Okay! So we’re up to part four of process mapping remotely with your team; who has been scattered to the four winds due to COVID-19.
We’ve discussed the first steps of mapping:
- Identify the gaps in your process
- Understand your voice of customer
- Figure out the boundaries of the process
- Determine your sequence steps
So the next stage you need to look at with your team is drawing the basic chart of your process map. You would usually do this in the form of a swimlane-type chart. Keep in mind, that the initial stages of the production of your process map could get quite confusing and boring for everybody in an online video call. If you’ve done your online ‘Post-It Note’ session, it may be worth creating the process map offline prior to holding a virtual team meeting using your preferred platform for video conferencing calls, such as WebEx or Zoom.
To build my final process map I use a web-based application called Lucidchart. It’s really good! It operates with the simplicity of using Visio but with a whole bunch of extra functionality, so I really like it. Not only can your team collaborate on it, but it’s a great place to share your process maps from as it’s cloud-based.
Once you have the initial chart of your process prepared, you’re ready to present it to the team using a video conferencing call. Now you can take the time to walk through the map. Use the comment functions in the video to moderate discussion, collect the team’s comments, then walk through it and fine-tune it. Again, the collaboration tools, such as sharing functions in something like Lucidchart would be suitable to help fine-tune your map. Note: make sure you preface any presentation of a process map to your team as a working draft – you may have created errors or misinterpreted the team’s previous work, so be prepared to modify the maps and be conscious that sometimes teams get fairly protective of their process. This is a good thing, it means they are engaged and interested in the right result!
So! It’s really important to note that you can’t just disappear into a room with a team and appear 2 hours later with a process map. You’re all working remotely! These new ways of working mean we need to be efficient with our time, and be clear and focused on the task at hand. This method of producing your business’ process maps should form over several sessions of very focused work.
Process mapping remotely has the potential to generate some of your highest quality work. Happy mapping!
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