New Hires? Here’s How to Introduce Them to the World of Workflow Automation

If your company’s workflow thrives in the culture of automation, chances are you want new hires to jump right into it. But what if they’ve never automated a process before?

Advanced technology can be overwhelming, but workflow automation need not be.

Show a new hire how workflow automation will benefit their role by choosing the right workflow and walking them through the automation process. They will quickly see that you are providing them with simple tools to succeed in your workplace.

Below are some steps to introducing workflow automation to your new employees:

1.  Explain the General Concept of Workflow Automation

New hires may have never heard the words “workflow automation” before. Break it down for them.

A workflow is a series of related steps necessary to complete an assignment. It moves work from one stage to another until the job is complete.

If you need to request approval to attend a conference, you should look at a calendar, select your dates, email your manager with said dates, and wait for approval. Your manager would then have to check that the conference is valid and doesn’t conflict with a work-meeting, email you back with an approval, and log the information into the calendar and database.

The automation of this request-type process would use software to input data and automate most of these steps for you.

Benefits of automation

In addition to improving collaboration and reducing errors, workflow automation uses technology to solve problems that take up valuable time. If you save an average of three minutes with each automated workflow and use about a 100 workflows a day, you could end up saving 5 hours of work per week.

2.  Set Aside Training Time for Live Demonstrations

To introduce workflow automation to a new hire, first make sure they fully understand how the manual process works. We fill out online forms every day. What happens on the back-end of these forms?

Introduce different types of workflows by creating various types of quick forms:

Demo a simple process

Using a simple process such as the conference approval request discussed above, show new hires a live demonstration by building out a map of processes that reaches a result (in this case, an email notification of approval).

Live demos prove the simplicity of a workflow in real time. Simple processes are good examples for these demos because they show how to automate workflows in a matter of minutes. They reduce work disruptions and allow employees to focus on the higher-skilled tasks they were hired to perform.

Demo a departmental process

New hires also could think of workflows in the context of the department they are joining.

Ask them about a problem or process they might need to work through every day. For marketers, it could be the creation and distribution of email campaigns. For writers, it could be the collaboration required with multiple drafts of copy.

Starting with a paper process, have your new hire work backwards from their ideal workflow to get a clear vision of what each deliverable looks like. This will help when laying the steps out using quick forms to help new hires to think of what to ask for. Then, the workflow can do anything with that inputted data. It saves time, improves collaboration and reduces error.

3.  Have New Hires Create Their Own Workflows

Workflow automation is easiest to grasp when you try it yourself.

As a final onboarding step, guide new hires through a hands-on approach. Highlight that they are the process-owner, and allow them to be creative in creating their own process.

Most importantly, be open to questions and explain that understanding workflow is a fun ongoing practice. By seeing how their process goes from being manual to automated, new hires will further enjoy work and workflow.


Click here to learn more about how workflow automation streamlines manual and traditionally paper-based processes.

And request a live demo of the Nintex Workflow Platform here!

Patrick Nguyen

Pat Nguyen is a Senior Business Analyst at Nintex. In his role, he leverages the Nintex Platform to build custom workflow solutions that solve business challenges. In his spare time, Pat enjoys exploring Seattle on his longboard. He’s a University of Notre Dame alum and a Fighting Irish fan.

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