This is the third post of the “Why You Should Run Your Business Online” series. If you have not yet read the previous posts, head back to the beginning to catch up.
At the end of the previous post in this series, I promised you an answer to the question:
“Why doesn’t Sally just cut out the meeting and use e-mail to send the press release versions back-and-forth with her clients?! She would get the two results you mention above without having to learn an extra application or spend any time or money!”
The answer is a powerful one: process management!
Process Management. Really?
We’re now getting to one of the most exciting advantages of running your business using the cloud and SAAS and it’s all thanks to the second “Value Component” of the “Running Your Business Online Value Statement”:
Value Component 2: Process Management
Online software, tools and sites offer you tools and features to manage your processes.
As stated in the “Running Your Business Online Value Statement”, the cloud and SAAS “enable you to change the way you get things done in ways that were not previously possible”.
Sally’s new online tool has helped her redefine the press release approval process for her firm and its clients. It did this by enabling her to automate parts of the process.
However, the benefits do not stop there.
She Gets A Whole Toolbox
Sally’s new software has helped her streamline the press release approval process. Not only was she able to automate certain steps (such as receiving an e-mail when a certain step occurs), but there are more features that make the whole process run much more smoothly:
- A versioning system that stores every version of the press release as it goes through the approval process. This allows Sally and her clients to track changes or even revert back to an earlier version of a document.
- A tracking system that allows Sally to see who made what changes to which documents.
- A document editing system which allows users to add comments and even to draw on document to emphasize points.
These tools are very powerful and really helped make Sally’s press release approval process much less of a burden on her time.
Centralization Is Key
Perhaps the biggest benefit of using a cloud solution however, is the centralization of the press release approval process.
This is were it gets interesting!
Because every press release approval now happens within the same system, Sally can manage this aspect of her business in a much more powerful way than she could via e-mail.
- A dashboard that allows Sally to see the status of all her open approvals. She can see who has reviewed and commented and who has not. This is especially helpful when she has multiple approvers for one press release. It is an at-a-glance way for her to manage the approval process across all her clients.
- Centralized storage: each version of each press release resides in a central spot. There is no confusion around who is working with which version of a release because it is all automatically captured and tracked for Sally and her clients by the online application as opposed to existing in multiple e-mails on multiple people’s computers.
And though Sally has many clients, centralization poses no problem since she can set up separate client accounts (and separate accounts for users within each client) so that no client can see the other client’s materials within the online system.
E-mail was not the right tool for Sally’s press release approval process because it did not meet, or only partially met, her need which was to save as much time and effort as possible so she could focus on other tasks like delighting her customers and making more sales.
Next up, the 3rd value component and more examples of the advantages of running your business online.