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How to Create a Better Work Order Process

Work orders are the backbone of just about any business, used to assign work to various departments and check on its progress while ensuring there are sufficient resources available to carry it out. They allow a company to know what’s been started and which work is completed. Without work order management, things become disorganized and often result in lower productivity and less time.

Work orders can be manually generated through work requests submitted by employees, clients, or automatically generated through work order software, making the entire process easier while reducing the risk of errors.

To create a better work order process, consider these tips.

Get Rid of the Paper

Paper work orders can easily get lost, and there’s no real tracking. Once it’s sent off to a staff member or client, there’s no proof that it’s been received. When there are digital work orders, everything is tracked, and concerns about misinterpreting someone’s writing are eliminated too. In a Xerox survey of over a thousand companies in the U.S., U.K., Germany, and France, nearly half of respondents noted that a consequential amount of time was being wasted on paper-intensive processes, and most viewed it as having a big negative impact on their bottom lines.

While paper-based work orders may seem easier to create in the moment, they can cause a delay in communication and extra costs in both money and time. As companies grow, managing paper-based work orders quickly becomes inefficient, not to mention being environmentally unfriendly.

Plan to Use Work Orders for All Tasks, Big and Small

Having a digital work order process encourages workers to keep track of even the smallest tasks. It’s important that workers use it for all tasks, no matter how big or small, as it can prevent problems further down the road. For example, if a company’s asset needs a part replacement when there is a system of record, it’s easy to check its work order history, identifying the part that requires more maintenance and one that was recently replaced.


Designate a priority for all work orders, creating a work order procedure that prevents requesters from designating every work order as a high priority. This way, the work orders that really do need urgent attention will be completed faster.

Scheduling and Assigning Tasks

With a digital system, your process should include scheduling and assigning tasks in real-time. You’ll be able to schedule new jobs, manage the approvals, send out invoices and obtain a detailed overview of it all. It helps to keep everyone on track and on time. Once completed, the status of the work order can quickly be updated with just a click.

Consider Using Mobile Devices

When workers can create, modify, and update work orders from their tablets or phones, it can save a lot of time and even reduce errors thanks to barcoding and integrated camera capabilities. When you have barcode scanning that can be done with a mobile device, there’s no longer a need to search an extensive database using keywords. Supervisors, managers, and workers can also submit work orders from wherever they are in the field.

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