Marketing functions in large enterprises manage 1000s of projects a year including the creation of sales collateral, email messages and campaigns, web assets, videos, etc. The underlying workflows are often orchestrated in a system called Adobe Workfront. In our experience working with marketing functions, while the creative tasks such as design, writing, approval are tracked in the system, they are seldom “engineered” or optimized to increase resource utilization and minimize re-work.
Long story short, this means marketing departments rely on the “hustle” of their team members, but don’t offer meaningful insights to build scale into their operations. The more time marketing professionals have to spend managing their work processes; the less time they have to create sales and marketing materials.
Marketers use Workfront to manage content, plan and track marketing campaigns, and execute complex workflows across teams.
Too often, the capabilities of the workflow process in Workfront to identify gaps in the creation process are ignored and the solution is used primarily for job assignment and completion – simply checking that work has been done, regardless of how efficiently. The content creation process is prone to a number of challenges:
- Rework in proofing
- Mismatch of an employee’s skills to an assignment
With limited insight into process details, there’s limited ability to proactively address these challenges.
This is where Celonis process mining can be used to identify gaps in the workflow as designed and how it works in reality. Here are two of many data points process mining can help marketers untangle their creative processes:
Variations in the process: Process mining allows us to visually see the different process paths the work followed and investigate different aspects such as the number of work items per path, the time between each step, etc. Here we begin to get a feel for where the bottlenecks are occurring.
For example, here we are looking as the different paths work flows through a marketing department. We can see that there are nearly 2,200 different paths – or ways in which work is complete. This is far too many variations considering there are just 7,500 different jobs.
In this example, Across the top are the three primary KPIs we focused on: estimated duration, actual duration, and the amount of actual work needed to complete the job (note, duration is in days, work is in hours). Right away, we see that the portion of actual work time to the duration time is less than 15% (8 hr. of work divided by 56 hrs. of duration) - a bad indicator. This means that the majority of time needed to complete a job is “wait time” or latency waiting for the next resource or step.
Common benefits for marketing teams include increased capacity, shorter turnaround times, and efficiency increases that lower overall costs.
In the next graphic, we have identified that 15.4% of proofing jobs that require re-work at a cost of nearly $1.5 million annually. Now a manager can focus on those jobs and reduce re-work.
Large marketing departments perform some amazing creative work. Yet, given their scope and scale, additional focus is needed on process efficiency to free additional capacity and reduce waste.
Consider a proof of concept or initial assessment with Doculabs to get a “health check” of your current creative development processes.