Business efficiency is sometimes challenging to define and even more difficult to improve. However, ignoring the fact that your employees and processes have become inefficient could cost you revenue, customers, and your company’s reputation. The following tips can help you tackle inefficiency before it gets too far out of control.
Connect with Customers on Social Media
If you feel stressed about not having the time to create a new marketing campaign, consider the power you have available to you with social media. Creating business accounts on popular sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram enable you to receive direct and authentic feedback from customers.
For example, a customer may alert you to a problem with your company’s shipping process that you didn’t know existed. Responding to customers directly shows that you care about their concerns and usually prompts them to stick with your company even if it hasn’t done everything perfectly.
Automate Processes Wherever Possible
Some business owners have a misconstrued concept of automation and think it means they have to replace human employees. This is not the case at all. It just means that you are willing to use a software program or other type of automation to help you operate the business as efficiently as possible.
One example is cloud collaboration systems that have become popular in recent years. This allows employees who must collaborate often, but live in different parts of the country to communicate in a single online application. Conducting meetings online instead of spending money on travel costs is another common example.
Review the Productivity of Every Employee
Although this process will take some time, the results of improved business productivity are worth your while. Start by going through the human resources record of every employee to determine if he or she has any specific issues that could cause productivity to lag. If you identify any or have simply observed potentially bad habits, schedule a time to sit down with the employee.
Try to start your one-on-one sessions with employees on a positive note. Stress how much you appreciate what that person does well before moving into points to improve. Phrasing the request in terms of how you can help the employee do his or her best rather than embarrassing or shaming will have much better results. Hopefully, your employees will appreciate having clear expectations and the fact that you are willing to help them become more productive.
Payroll, human resources tasks, data entry, and accounting are all examples of tasks that are necessary but also take a lot of time away from core activities. If you find your business productivity lagging due to too much time spent on non-core functions, consider outsourcing them to a company that specializes in that service. It will save you time, money, and most importantly, have a quick impact on business productivity.
Improve Company-Wide Communication
Meetings seem to be the fallback for many business owners and managers but they take a lot of time and aren’t always necessary. A better idea is to take advantage of all the communication available, such as instant messaging or chat system software, to communicate immediately and effectively. Employees can clear up confusion without having to wait for a meeting, which means they can complete their work with no delays.
Need Additional Help Improving Business Productivity?
It can be a bit overwhelming to realize how many changes you need to make to create a more productive culture. A small business consultant at Rickhoff & Associates would be happy to meet with you to put a plan in action. Please contact us today.