Undertaking a Workflow (Job) Analysis
A workflow (job) analysis is the process of identifying what tasks, activities and processes take place in order to achieve outputs. This analysis aims to uncover any inefficiencies, duplication/repetition or barriers in process, function or task to determine how an organisation can be more effective and productive.
A workflow analysis is achieved through identifying positions which would give the highest potential for refinement and the subsequent processes requiring scrutiny. The success in conducting a workflow analysis resides in the ability to collect accurate and detailed information on critical positions.
A workflow analysis can be undertaken to achieve a number of critical business outcomes. The objective will determine the required level and type of analysis.
- Change in outputs
- Improved efficiency in processes and procedures
- Minimising duplication
- Clarifying accountability and delegations
- Reduced budget (therefore impacting number of roles within an organisation structure)
- Remote workforce optimisation and productivity
Analysis and Critical Thinking Process
Workflow and job analysis provides insight into the impact certain positions have on strategic imperatives, including; Organisational Strategy / Culture Project outputs / Workforce Strategy / Business imperatives (performance and community). The process leads to informed decisions on whether outputs of positions align with the corporate objectives and which functions can be changed with the best possible outcomes and what systems are needed to produce the required outcomes.
Identifying positions that contribute the most to achieving a particular outcome and which functions have the highest potential for re-engineering and refinement are key determining factors of design.
Below is a series of initial critical thinking and questions to inform design outcomes.
- What is the required outcome of certain position/s? If outcomes are not being achieved, Why not? If they are being achieved we need to explore How, through What and by Whom? Additionally, are there any offsets or negative impacts around how outcomes are currently achieved?
- What actual activities and tasks take place? What skills and qualifications do staff require?
- What systems and processes are being used? What behaviours are being displayed?
- Who else is involved in the process and why? What value do others bring to the process?
- What are some of the barriers in the process? Ambiguities? Does the system assist the process effectively? Does the delegations process enable a smooth transition and clarity of expectations for each person involved? Are there better ways of operating? Is there any duplication in the process? What is the level of skill required in the role? For example if a Field Worker is to provide spatial data to the spatial team how does the current process enable this to take place? Does the system support the Field Worker or is the process time consuming? If so why? Why was this arrangement set up in the first place? What legal frameworks or governance applies to the decision to have Field Workers performing spatial duties? What are some other options for achieving the same output?
The most effective methods to conduct a workflow analysis include:
- Job and Workflow Analysis Questionnaire (please contact us if you require a sample copy)
- One to one interview and feedback sessions – These provide candid conversations, so consider who is best to be involved and who is open to change and knowledgeable about the process? Who will not be self-serving?
- Observations Note: line of questioning should always be consistent with each job.
Contact us if you require support in undertaking a similar project within your organisation.
You can also register your interest in attending our 2 day program on Restructuring Organisations – a process of design and change for more tools and templates!