Back in the old days, we used procedures manuals for recording our systems. At the old accounting firm it was call the ‘How We Do It Here’ manual.
The documented systems came in handy. One of the most valuable was a one page 5 step process of how to reset the internet connection when it stopped working. When the internet stops working the team stops working, so this system saved us time and money.
The biggest challenge with creating systems in a business is it takes a long time. Certain individuals don’t really enjoy the tedious task of documenting each step and may not even be that good at documenting the processes clearly. Those certain individuals include the boss. A lot of business owners are ‘visual’ learners and visual explainers.
Technology has developed so that creating visual systems is easier than ever. A flip cam or iPhone is a good quality video camera or my Nikon D90 SLR Camera makes great video. Video capture software is an easy way to record systems preformed on the computer. YouTube is a readily available place to place the video and you can create a private link to the video so only those with the link can watch it.
Instead of asking the boss to document a system in a procedures manual, why not ask them to demonstrate the system record it on video? Then just upload it to YouTube and create a private link to it.
If you want to harness all the latest technology, place the link in a cloud-based program. As an example, we use Basecamp as a cloud based project management platform and we use Hootsuite to manage some of our social media efforts. Liz Grady, our Director of Digital Communication has created a ‘How we use Hootsuite’ system utilizing video capture software. She put the link in our ‘Systems’ folder in Basecamp. Now, it doesn’t matter where I am, as long as I have my iPhone and an internet connection, I can access a customized video explaining how our Hootsuite system works and why.
In summary, if you are not harnessing the power of video and the latest technology you are missing out on a very easy way to create useful business systems. Like anything new, I might take a couple attempts to get the hang of it. But if the people who need to create the systems are ‘visual’, it is the only realistic option for actually getting it done.
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