How to Create a Simple Workflow?

Laura Parker
Jul 2024

Creating an effective workflow is essential for any business aiming to improve efficiency, reduce errors, and enhance overall productivity. Workflows help streamline processes, ensuring tasks are completed in a systematic and timely manner. In this guide, we will explore how to create a simple workflow step-by-step, discuss the tools you can use, and provide tips on tracking and managing workflows effectively.

By leveraging the right workflow software, businesses can document processes as flowcharts, assign tasks efficiently, and ensure that everyone involved knows their responsibilities. Whether you’re using a workflow sample template or creating a custom workflow from scratch, the key is to keep it simple and clear. This not only makes the workflow easy to follow but also ensures that deviations and improvements are easily captured and implemented.

How to Create a Simple Workflow?

How do you create a workflow step by step

Creating a workflow step by step involves several key stages that ensure your process is both efficient and easy to follow. Here’s how to create a simple workflow in a few straightforward steps:

  • Identify the Process: Start by defining the process you want to streamline. This could be anything from employee onboarding to customer service management. Clearly identify the beginning and end points of the process.
  • List the Tasks: Break down the process into individual tasks. Each task should be a single, actionable step that contributes to completing the overall process. Make sure every task is necessary and adds value to the workflow.
  • Assign Responsibilities: Determine who will be responsible for each task. Assigning clear ownership ensures accountability and helps avoid confusion.
  • Set Deadlines: Establish realistic deadlines for each task. Deadlines help keep the workflow on track and ensure timely completion.
  • Document the Workflow: Use workflow software to document the entire process. This can be done using a workflow sample template or creating a new one from scratch. Visual representation through flowcharts can make the workflow easier to understand.
  • Test the Workflow: Before fully implementing the workflow, test it to identify any potential issues. Make necessary adjustments based on feedback.
  • Implement and Monitor: Once tested, implement the workflow and monitor its performance. Collect feedback and make continuous improvements.

By following these steps, you can create a simple yet effective workflow that enhances your business operations. Utilizing workflow software and templates can greatly simplify this process, providing a structured and efficient way to manage your tasks.

How to build a simple workflow

Building a simple workflow involves selecting the right tools and implementing best practices to ensure efficiency and clarity. Utilizing project workflow software can significantly simplify this process. Here’s how you can build out your simple workflow:

  • Choose the Right Software: Select a project workflow software that fits your business needs. Look for features like task assignment, deadline setting, and visual flowchart creation.
  • Map Out the Workflow: Use the software to map out your workflow visually. Start by creating a flowchart that outlines each step in the process from start to finish.
  • Define Stages and Milestones: Break down your workflow into stages and set milestones. This helps in tracking progress and ensures that each phase of the workflow is completed before moving to the next.
  • Incorporate Automation: Where possible, incorporate automation to handle repetitive tasks. This can save time and reduce the likelihood of errors.
  • Collaborate and Share: Ensure that all team members have access to the workflow and understand their roles. Use the software’s collaboration tools to keep everyone on the same page.
  • Track Progress: Use the software to monitor the workflow’s progress in real time. This includes tracking task completion, identifying bottlenecks, and making adjustments as needed.
  • Collect Feedback: After implementing the workflow, gather feedback from your team to identify any areas for improvement. Use this feedback to refine and optimize the workflow.

By following these steps, you can build a simple, effective workflow that leverages the capabilities of project workflow software to enhance productivity and streamline your processes.

How do you draw a simple workflow

Creating a workflow diagram template is a crucial step in visualizing your process and making it easy to understand and follow. Here’s how to create a workflow diagram template effectively:

  • Select a Diagramming Tool: Choose a tool that suits your needs. Many project workflow software solutions include built-in diagramming capabilities. Alternatively, you can use dedicated diagramming tools like Microsoft Visio, Lucidchart, or even basic tools like PowerPoint.
  • Define Your Workflow Steps: List all the steps involved in your workflow. Each step should be a specific action or task that moves the process forward.
  • Choose a Template: If your software provides a workflow diagram template, start with that. Templates can save time and provide a structured format that is easy to customize.
  • Add Shapes and Symbols: Use standard shapes and symbols to represent different types of tasks and actions. For example, use rectangles for tasks, diamonds for decision points, and arrows to show the flow of the process.
  • Label Each Step: Clearly label each shape with the corresponding task or action. This ensures that anyone viewing the diagram can understand what each step entails.
  • Arrange the Steps Sequentially: Place the shapes in a logical sequence that represents the flow of the process from start to finish. Ensure that the connections between shapes (arrows) accurately reflect the order of tasks.
  • Review and Adjust: Review the diagram to ensure it accurately represents the workflow. Make adjustments as necessary to improve clarity and accuracy.
  • Save as a Template: Once your diagram is complete, save it as a template for future use. This allows you to quickly create new workflows by modifying the existing template.

Creating a clear and effective workflow diagram template helps ensure that all team members can easily follow and understand the process. It also provides a visual tool for identifying potential improvements and streamlining operations.

Can you create a workflow in Excel

Yes, you can create a workflow in Excel, which is a versatile tool that many businesses already use. However, while Excel can handle basic workflows, it has limitations compared to dedicated workflow software like beSlick. Here’s how to create a simple workflow in Excel and why you might consider beSlick for more complex needs:

  • Set Up Your Worksheet: Open Excel and set up your worksheet by creating columns for each element of your workflow. Common columns include Task Name, Description, Assigned To, Start Date, Due Date, and Status.
  • Define Your Tasks: List out all the tasks involved in your workflow. Each task should have its own row, and the columns should be filled with relevant details.
  • Use Conditional Formatting: Excel’s conditional formatting feature can help visualize the workflow. For instance, you can use color-coding to highlight tasks based on their status (e.g., green for completed, yellow for in-progress, red for overdue).
  • Create a Flowchart: For a more visual representation, use Excel’s shape tools to draw a flowchart. Go to the “Insert” tab, select “Shapes,” and use arrows, rectangles, and other shapes to map out your workflow steps. Connect the shapes with arrows to show the sequence of tasks.
  • Download a Template: To save time, you can use a workflow template excel free download. Many templates are available online that can be customized to fit your specific needs. These templates often include predefined columns and formatting, making it easier to get started.
  • Customize the Template: Once you have downloaded an Excel workflow template, customize it by adding your tasks and adjusting the formatting to suit your preferences. Ensure that the template accurately reflects your workflow process.
  • Share and Collaborate: Save your workflow and share it with your team. Excel allows for easy sharing and collaboration, enabling team members to update the workflow in real-time.

While Excel is useful for simple workflows, it has notable downsides when compared to beSlick:

  • Limited Automation: Excel lacks advanced automation features, which can lead to manual updates and increased chances of errors.
  • Scalability Issues: As workflows become more complex, managing them in Excel can become cumbersome and inefficient.
  • Lack of Integration: Excel does not integrate seamlessly with other tools and systems, which can hinder overall workflow efficiency.
  • Template Availability: While Excel offers downloadable templates, beSlick provides a comprehensive library of customizable workflow templates tailored to various business processes, making it easier to get started and ensure consistency.

In contrast, beSlick offers robust workflow software capabilities, such as dynamic due dates, task automation, and seamless collaboration, making it a superior choice for complex and evolving workflows. Additionally, beSlick’s extensive library of workflow templates can jumpstart your process documentation, providing professionally designed templates that can be easily customized to fit your specific needs.

What is an Example of Process Automation?

How to track workflow in Excel

Tracking workflow in Excel is possible, but using project workflow software like beSlick can offer more advanced tracking and integration capabilities. Here’s how you can track your workflow in Excel and why beSlick might be a better choice for comprehensive workflow management:

  • Set Up Tracking Columns: In your Excel worksheet, add columns to track the progress of each task. Common tracking columns include Status, Progress Percentage, Comments, and Last Updated.
  • Use Conditional Formatting: Utilize Excel’s conditional formatting to visually track task status. For example, use color-coding to indicate task status (e.g., green for completed, yellow for in-progress, red for overdue).
  • Update Regularly: Regular updates are crucial for keeping your workflow tracking accurate. Ensure that team members update their task statuses and progress regularly.
  • Create Progress Charts: Use Excel’s charting tools to create visual progress reports. You can create bar charts, pie charts, or Gantt charts to visualize task completion and overall workflow progress.
  • Manual Monitoring: Excel requires manual monitoring and updates, which can be time-consuming and prone to errors, especially for complex workflows.

Tracking with beSlick

Using beSlick for tracking offers significant advantages over Excel:

  • Automated Updates: beSlick automates task updates and notifications, reducing the need for manual monitoring and ensuring that you always have the most up-to-date information.
  • Real-Time Collaboration: beSlick provides real-time collaboration features, allowing team members to update task statuses and add comments instantly. This enhances communication and ensures everyone is on the same page.
  • Advanced Reporting: beSlick offers advanced reporting tools, providing detailed insights into workflow performance, bottlenecks, and areas for improvement. Customizable dashboards and real-time analytics make tracking more efficient.
  • Integration with Excel: beSlick integrates seamlessly with Excel, allowing you to import and export data between the two platforms. This means you can leverage Excel’s powerful data analysis features while benefiting from beSlick’s advanced workflow tracking capabilities.


While Excel can be used for basic workflow tracking, project workflow software like beSlick provides more robust and efficient tracking solutions. With features like automated updates, real-time collaboration, advanced reporting, and seamless Excel integration, beSlick can help you streamline your workflow management and achieve better results.

Elevate Your Workflow Management with beSlick

Tracking and managing workflows effectively can be a game-changer for your business, significantly improving efficiency and reducing errors. While Excel offers basic capabilities for creating and tracking workflows, it falls short when handling more complex processes and scaling up operations. That’s where beSlick comes in.

beSlick is designed to provide comprehensive workflow management solutions that excel where Excel cannot. By leveraging beSlick’s advanced features, you can automate repetitive tasks, streamline collaboration, and gain deep insights into your workflow performance. With an extensive library of customizable workflow templates and seamless integration with Excel, beSlick combines ease of use with powerful functionality.

In summary, while you can create and track workflows in Excel, utilizing dedicated project workflow software like beSlick offers substantial benefits. With beSlick, you gain access to dynamic due dates, automated updates, real-time collaboration, advanced reporting, and a vast library of workflow templates tailored to your business needs. These features not only streamline your processes but also ensure that your workflows are efficient, scalable, and adaptable to change.

To experience the full potential of workflow management, explore how beSlick can transform your operations. Visit our workflow software page to learn more and get started today. For more detailed examples, check out our workflow sample template to see how beSlick can fit your specific requirements.

Need a better way to track team tasks & workflow?
Need a better way to track team tasks & workflow?

, Author of The Dirty Word and CEO at beSlick

Alister Esam is a successful entrepreneur and investor, having bootstrapped his fintech software business eShare to international status operating in over 40 countries and servicing 20,000 board directors, before successfully exiting to a multibillion-dollar organisation in 2018. He now invests in a variety of startups and on a global mission to make work, work.