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Systems, Automations, and Workflows

What are systems, automations, and workflows in business?

Efficiency is key in business. As your business grows and when you’re ready to scale, there is something that must be in place: systems, automations, and workflows. Without them, you’ll be scrambling to manage more clients and more work—all with less mental clarity. Setting up your workflows before you NEED them is the ultimate step toward getting your business set up for success.

In this month’s guide:

What is the difference between systems, automations, and workflows in business?

What even is the difference between systems, automations, and workflows? Jenn shares in her article below all about the lingo you need to know. The key thing to remember is that workflows mean steps and systems mean making those steps happen. Finally, automations mean making sure those steps are happening efficiently by setting them up and letting them run. These three, when used effectively, can help your business get more (great) inquiries, sell easier, onboard quicker, and provide a seamless, consistent experience for all.

What can you systematize in business?

You can build workflows and systems for just about anything. Start with this: make a list of literally everything you do in your business. Categorize them like this: daily, monthly, for each of your services or products, and finally, yearly. From there, prioritize writing out the step-by-step process for the items you could outsource first. Here’s an example: every time you onboard a new client, they must go through an inquiry and onboarding process. Instead of having to do each of those steps by hand… write out every step you take and then consider outsourcing it to a Client Management Software for small businesses like HoneyBook. Once you have one system set up to run with ease, you’ll be finding things left and right to systematize! Check out Laura’s article and Joelle’s article for more tips on getting your CRM setup.

How can I automate my business but still keep it personal?

You can have automations set up while still remaining personal. Some CRMs allow for approval of an automated email before sending, which means you can add in personal touches regarding that specific client before hitting “send.” Building out a system for email templates to plug in personal details means that you’re letting YOU shine, while still making the process simple and painless. Plus… it means that every client gets the same communication (and consistency!) with a little something extra that stands out and shows you really care. Sasha’s article shares all about how to automate your business without losing the personal touch. And guess what, those personalizable email templates can even set client expectations and protect you from liability. Find out how from Allie in her article below.

What’s Inside

Jenn Pochobradsky

You may be wondering what client workflow automation software even is… and what it can do for you. Jenn shares about the benefits of building your own “personal secretary” and 5 steps toward saving time and propelling your business forward. They all begin with defining your own success so you know exactly what your end goal is. Check out her insights to learn the other 4 steps.

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Sarah Fite

You may think systems will change your life. But what if we told you that you may be missing out on the most life-changing, business altering systems of all. Sarah explains the difference between management and maintenance systems, why you need both, and which ones you may be forgetting about that could make major shifts in your business. Don’t let your business get run off the proverbial highway… instead get these systems set up so your biz is a well-oiled machine.

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Laura Neff

Ever thought of your workflow like a vacation? No… not just that it will allow you to take a vacation… but that it’s actually similar to the process of a vacation. Laura walks you through that mindset and what exactly makes a great workflow, plus how to build it out within your CRM. This is sure to change your thinking AND business… and get you on more vacations!

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Sasha Ruffin

If you’re ready to scale, there are a few things that must happen. One: you need to get your business automations down pat. But have you ever been concerned that an automated business and communications plan means a less personal approach to your clients? Sasha gives 4 ways to keep your business efficient with automated processes while also amping up the personality. Her expert tips range from personalization in pre-scheduled social media content to canned emails and more.

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Erica Johnson

Social media content creation takes a long time in itself… let alone also posting on all the different platforms. There’s Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and more. But with Erica’s recommendations for 3 tools to use, you’ll be creating social media strategies and getting your content live with ease (and much fewer hours!). Learn more about this Creative Director & CEO’s favorite social media tools in her article.

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Allie Moore

We all have had the experience: client signs a contract, you’re ready to go, and then you hit a road bump because… well… they didn’t actually read the contract they signed. Allie shares how to protect yourself and make a positive client experience by incorporating these key tips in your email automations (+ examples of copy you can adapt using your typical email voice) in your canned emails to manage client expectations and remind them of what’s to come. It will make for a smoother and better experience for all involved.

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Joelle Bradfield

Alright, you know the importance of workflows now, but what about the nitty gritty of how to actually build out your workflow in HoneyBook. Joelle shares behind the scenes snapshots of her exact HoneyBook workflow setup so you can create seamless systems and processes to onboard new clients… and wow them with your efficient and personal approach.

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Disclaimer: The advice featured in this guide and on the blog was sourced from our community members for sharing general information and knowledge. For specific legal, financial, tax, mental health and professional advice, please consult an authorized professional.