Workflows in HubSpot are an extremely beneficial tool for businesses of all industries. Each workflow allows you to automate certain processes and actions based on entry criteria that is predetermined by you. However, with any kind of automated processes, there is always a risk that you make a mistake or send the wrong email to the wrong person. Creating a process to track your HubSpot workflows can help to make sure you are on top of each step of every process you set up.
Workflows have a huge range; they can complete actions from internal maintenance to internal communication to external communication with your clients. However, if you do not audit your workflows and find out if any steps will be impacting other workflows, you could end up with a giant mess on your hands.
As marketers, we always want to be sending the correct information to the correct group of people. Workflows and automation is a great way to ensure this is done while also making it easier on us. However, if we make a mistake or do not track our automation, we could send the wrong information to the wrong group of people.
Because of this, we came up with a process to audit and track all of our workflows to make sure our entry criteria and any related automation is always functioning correctly.
How Do Workflows Work?
In HubSpot, the workflows are designed to make processes easier for you and automate things like setting contact properties, sending emails, and setting tasks.
We typically classify our workflows into three different types:
Maintenance workflows help us to keep our data clean so we don’t have to continually go in and update our contact properties.
For example, if we know that we always want a contact to be classified as a specific lead status based on where they are in a deal, we can set a workflow to set the contact property ‘Lead Status’ based on the deal property ‘Deal Stage.’
Internal workflows send out internal communication to team members based on specific actions, usually involving a contact.
For example, if a contact reaches a certain lead status or visits a specific page, we have workflows that will notify a predetermined team member to follow up with that contact.
Active workflows are one of the most important to keep track of because they send out active communication to contacts or customers. This could include things like sending an email when a contact visits a certain page or sending out an email when a contact is set to a specific lead status.
Because these workflows will send out communication based on lead statuses or other criteria, it is very important that you track what triggers each workflow and make sure that you are not mistakenly entering contacts into workflows.
How Do I Track My Workflows?
We found that the best way to keep track of each workflow and their triggers is to create a spreadsheet that documents and gives a brief overview of the workflow.
The items we track for each workflow include:
- Workflow Name and Description
- Workflow Type
- Enrollment Trigger
- Re-Enrollment Criteria
- Associated Emails, Landing Pages, Forms, and Lists
- Workflow Exit Criteria
- Workflow Goal
While this might seem like a lot of information, it all works together to let us know what each workflow does, how it impacts other workflows, and what other pieces of content are involved.
As you can see in the examples below, this documentation allows us to see workflows that are in related campaigns and what type of workflow it is. It also describes the action each workflow will take along with what will trigger the workflow to begin and if the contacts will be entered more than once.
This documentation also notes what other pieces of content you have that are related to each workflow. If a contact has to fill out a form to enter or exit the workflow, it is noted. Same with any emails that are a part of the workflow, any landing pages they visit throughout the workflow or any lists they are entered into as a result of the workflow.
The final and arguably most important way this workflow tracking is used is to see which workflows are associated with each other. While we associate workflows that are a part of the same campaign, we also make a note when at action completed in one workflow will trigger another workflow.
For example, if you have a maintenance workflow that sets a lead status and an action workflow that is triggered by that particular lead status, you want to be sure to note that those workflows are associated.
If you accidentally set the wrong lead status from your workflow, you could enter a contact into a workflow they do not need to be a part of.
They could receive the wrong email or other information that does not pertain to them. This could just be a mistake or it could be detrimental to your business, depending on the nature of the communication.
This tracking documentation will allow you to see which workflows impact each other at a glance which will hopefully help to alleviate some of the pressure from these problems.
While workflows are an amazing tool that can help automate processes, clean up data, and send out communication, they also can cause a big mess if not used correctly.
The best way to ensure that you avoid any kind of mess, accident, or mistake is to document your workflows as much as possible. If you are aware of exactly what your does, what other workflows it is related to and what triggers it, you will be able to hopefully avoid the majority of mistakes that come with automation.
Interested in learning more about HubSpot and if it can be beneficial to your business? Contact us today for a free HubSpot consultation!