5 Tips for Creating an Efficient Process Within Your Approval System Blog Feature
Justin Sandbach

By: Justin Sandbach on April 24th, 2020

5 Tips for Creating an Efficient Process Within Your Approval System

project management | creative operations

Getting timely feedback on projects and content is more important than ever for businesses to meet the needs of their customers. The smallest delay or miscommunication can result in missed deadlines. The ability to review and approve digital work efficiently is a critical business process. A properly configured approval solution will help your team’s continuity, speed, and efficiency. Spend less time routing changes, printing copies, and resolving critical issues by getting the right processes in place to keep projects moving.

Understand How Work Flows Through Your Company
Automating your workflows and managing your proofing process allows your team to work more efficiently and collaboratively. With online proofing, your team will be able to access proofs and documents anytime, anywhere, and collaborate in real-time. Here are some questions that you should be asking about your company’s current workflow to find out if you have effective processes in place.

  • Is getting artwork approved a bottleneck in your workflow?
  • Are you missing deadlines?
  • Are manual routing processes making projects hard to track?
  • Does project information, session mark-ups, or revisions get lost between meetings?
  • Can you track approvals from beginning to end while consolidating feedback into one location to mitigate risk?

Good approval workflows will have you spending less time wondering about the status of a project, what changes need to be made, and can keep you focused on the bigger picture of managing deadlines.

Map an Approval Process  
Mapping your current review and approval process is crucial to identifying and understanding possible inefficiencies and pain points. Sometimes, this means creating an entirely new process. With either approach, manual processes like email, department meetings and paper notes aren’t designed to be collaborative. These processes only work to slow projects, feedback and revisions. An effective and efficient approval process will eliminate these time-consuming headaches and give your staff the tools they need to get the job done right the first time.


Configure Your System
Now that your workflow process has been mapped out, you have a blueprint to help determine which product meets your specific requirements. Once you’ve selected the perfect solution, it’s time to configure your system. This is where the real magic happens. There are several powerful products on the market each with their own strengths, and there is a solution that can be configured to meet each client's unique workflow process.

Create Efficiencies and Facilitate Collaboration

  • Create structure through templatized approval processes.
  • Set deadlines in your approval tool to prevent bottlenecks.
  • Have actionable feedback that will provide a clear direction for your review process.

Eliminate Manual Processes and Streamline Approvals

  • Consolidate feedback and approvals in one centralized location.
  • Automate triggers & actions to keep projects moving from one stage to the next.
  • Replace email, meetings and paper notes.
  • Create notifications for reviewing, approving and updating projects.

Integrate Review and Approval Into Your Technology Stack
Most approval solutions should be able to integrate into a larger technology stack to create a holistic and streamlined process. Many products have some form of proofing feature included in a larger product or platform such as Digital Asset Management, Project Management or Workflow Automation solutions. There are also best-of-breed approval tools that include robust API interfaces which allow them to be fully integrated into most technology environments.

While collaborative proofing solutions provide comprehensive online review and approval processes, the ability to integrate them into a larger technology stack allows marketing and creative team managers to address the entire lifecycle of a project as it works its way through the larger technology ecosystem. The most effective integrations we see include project management, digital asset management and content management systems. In reality, any connection that provides a more centralized approach for maintaining business continuity should be considered for integration.

Work With An Expert
In our current climate, it is imperative to work with an expert that understands the bigger picture of how these different products fit into your unique tech stack or workflow process. IO Integration has extensive expertise with Marketing and Creative Operations technology ecosystems. We have a proven record of implementing and integrating a variety of approval solutions and processes and can offer insight into what we’ve seen work with past clients and extend that experience to you.

Contact IOI Today To Evaluate Your Review and Approval Requirements.

Speak To An Expert


About Justin Sandbach

Before joining IO Integration, Justin was a secondary education teacher, including teaching at a maximum security prison in Illinois. He has also built two successful businesses, including a logistics company that merged with a national brand. His creative and technology experience in education and in business bring an engaging and personal insight to the implementation process. At IO Integration, Justin facilitates discovery and implementation for Project Management, Digital Asset Management, and Creative Production systems.

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