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Using Automated Workflows to Eliminate a Sea of Paperwork - Part 2

Topics: Macola 10, Distribution, Automated Workflows, Manufacturing, Automation, Lean, Professional Services

Posted on Apr 10, 2018 2:00:00 PM by James Alexakos

"Out of Office: You Can Find Me On The Beach"


Workflow Automation in Action

Welcome to part two of our blog series detailing how workflow automation can have an enormous positive impact on your business.

In the last blog, Using Automated Workflows to Eliminate a Sea of Paperwork, we talked about all of the manual, time-consuming activities we are forced to do every single day that—in the end—also take away valuable time that could be spent on our customers.

But it doesn’t have to be that way, and in this blog, we will explore how a simple workflow in your Macola ERP solution can greatly reduce the time spent on these manual, time-consuming activities.

It’s no secret that vacation is everyone's favorite time of year. Whether it is spring break, summer vacation, or the holiday season, employees need some time for rest and relaxation. If you’re like most organizations, there’s a policy that employees must follow to request time off for vacations. This policy may require email or some other written form of requests, but either way, these requests tend to be messy, slow and could easily be misplaced or mishandled. We are going to show you how a simple workflow request in Macola 10 can speed up and organize this process.

Below is a screenshot the entire workflow request that we will be showcasing for employees to utilize to request time off:

image 1 - automated workflows - part 2

As you can see, the workflow automatically has our employee, Jimmy Buffet, selected as both the person submitting the request and as the person requesting time off. It also has a mandatory field labeled "description" where he can enter a short description of his request. After he enters his description he can edit the date fields in the "Vacation Information" section to match the dates of his proposed time off. He also has a remarks box where he can enter more detailed information about his time off request. The last feature we will highlight is under the "Approve" box.  You can see that once Jimmy submits his request, it will be automatically be routed to his manager.

A workflow feature such as this ensures that all workflow requests are automatically routed to the proper person—without direct input from the creator.

Now let's take a look at the request once Jimmy has filled in the information and submitted it to his manager.

Once Jimmy clicks the "Submit" button his manager will automatically receive a notification telling him (Jimmy’s manager) that he has a request in his workflow on which he is required to take action. A feature such as this guarantees that all requests are handled in a timely manner as well as not getting lost in a stack of paperwork:

image 2 - automated workflows - part 2

Now that the request is in the manager’s workflow, you can see that some additional information has appeared. The dates that Jimmy requested now appear in the Vacation information box, and the request automatically calculates the number of days requested.

You can also see that a second "Remarks" box has appeared in which the manager, James, can use to communicate information back to Jimmy, the person submitting the request. Both users also have the option to "Timestamp" their comments which adds the user's name, the date, and time to the comment. If James approves Jimmy's request it will automatically subtract the days from his paid time off balance. If James rejects the request, an alert will automatically be sent to  Jimmy, notifying that his workflow request has been rejected. Jimmy can now open the request and read the comments as to why it was rejected.

In both scenarios, the request will forever remain in the system as a permanent record of the interaction, unless manually deleted. 

If you’re interested in learning more about Workflow Automation, tune in to part three of this series to learn about more complicated automated workflow requests, such as a purchase requisition.

If you missed part one of this Workflow Automation series, here's a link to read it:
Using Automated Workflows to Eliminate a Sea of Paperwork 


Here is a great success story of a Macola customer who received many benefits by combining automated workflows with their Macola ERP: 

G.L. Mezzetta combines Macola 10 with Automated Workflows

Learn how incorporating Macola 10's Automated Workflows into everything from notifications to approvals and requests, you can ensure that the correct person is assigned the right task without having to do any extra work in this infographic: 

automated workflows.png

Infographic: Benefits of Automated Workflows

Imagine a world without stacks of paper or unnecessary email threads, all while gaining a company-wide reduction in errors. This is what a truly lean and efficient company looks like. With Macola 10 and Automated Workflows, this can be your organization.

Learn About Automated Workflows


This is part two in a series of blog posts that dive into the world of Macola 10's automation capabilities, and how it can help your organization. If you want to learn more today about how Automated Workflows and Macola 10 can help your organization, please click here


The ERP Blog covers the impact of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), business software and accounting solutions on organizations in the manufacturing and distribution industries.

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