Business Process VS Workflow: What’s The Difference? And What Is Changing?

by Alex Mansour

2 years ago · 3 min read

Terms in the world of business are many, and you always need to keep learning more. You may have recently seen content about “business processes” or “workflows”, and more certainly workflow automation and business process improvement.


You surely know, that somehow those two terms aren’t much different. But there is a difference between them in some cases, which we are explaining here.

The difference between a workflow and a business process? 

Before diving into the differences between workflows and business processes, let’s have a definition for each of them.

A workflow is a group of repeated activities performed by businesses to finish specific tasks. A process is on another level, as it is going through a repetitive activity to achieve an organisational goal, and not targeting a task.

An example of a workflow is the workflow of signing papers. This is a repetitive thing that is done over and over for the sake of this task. A business process is like the process of pitching with clients, it is a whole bigger aspect with a direct organisational goal.

How to clearly differentiate between business processes and workflows 

To differentiate between workflows and business processes, as the two concepts seem to be very similar, you need to consider the impact on the organization. If the process or workflow has a non-significant organizational impact, then it is just a workflow and not a process.

This makes the human resources department, as an example, having both processes and workflows. The repeated work has a significant organizational impact, but it is also repetitive work to achieve certain tasks.

So, always focus on what to never consider a process to get it right, which is what has no organizational impact.

Business process management and workflow management 

There are many aspects that build upon business processes and workflows, including their management and automation. Managing business processes and workflows properly can have many positive impacts on businesses.

The impacts vary from cutting down costs, improving employee productivity, saving time for executives, reducing lost opportunities, and having clear duties and tasks.

Automation is changing everything

In the past, this wasn’t achieved the same way as now. We now have software that has revolutionized the way business process management and workflow management work.


Workflow automation and business process automation software also let businesses remove redundant tasks and have much higher efficiency while letting them offer whole new solutions to their clients or customers.

People always matter to processes and workflows 

This never means that people aren’t important anymore, as people always matter most. This software lets people focus on more creative work.

To do so, they need to go through some training to take advantage of the workflow and business process automation tools. Then have the opportunity to share feedback and work in a healthy environment that they love.

Bottom line

Business processes and workflows are different. They are essential concepts in the world of business, especially in a world where automation is revolutionizing both. Businesses should be aware of the benefits behind them.

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