The final chapter of our guide is focused on increasing your company's productivity even further.
We'll provide a few tips, tricks and in-depth content about our advanced features. This chapter's sections are:
- Why become a Pipefy expert?
- Using Pipefy across your company's teams
- Running your company's entire operation on Pipefy
Why become a Pipefy expert?
Efficiency, effectiveness and productivity
Before we move on to tips and explaining the value of our advanced features, we thought about sharing a few words on the direct relation and the differences between efficiency, effectiveness and productivity.
- Efficiency is defined as the comparison between what is actually produced/ performed with what could be achieved with the same amount of resources (money, time, labor, etc.) in an ideal environment. A process is efficient if it produces what's expected while consuming relatively few resources. Efficiency relates to the road towards your final destination. The faster you get there or the less gas you consume, the more efficient you are.
- Effectiveness relates to output. While efficiency means "doing the thing right," effectiveness means "doing the right thing." It can be determined by comparing actual and potential results. Using the same metaphor, effectiveness relates to the final destination, instead of the road towards it.
- Productivity is a combination of efficiency and effectiveness. It's about delivering a product that's within the quality expectations while consuming a reasonable amount of resources. You can assess productivity by analyzing the quality of the output (effectiveness) and the amount of input (efficiency) it took to produce it. If you're able to achieve more with less effort, your productivity has increased.
How to measure your process and increase productivity?
Robert S. Kaplan once said ”If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it”. When it come to processes, he couldn’t be more precise.
Running a process is a lot like running an engine. From the moment it’s inside the car what matters is finding out whether it works the way it's supposed to.
These are a few relevant information you should collect to analyze your engine's performance:
- Gas intake per mile
- Horse power
- Oil and water levels
- Total mileage
- Noise level
To find out if the engine is running as it should, picture yourself on the driver seat of a car that has your engine.
Now imagine how it would feel like if you were deprived of all senses: you can't hear if the engine is running, you don't know how much gas you have left or how fast you’re going.
Managing a process without measuring it is the same thing. There are a few variables you absolutely need to measure to be able to properly analyze your process' performance and productivity.
How to measure your process?
It takes a couple of months of running a process and gathering data to have enough information to begin analyzing its productivity and efficiency.
Only after you're done with that initial analysis you’ll be able to think of ways to make your process more competitive.
To make it easier to understand, think of your process as an equation:
Output variables (Y variables)
Every process serves a purpose: guiding people (your team) towards achieving a goal (output). How could you possibly know if you've achieved that output without measuring it?
Output variables are normally represented by profit, amount of units produced, amount of new accounts, amount of helpdesk tickets assisted, etc.
Process execution variables (X variables)
The Y variables are your ultimate goal. They're the reason why you execute your process. The problem is that you can’t affect them directly. They’re merely the output, a representation of what happened along the process.
Measuring your process’ end result and nothing else would be like staring at the end of a production line. You can see the pieces coming out but you can’t analyze the factors that affect that end result.
To make sure that the result meets your expectations you need to manage all the elements that may affect that result.
Properly monitoring and managing the process execution variables helps you predict its output. When you interfere with the X variables you’ll likely impact the Y result.
If you keep close track of all the variables that affect your output directly, the end result will gradually become predictable.
Pipefy across teams
Over the previous chapters we focused primarily on how to use Pipefy within teams and departments.
This section will zoom out even further and show you how you can use Pipefy across teams and departments to integrate them.
This is the first step towards centralizing your processes and running your entire operation on Pipefy.
Cross-team communication and collaboration
Communication, both within teams/departments and across them helps your organization stay efficient and productive.
Lack of communication, on the other hand, can lead to a series of problems, such as:
- Lack of trust (people don't trust that other teams provide them with accurate information so they double check it with a third team, wasting time and showing that they don't trust all teams equally);
- Bad customer service (when teams don't communicate well, issues don't get forwarded to the right team in time, affecting overall customer satisfaction).
Overall: losses in efficiency and, therefore, productivity. Let’s give negativity a cold shoulder and start setting up Pipefy to prevent all of this from happening!
Here’s a quick overview of the features Pipefy offers that help enhance cross-team/department communication and collaboration!
The automations feature enables you to automatically trigger an action (such as move or create a card) when an event happens (such as create a new card or move an existing one).
You can also set up conditions so that the automation will only be triggered when the event meets the specified criteria.
Automations work according to an event > action logic: when event X happens, action Y will occur automatically.
This feature is the best way to make sure information is transmitted seamlessly from one team's process to another whenever an activity demands collaboration.
Connections are the solution for your need to integrate your company’s processes without having to share information outside your pipes.
This feature is especially useful if you have a process that demands collaboration from other teams/processes.
It also allows you to break down major activities into smaller steps creating sub-tasks (children cards) from a parent card.
The cards created using a connection will be connected, which makes for easy information sharing among teams.
Your pipe’s reports are all your pipe’s information (the data you’ve added to each card in each phase’s fields) shown to you in a customizable spreadsheet format.
The advanced reports enable you to filter and combine your processes’ data to create and save powerful reports that'll only display the information you want to see.
You also have the option of creating formulas to calculate minimum, maximum or average values of number type fields, such as average deal value on your sales pipeline.
You can easily export the report's information in a spreadsheet format (.csv) so you can further explore and analyze the data.
The reports can help you improve your processes by analyzing productivity, time spent in each phase, etc.
These are a few practical examples of the possibilities the reports feature offers:
1. When managing a sales pipeline you might be interested in:
- The amount of deals higher than $2000 that one of your sales reps closed over the past year;
- The total amount of one of each rep's deals over the past 6 months;
- The amount of proposals your reps have sent over the last two months;
- How fast deals are closed.
2. When managing your team's tasks in a team task management pipe you can:
- Generate a report that will show you the amount of cards that are labelled as high priority and assigned to a specific team member;
- Track the amount of tasks finished over the past period.
Zapier allows you to integrate Pipefy with over 750 web applications. You can integrate using Pipefy as:
- An event that triggers an action in another app of your choosing;
- An action triggered by an event that happened in another app.
Check out these pre-designed integration suggestions:
If you repeat the same task on a daily, weekly or monthly basis, it'd be a waste of your time to have to manually create a new card for it every time.
Set up this integration so that a new card will be created for you on a pipe of your choosing at the frequency you determined.
I could bet lot of great information flows through your team's Slack chat rooms. Are you storing all the gems?
Zapier can help with that. You can set up an integration so that, whenever you star a message on Slack, it will automatically create a card on a pipe on Pipefy.
This helps create a perfect record or action item without even having to open a new window.
The integration can also work the other way around. You can set up another integration so that Slack notifies you (on a slack channel or in a direct message) every time a new card is created, moved, marked as done or becomes late/expired.
Most companies deal with sensitive information they wouldn't want all departments to be able to access freely.
Pipefy allows you create 'private pipes' so that only invited users will be able to access it. Do note that the company admin has access to all pipes, whether they're public or private.
Running your company's entire operation on Pipefy!
In the previous section we went over some of the features that help increase cross-team communication. That was the first step towards centralizing your company's operation on Pipefy.
In this section, we'll explore some of the processes you can manage all across your company.
Add company-wide processes
You’ve already came across Pipefy's template store a few times on the previous chapters of this guide.
It's always better to be safe than sorry, so we'll say it once more: we have a free template store that offers a wide variety of pre-designed process templates.
You can quickly find, import and tailor our existing templates to fit your company’s needs.
Check out a quick overview of some of the most popular processes companies of all types and sizes can benefit from:
1. Reimbursement requests
Pipefy’s free expense reimbursement template was designed to simplify your team’s expense reporting. It helps centralize all requests in a single platform and coordinate your company's reimbursements.
2. Vacation requests
Pipefy’s vacation requests template is a simplified process designed to create a unique channel for all your company’s teams holiday, day off and vacation requests.
3. Collaborative Idea Management
Pipefy’s collaborative idea management template was specially developed for companies that wish to implement an innovative culture among their staff and empower team members to submit new ideas for all company areas.
Pipefy’s sprint template helps your company's teams analyze and solve even the most challenging issues. With focus and innovative ideas, this iterative management method coined by Jake Knapp gives problem solving an entirely new meaning!
5. Design thinking
Pipefy’s design thinking template is ideal for creating innovative strategies, understanding your customers and solving day-to-day problems in a dynamic way.
Want to know more about Design Thinking? Lucky for you we wrote a blogpost on it!
Before we wrap up our guide, there are a few final points we'd like to cover.
Anything else you need
Our complete knowledge base was designed to provide you all the information you may need when using Pipefy.
We divided it into three main sections to make it easier for you to work with it:
The fundamentals section provides all the information you need for a quick start. It contains information about user settings, our payment policy and brief explanations of Pipefy's basic concepts.
Pipefy's fundamentals articles are especially useful for users that have just started using Pipefy.
The basic features section focuses on teaching users how to setup a process on Pipefy. It's mostly about ‘how to’ instead of ‘what is’.
The final step focuses on how Pipefy's advanced features relate directly to the basic setup. What is the value of each of these features for your processes?
Bonus! Advanced uses of Pipefy
Within the advanced features you'll find the exclusive "advanced uses of Pipefy" section.
It teaches you all about how to combine Pipefy's advanced features (such as automations, connections and database) to create powerful resources such as:
Pipefy's blog is a large database of content produced focused on your needs. We've divided into categories you can access on the header or use the search box to find content that relates to your specific needs.
The blog is also the channel we use to spread the word every time we have exciting news, new features and all sorts of Pipefy-related news.
Companies like Budweiser, Heinz and Burger King have strong philosophies and management methods focused on high efficiency. Their secret is very simple:
Strong businesses have strong processes.
To help you find the path to a strong execution, Pipefy’s CEO Alessio Alionço wrote a comprehensive guide covering all the steps from organizing your business to establishing and measuring strong processes.
The ebook is free, all you have to do is click here and fill in the requested information.
We're here for you!
Do you have a question? Would you like to report a problem, bug, or unusual software behavior? Would you like to make a compliment, complaint or give us some feedback?
Feel free to reach out to our customer success team at all times by clicking the chat button in the upper right corner of your screen. Type your question and we'll get back to you as soon as we can.
Thank you for taking the time to read the complete guide to Pipefy. By now you should already know everything you need to use Pipefy like a pro, congrats!
If there's anything else you need, you now know where to find us 😉 .