world. Certainly, your constituents (customers for a business, the local community for a K-12 school, parents & students worldwide for the typical University) increasingly come from diverse backgrounds and speak multiple languages.

For example, everyone’s probably familiar with school permission forms. In many U.S. communities, these forms need to be available in English and Spanish. In larger ones, there could be many more languages in the mix. For example, Los Angeles provides its material in 8 languages.

Luckily, frevvo takes care of that for you. Our forms and workflows can be easily configured for any language worldwide. Even Right-to-Left languages like Hebrew or Arabic. Those pesky Permission or Emergency Contact forms: parents can fill them out in any language and frevvo can still generate a PDF for you or save the data for you in English (or the language of your choice).

So, you see, it doesn’t matter if you’re just a few dozen people or 10,000. It doesn’t matter where you work, when you work, what language you speak or systems you use. You too can automate your workflows and reap the benefits. It’s truly workflow any_____.

frevvo is point-and-click workflow software that connects your people, data and systems. We have already helped over 750 customers transform inefficient processes into fully automated workflows. Check out our complete platform or contact us for more information.

 

 

 

Workflow Templates & Guided Tours

frevvo is very powerful form and workflow software for automating your day-to-day processes. But, we recognize that there’s a learning curve. We offer numerous forms of no-obligation help including Online Chat, Office Hours and Templates.

Templates

frevvo’s recent V7.3 Cloud release includes several pre-built workflow and form templates. When you sign in to your Cloud account, you’ll see a box at the top.

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frevvo Cloud comes with several pre-installed templates

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Click the green install button

These are pre-built form and workflow templates. You can click the More template apps green button to view all available templates. When you hover over any template, a green Install button appears. Simply click the button to install the template and you will be navigated to the Forms or Flows page for that template.

The pre-built templates are designed to let you quickly try out a workflow. They don’t apply any routing to specific users or roles so it’s easy to run the workflow for the first time.

Guided Tours

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Guided Tours help you quickly try out templates

All workflow templates come with short Guided Tours. They usually take just a few minutes and we strongly recommend you follow along the first time. When you install a template, the Guided Tour should automatically launch. It’s walk you through the application screens, how to run the workflow and finally, how to modify the workflow to add some real routing.

If the tour does not launch for some reason or if you want to re-launch it, simply click the orange Guided Tour button on any screen. The tour will begin from that point on.

We hope you’ll find these pre-built workflow Templates and Guided Tours to be helpful in evaluating frevvo. We’re here if you need help. Click the yellow Online Chat at the bottom of your screen on our website or application. You can also sign up for Office Hours or Online Group Training on our website.

Case Study: frevvo + Confluence. Integrated, Cost-effective, & Feature-rich.

This large international provider of sports betting and casino games in Europe has over 6,000 employees with branches in several countries.

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The company uses frevvo with Confluence on daily basis for a multitude of tasks from employee on-boarding to budget management to online ordering. frevvo’s Database Connector allows them to surface frevvo forms and workflows in Confluence that read/write data from their SQL database and easily create dynamic content.

frevvo integrates with our Confluence system as well as other systems without complex APIs. And the best part of all is that frevvo is very cost-effective and feature-rich compared to products that are many times the price.

Gary J.
Service Owner

The reduction of development time to build these business-critical applications has allowed them to focus on other priorities. Business users also appreciate the fact that information is easily available and they have more time to spend with customers.

Read the Case Study and learn more by visiting our website. Explore some of the examples, read customer success stories and contact us for more details.

Top 5 HR processes our customers have automated

hr-process-automation.pngThe HR Department usually has broad reach within most organizations and often deals with a high volume of processes and policies. Yet many HR specialists still routinely manage requests through email, phone calls and paper forms. In fact, 40% of their time is spent on administrative work such as entering data from one systemto another.

“Just shoot HR an email”

Employees are used to it but even for relatively small organizations, the workload on HR can quickly multiply. Automating your routine HR processes makes a huge difference. Systems like Workday and PeopleSoft have specific HR workflows but they’re extremely expensive and are hard to fit to your business needs – implementations routinely run into 7 figures.

Many of our customers have successfully automated their HR processes literally in a matter of days at a tiny fraction of those costs. The forms and workflows exactly fit their business requirements and are easy to design/customize using our browser-based designers. Here are 5 common HR processes that we see customers automating.

hr-processes1. Employee On-boarding & Off-boarding

Ensure that your new employees go through a consistent on-boarding experience. Collect accurate information with online forms that perform validation. Employees need to enter data just once and sign just once. Automatically generate Government PDFs like a Federal W-4. Notify relevant departments such as I.T. (procure a smartphone or laptop, access to network drives).

2. Vacation Request

Reduce administrative overhead, ensure regulatory noncompliance and prevent lost productivity due to unscheduled absences. Accurately capture approvals and dates for leave requests with complete, traceable documentation.

3. Travel Expense Report

The most painful part of business travel for many employees. Avoid the usual to-and-fro emails between employees and managers for pre-authorization of travel and expense reconciliation. Capture approvals and expense quickly and accurately using an online workflow even on-the-go on a mobile device.

4. Time Sheet Tracking

Managers typically spend several hours per week sorting through employee time sheets. Using email for this process is guaranteed to be frustrating for everyone concerned – a slow, arduous, error-prone process that’s impossible to track. Automate this process to ensure accurate fully-validated time sheets that just work.

5. Annual Performance Review

Streamline the usual Word documents or Excel spreadsheets with an automated performance review process. Reduce completion time, ensure accuracy and consistency, integrate electronic signatures and let employees see where they are in the process. Ensure compliance with your organization’s HR policies.

These 5 HR processes are just the tip of the iceberg. There are dozens more from Employee Status Change to Benefits Enrollment to Change of Personal Information, Hiring & Recruiting, Absence Records and many others.

Try frevvo’s Cloud Workflow for HR free for 30 days. There’s nothing to install, we take care of security, uptime and performance. Your system will automatically work on all devices and we offer lots of build-in guidance as well as many forms of no-obligation help.

Contact us to schedule a customized demo and to learn more.