How to Build the Perfect Process on KnowHow
One of the best things you can give your employees is a clear roadmap to accomplishing their best work. Doing so gives you confidence that your team is working in the right direction, while also empowering them, knowing that they’re having a tangible impact in their jobs.
This is why we built KnowHow: to help managers equip their employees with everything they need in order to succeed at work.
In this blog article, I’ll detail how to make the most of KnowHow’s “create process” tool. The key to the right work being done is clear, actionable guidance in easy digestible steps. With KnowHow, giving every employee a step-by-step guide to accomplish the task at hand is one of the best ways you can improve their work, and yours!
Create a Title and Description
The Right Title
In productivity philosophy, the best name for a task is one that describes what the end state (or promised land) will be, once this task has been accomplished. These almost always start with verbs, such as Run a UX Testing Session, or Report Monthly Blog Analytics. Once a team member has completed this process, they will have successfully ran a UX testing session or reported the monthly blog analytics. Conversely, a name like Blog Analytics is much less effective.
Ex: Update content calendar for the next month
Ex: Send an update e-mail to new users
Ex: Close store at the end of the night
Choosing an Image
When we interviewed managers and employees while building KnowHow, they told us that, when searching for the right information, they often look for visual cues (as opposed to reading the text of every process). For this reason, including a thumbnail that accurately reflects the subject material is critical. If you don’t have any available, websites such as Unsplash or Freepik have great, high-quality stock images available for you to use for free. If you want to add your own custom branding onto the image, here is a template we built for you.
Description (What’s Your Why?)
Another insight we unlocked during our interviews with managers was that most of the time, employees didn’t follow the right process because they didn’t know what that process was. However, equally vital was employees understanding why this process was important to follow.
The description is your opportunity in a paragraph or two to explain to your team members why this process is worth following, or any additional details they’ll need before they get started. Take advantage of this space to not only equip your team with the how, but also ensuring they’re bought into the why.
This is the meat and potatoes of process building: breaking down the process into clear, actionable steps that your team can follow and implement.
A few best practices before we go into the details on everything you can do on KnowHow:
- Break down steps to the smallest size possible. Mentally, it’s far easier to begin work on a task that is clearly understandable and seems accomplishable
- Don’t assume knowledge. Ideally, your process is the only thing an employee would need in order to successfully complete a task, so all details necessary for completion should be included
- Like the process name, every task name should start with a verb
Title Your Task
This should be fairly self-explanatory, no need to go into greater detail. Make it clear and actionable. See below for examples.
Ex. Lock the doors at 9pm
Ex. Attach files to e-mail and click ‘send’
Ex. Log into Hubspot
Describe How to Complete Your Task
You’ve just titled your task with an action item - this is where you unpack how they can accomplish that action item. For example, if the task is “Download PostSQL”, you would include information about where they could download PostSQL, or any additional info they would need in order to do so.
We’ve added the ability for markup text, meaning you can bold, add bullet points or lists, and a variety of other options for you to emphasize the points you need as you equip your employees.
With the Add URL function, you can directly link to any websites (such as, PostSQL’s website), or cloud documents hosted in places like Google Drive or Dropbox (among others). Additionally, KnowHow automatically embeds YouTube or Loom videos. With Loom, you can film a short video instruction for your co-workers and then easily embed it into a KnowHow process.
Time to Complete
This field is optional, and allows you to give your co-workers an accurate understanding of how long it will take for them to complete a specific task. This could give them the extra motivation they need to get started, knowing that a specific process could hypothetically take less than a half an hour from start to finish!
Finally, the last step is to make it easier for your team to find your process. Tags help add keywords to your process, ensuring that whatever it is that your employees are searching for, finding the right information is only a few seconds away. We’ve made it easy to standardize your tags across the organization by suggesting common tags your company with our auto-complete feature. This allows you to easily group your teams’ processes together if they are related to the same topic.
And That’s It!
A well-built process saves you more and more time the longer it exists. By taking the time to clearly define what will be accomplished, and detailing exactly how to get there, you’ll give your employees the ability to work with confidence, and you’ll have more of your own time available to work “on the business”, as opposed to “in the business”.
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