Steps and tips for designing effective guided workflows (2023)

While the term "workflow" may not sound exciting, it serves as the basis for everything we do. A workflow consists of a sequence of tasks required to achieve a specific goal. From getting ready to work to completing work projects, we rely on workflows to help us get things done efficiently and effectively.

For example, a workflow for a writer might include researching, outlining, editing, revising, and editing. A chef's workflow can include planning the menu, ordering ingredients, preparing, cooking, and serving.

In a contact center, workflows are especially important to help agents handle customer inquiries with speed, accuracy, and consistency.Guided workflowsinclude the use of technology to automate certain tasks and provide agents with step-by-step guidance on how to handle customer inquiries. It enables agents to perform at their best from day one. They no longer have to waste time looking for answers and workflows in different placesknowledge basenor do they have to worry about what step to take next.

Here are some of the benefits of guided workflows:

  • Accelerate the training and onboarding of new agents

  • Reducing the number of errors resulting from manual workflow management

  • Increased consistency and efficiency in service delivery

  • Increased agent credibility and adherence to compliance standards

As automated workflows provide agents with valuable information, promote consistency and increase their confidence, it has become a widely adopted strategy in contact centers. Gartner predicts that global spending on process automation will increase to approx$3.4 billionin 2023, indicating an expected increase of 17.5% from 2022.

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However, creating effective guided workflows is not a one-time task. It requires defining specific goals, mapping the process, and testing and refining the workflow to ensure its effectiveness.

In this blog, we will look at the key steps involved in designing an effective guided workflow for a contact center. We will also provide tips and tricks to help you create a workflow that canimprove agent productivity, reduce waiting times and increase overall customer satisfaction. So let's dive in!

Identify the processes

To design effective guided workflows, you need to start by identifying the specific processes you want to automate for your agents. Each industry and department has its own unique set of challenges and opportunities that require tailored workflows to be effective.

For example, in the banking industry, a common workflow that can be automated is the process of blocking a lost or stolen credit card. By creating a form for agents to verify user data, you can streamline the ireduce the time and effort required to handle customer inquiries.

Similarly, in the healthcare industry, you can design a guided workflow for booking appointments or scheduling examinations. This can help contact center agents reduce wait times and improve their service by providing a seamless and efficient appointment scheduling process.

There are various ways to specify which topics/features should be upgraded to a guided workflow for agents. Here are some examples:

  • Take a look at the most commonly used manual functions:Identify the most repetitive manual functions and develop guided workflows. These could be tasks like sending emails, canceling orders, updating CRM fields, or scheduling events.

  • Deal with the most in-demand topics:Identify topics where customers often ask for help and develop workflows to help agents handle those queries efficiently.

  • Tackle the toughest topics:Identify the topics your agents struggle with the most and consider creating guided workflows to give them step-by-step guidance and improve their success rates.

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Once you have a good understanding of your goals, you can start designing a customized workflow to achieve them.

Identify decision points

Decision points are areas of the workflow where employees must make a decision or take action based on the information they receive. For example, when a customer contacts a customer service representative about a problem, the representative may have to decide whether to escalate the problem to a supervisor or handle it themselves.

Similarly, in the case of e-commerce, a customer's contact with a customer service representative requesting the return of a product can be a decision-making point. The representative would have to decide whether to approve or reject the return based on the company's return policy. If the return is approved, a representative will need to guide the customer through the return process.

By identifying these decision points, the company can create branching logic within a guided workflow. Logic can be designed to direct the representative to the appropriate form or script to guide them through the decision making process. This ensures that the client's request is handled efficiently and the representative follows a standard process.

Plan your process

Once you have identified the processes and decision points for guided workflows, the next step is to create an end-to-end workflow to guide your agents through the process. Process mapping involves dividing the workflow into a series of steps, from the initial inquiry to the final resolution of the customer's problem. Each step in the process should be identified, such as verifying customer information, accessing relevant databases, and providing a solution or solution.

A guided workflow can be designed to guide the agent through the troubleshooting process, providing scripted answers, visual aids such as an image, diagrams, and automated data search to help them solve the problem efficiently.

For example, in a healthcare facility, the workflow for scheduling a patient's visit may include several steps, such as verifying insurance information, checking physician availability, and booking an appointment. By mapping each step of the process, the healthcare professional can identify any bottlenecks or inefficiencies and make necessary adjustments to improve the overall efficiency of the workflow.

To ensure guided workflows are effective, it's important to keep them simple and easy to understand. Here are some tips for creating guided workflows:

  • Focus on building workflows for your most impactful content, rather than trying to create one for everything.

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  • When creating a workflow, reduce the required steps and focus on the task at hand.

  • Create a direct path from start to finish without adding tangents or redundant steps.

  • Try to keep each step simple and clear, preferably with less than 5 tasks or instructions to start with.

  • Use images to visually guide readers through the path, making it easier to follow and understand.

  • Create pre-filled forms, templates, and scripts to guide agents through your workflow more efficiently.

Steps and tips for designing effective guided workflows (1)

Map intent with workflows

Intent mapping with guided workflows involves identifying different types of customer inquiries and matching them with the appropriate workflow. This allows the system to suggest the most appropriate workflows to agents based on the customer's query, helping them resolve the query quickly and efficiently.

Intent refers to the specific purpose or purpose behind the customer's inquiry. For example, a customer may contact a company to inquire about a product, report a problem, or request technical support. The system can use natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning algorithms to identify the intent behind the customer's inquiry and suggest the appropriate workflow to the agent.

It not only helpsimprove the speed and accuracy of the customer service processbut also allows agents to focus on more complex queries that require human intervention.

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Test, monitor and improve

Finally, it's important to test and refine your guided workflow to make sure it works effectively. Monitor workflow and collect employee feedback to identify areas for improvement.

One way to test a guided workflow is to run a pilot program with a small group of agents. This allows you to test your workflow in a controlled environment and gather feedback from agents before deploying it to your entire team.

You can also monitor performance metrics such as call resolution time,customer satisfaction ratingsand agent productivity to determine workflow effectiveness. For example, if the average handling time is longer than expected, the workflow can be changed to reduce the number of steps or automate some tasks toincrease efficiency.

Based on the collected feedback and measured results, make the necessary changes to the workflow to improve its performance. This may include updating response scripts, adding new decision points, or improving the automation process.

Last word

In conclusion, designing effective guided workflows requires a deep understanding of the problem you want to solve. It is worth remembering that this is not a one-time activity. Continuous monitoring, feedback and improvement are essential for the workflow to remain effective and meet the changing needs of the company and its customers.

ByWorkflows powered by Sprinklr, contact center managers can easily create, view and manage workflows that their agents can access through a self-service interface. The platform makes it easy to create new workflows and make improvements to existing ones without any coding knowledge.

On the other hand, by simplifying the agent's experience with a clear sequence of steps to follow, guided workflows help agents navigate the various call and chat flows. Step-by-step workflows allow agents to focus on delivering exceptional care, while integrated omni search seamlessly combines knowledge base content and guided workflows into one easy-to-use search tool.

So don't hesitateget to know this powerful tooland take contact center operations to the next level.


What is the first step in the workflow design process? ›

As you approach your workflow design, the first step is identifying why you need it. Like any journey, it starts at the beginning. When we talk about workflow design, we're talking about visualizing a specific process. The first step is structuring your process, starting with a clear opening and closing.

How do you create an efficient workflow? ›

Workflow Efficiency Tips
  1. Analyze Your Current Processes. ...
  2. Prioritize Projects Based on Importance. ...
  3. Implement Proper Training. ...
  4. Organize Efficiently. ...
  5. Schedule People to Specific Tasks. ...
  6. Minimize Unnecessary Interruptions. ...
  7. Optimize Communications. ...
  8. Put Effective Budgets in Place.
Feb 16, 2023

How do you create a workflow design? ›

Follow the below-mentioned steps to design a workflow:
  1. Outline your tasks that should be completed.
  2. Identify your resources (input and output)
  3. Evaluate sub-workflows involved.
  4. Find out who is accountable for each step and assign roles.
  5. Create a workflow diagram to map out the process.
  6. Implement automation wherever needed.

What is a guided workflow? ›

Guided Workflow is a capability of the Fusion Framework System™ that leads users through long sequences of activities so they complete their tasks in a timely manner without getting lost.

What are the 5 stages of workflow? ›

Normally we go through a five-stages workflow method to deal with our work. We (1) capture things that catch our attention, we (2) clarify what they mean and we (3) organize the results, which we (4) reflect on frequently to choose which thing to (5) engage with next.

What is step 7 in basic steps of design process? ›

Step 7: Improve

Prototypes are built quickly for a reason. Chances are that you will create a few of them while you perfect the design. Step seven is not so much a step as it is backtracking to the planning phase and determining what should be changed in your design, building a new prototype, and testing again.

What 4 things does effective workflow include? ›

4 Tips for Creating an Effective Workflow Model
  • Start By Brainstorming. ...
  • Challenge the Results of Your Brainstorming. ...
  • Determine if Some Processes Can Take Place in Parallel. ...
  • Define Roles and Responsibilities Clearly.
Nov 9, 2018

What are 3 basic workflow management practices? ›

Process mapping, task management, and performance tracking are three basic workflow management practices.

What are the key areas of a workflow design? ›

The 3 main components of workflow design are input, transformation, and output.

What is a workflow design pattern? ›

Workflow patterns are concepts of economised development. Their usage should follow strategies of simplifying maintenance and reducing modelling work. Workflow is performed in real time. The mechanisms of control must support the typical pace of work. Design patterns must delay execution of workflow.

What are the four types of workflow actions? ›

There are four different Rule Actions allowed in Workflow Rules:
  • Create a Task.
  • Send an Email Alert.
  • Send an Outbound Message.
  • Update a Record.
Jan 2, 2020

What are the stages of workflow? ›

Workflows encompasses the three main stages of the modeling process: pre-processing of data, model fitting, and post-processing of results.

What are the 4 D's for managing workflow? ›

The 4 Ds are: Do, Defer (Delay), Delegate, and Delete (Drop). Placing a task or project into one of these categories helps you manage your limited time more effectively and stay focused on what matters most to you.

What are the basic components of workflow? ›

Workflow Process Components Overview
  • Activity– Represents a single, logical step in the process.
  • Action– Defines how an activity is accomplished. ...
  • Transition– Defines the movement from one activity to the next.
  • Split– Defines the movement from a single activity to more than one activity.

What is workflow technique? ›

Workflow is the series of activities that are necessary to complete a task. Each step in a workflow has a specific step before it and a specific step after it, with the exception of the first and last steps. In a linear workflow, an outside event usually initiates the first step.

What are the 11 steps in the design process? ›

Stages in the Design Process
  • Analyze the situation. Before beginning the design, sort out what problem you are trying to address.
  • Write a brief. ...
  • Research the problem. ...
  • Write a specification. ...
  • Work out possible solutions. ...
  • Select a preferred solution. ...
  • Prepare working drawings and plan ahead. ...
  • Construct a prototype.

What are the 9 steps of the design process? ›

  • Identify the Problem.
  • Do Research.
  • Develop Possible Solutions.
  • Choose One Solution.
  • Design and Construct a Prototype.
  • Test the Prototype.
  • Communicate Results.
  • Evaluate and Redesign.

What is step 8 of the design process? ›

The Engineering Design Process is the way in which engineers solve problems and construct something. The process is split down into eight steps: Ask it, Research it, Plan it, Create it, Test it, Improve it, Share it and Review it.

What are the steps of workflow? ›

Steps to Create a Workflow Online
  • Identify your resources.
  • List out the tasks that should be accomplished.
  • Find out who is accountable for each step and assign roles.
  • Create a workflow diagram to visualize the process.
  • Test the workflow you created.
  • Train your team on the new workflow.
  • Deploy the new workflow.

What is the first step in workflow analysis? ›

There are five steps to analyzing workflows. First, identify the workflows in question, and then collect data about them. Next, examine that data, and then make changes to problem areas. Finally, create a schedule to manage and adjust these workflows as needed.

What are the first 4 steps of the design process? ›

There are several models that systematize the design thinking process. In the online course Design Thinking and Innovation, Harvard Business School Dean Srikant Datar leverages a four-stage framework: clarify, ideate, develop, and implement.

What are the three key steps in conducting a workflow analysis? ›

Here are a few steps to help you do your own workflow analysis.
  • Step 1: Collect Hard Data. Take a report of the workflow you want to examine. ...
  • Step 2: Collect Soft Data. For workflow analysis, just numbers aren't enough. ...
  • Step 3: Ask the Hard Questions. ...
  • Step 4: Implement the Changes and Follow Up.
Feb 17, 2023

What 3 steps are included in a basic project workflow? ›

Step-by-step project management workflow guide
  • Step 1: Create a list of jobs to be done. ...
  • Step 2: Identify what tools are needed to execute tasks. ...
  • Step 3: Delegate tasks and establish roles. ...
  • Step 4: Test and improve workflow over time.
Apr 1, 2022


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