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Exceed client expectations with effective workflow management

Updated: Oct 11, 2023

Scaling a startup requires continuous upgrades in terms of performance and customer experience. But getting your team together for a meeting is one challenge, and getting them to collaborate and produce great results is another. And gathering valuable, actionable feedback from the clientele and following through with those in the next prototype is next level stuff.


These workflow methodologies highlighted in this article can help you coordinate better collaboration sessions, produce top-notch work and create amazing experiences for your audience. Approaching your projects like a high-end business takes experience and flair. But you need not have developed world-class project management finesse to be able to improve upon the customer experience, profitability and performance once you start implementing and improvising upon these systems.



The Waterfall


The Waterfall is a sequential workflow management system where one thing happens and then the next. Each action item in the sequence is carefully planned and executed in linear progression, and attempting to reiterate the deliverables for a previous phase can prove to be an intense gamble on the ROI.

waterfall workflow project management

It flows through the phases of a project (research, strategy, design, development, and testing, for example), and every phase is completed before the next phase begins. A seemingly straightforward system, it demands the project stakeholders to document each of the processes in advance. Things can spiral out of control if the project is experimental, leading to volatility in project scope.


Thankfully, there are other methodologies we can implement to offset the possible pitfalls of the waterfall model.


Lean Workflow Management


The Lean method gets rid of redundancies, without compromising on quality. The prime focus of the lean method is efficiency in operations and effective responses to market needs. Project stakeholders might implement lean as steps to continuously improve a system's ability to deliver value for customers by eliminating waste and inefficiency.

lean methodology project management

Lean backs itself with a philosophy that can be applied to any type of business or organization. It is based on the concept that waste is the costliest part of a product or service.



There are three types of waste:


Wasted effort: The amount of time that employees spend doing work that does not add value to the company. This includes unproductive meetings and activities as well as wasted motions and steps.


Wasted material: Materials that are lost or damaged during production (e.g., tools left on the floor, excess packaging materials).


Wasted space: Space occupied by items that are no longer needed (e.g., excess inventory or excess packaging materials).





Agile


The agile system was developed to tackle the challenges of the waterfall system. Agile involves breaking down big work into smaller tasks that are carried out in sprints. The prime focus is on reevaluation and reiteration of project priorities.


This methodology is a flexible, iterative approach to software development, but it can also be implemented to design, research and copywriting projects. It allows teams to react quickly to changing market conditions and user needs. Agile methods are popular because they enable teams to move fast and test ideas early in the process.


agile project workflow management

Agile methods can be used by teams to test early and often, receive feedback early and often, which reduces the risk of wasting precious resources on features and content that aren’t as valuable as others. Agile also allows teams to adjust their design as they learn more about customers, stakeholders, and market conditions.


Scrum


A derivative of agile, it is carried out through a series of sprints. Mostly used in software development projects, the scrum method helps teams generate simple solutions to complex problems. It is a way of working that helps teams produce valuable output efficiently by avoiding unnecessary work and meeting commitments with confidence. It is a self-organizing, cross-functional team of individuals who collaborate toward a common goal.


The primary objective of Scrum is to satisfy the customers’ needs through an environment of transparency in communication, collective responsibility and continuous progress amongst the team working on a product/service.


scrum project workflow management

As with all kinds of production methodologies, teams implementing Scrum need to have a solid understanding of its core values:

  • Individuals and interactions over processes and tools

  • Working software over comprehensive documentation

  • Customer collaboration over contract negotiation

  • Responding to change over following a plan


By this point in the article, you must be asking yourself which methodology might prove to be the right way to go. The answer is ALL OF THEM. That is because a hybrid production workflow brings out the best of all worlds, and also is the most commonly used system.


Hybrid


A hybrid methodology involves combining two different methodologies or systems, such as waterfall and agile. A hybrid approach would allow for two or more models or methods to be implemented simultaneously, as long as they are applied appropriately and integrate well into the overall project scope, budget and other important parameters.

hybrid project management

Combining two or more approaches allows for more flexibility in planning and execution of projects. Projects are more efficient as they can be planned and executed according to the needs of the business, while still allowing for some flexibility in order to meet deadlines and budgets.


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