An organization’s success is dependent upon its workplace running smoothly. With office resources often being limited or stretched, both financially and operationally, business leaders and their staff frequently find themselves being pushed to their limits trying to keep up with daily demands. To combat this, you can easily find numerous articles talking about how to maximize efficiency at work but when most of us are busy running a business, the last thing anyone is thinking about is how to implement strategies to be more efficient—in fact it sounds exhausting just reading about it! However, I have found the following productivity strategies generate results, increase employee morale, productivity and retention.
Identify What’s Not Working
Take a look around your office and see what your staff is working on throughout the day. Spend time speaking with them to better understand what is and isn’t helping with on-the-job efficiency. Upon hearing their concerns, assess whether their time is spent producing actual deliverables or if they’re struggling with a particular system, report, or technology. By looking at the big picture of how your team currently operates, you’ll be able to understand their strengths and weaknesses as well as overall concerns and challenges.
The next step to streamlining workplace efficiency is to understand where your business funds are going in relation to the challenges of your workforce. Connect your team’s inefficiencies to line items in your budget to find where over or under-investments are being made. This helps you see gaps and problem areas in business investments and allows you to make adjustments accordingly.
Research Technological Options
Practically all businesses have some type of technology system in place that helps streamline internal operations. As internal servers become more expensive to operate, work-from-home inquiries are rising, and customer needs become more demanding, the need for custom technology solutions and data security increases. For example, according to a study by Accenture, “nearly 1,500 C-level executives found that four in 10 companies are aggressively pursuing and investing in mobile technologies, which they see as an integral part of their business strategies.” I work with several law enforcement, medical, and legal professionals daily that constantly inform me of the need to streamline their office efficiencies using outsourced transcription services because of the cost and time-saving benefits.
Utilize Small Increments of Time
If you have big projects on the horizon but don’t have time in the day to squeeze all them in, try breaking up projects in small increments throughout the week. If you only have 30 minutes, spend five starting the project and see how far you get. If you only spend five minutes starting it, hey, at least it’s started (that’s the hard part!)
After understanding where your money is going and how your workforce is managing its daily tasks, it is time to start making important decisions about staffing, technology, and budget allocation. In order to alleviate overworked staff, many business decision-makers are turning to solutions like enhanced training systems, stringent hiring protocols, and outsourcing. Spend time assessing the pros and cons of these options to help you make educated decisions about your business operations.
This is a no-brainer but if you’re lucky enough to have 20 minutes to spare in your day and you’re trying to figure out what to do, see what projects you can get a head start on. If there is time in your day where you can spend a few minutes working ahead, do so! This strategy is important because when you’re in the mood to keep cranking out results, you need to take advantage of that “just do it” attitude and put the pedal to the metal (or in your case, probably, pen to paper or fingers to keyboard).
Make it a goal to accomplish one of these six things on a timeline that works for your business. Following these steps from start to finish will help you understand your businesses inner workings and identify areas for improvement. With just a bit of internal investigation and research, both startups and seasoned businesses alike can ensure their office is running smoothly.
Ben Walker is the president and owner of Transcription Outsourcing, LLC. Transcription Outsourcing, LLC provides transcription services for professionals in the legal, law enforcement, and medical industries among other general transcription services. Founded in 2010, the business provides fast turn-around, accurate transcripts with friendly service. Transcription Outsourcing understands the busy yet detail-oriented nature of your business and is dedicated to making sure your transcription project is delivered quickly, accurately, and to your organization’s specifications.