Your staff’s productivity can make or break your company. It doesn’t matter how simple or complex your business processes or workflows are, productivity is the difference between making a profit and failure. So how can you ensure that your workforce remains productive
Here are some top tips for workplace productivity.
Look after your staff.
We’ve all heard the term ‘happy wife, happy life’. Well, the same thing applies to the workplace. Keeping your staff happy will keep them productive. Of course, we all have days where we struggle to motivate ourselves but on the whole, happy staff work harder. They will also be more willing to go above and beyond if and when required.
Workplace flexibility is key to keeping your staff happy. We all lead busy and sometimes unpredictable lives. Allowing staff to come and go as they please, within reason, will allow them to focus better when in the office. It will also ensure that they don’t feel overtired or overworked and will keep them productive.
Working from home is also a good way to give your staff a work-life balance. Staff appreciate being trusted to work outside of the office and are actually more likely to put in more hours in their distraction-free home than they would if they were in a busy office.
Rewarding staff with little treats and acknowledgements of their hard work is also key. A box of chocolates in the kitchen every now and again may seem like nothing, but it will boost morale and increase productivity.
Piling too much work onto one person may seem cheaper but actually hiring an appropriate amount of staff to carry out your workflow is far more cost-effective. Think of your workflow like a production assembly line. By allowing each staff member to focus on the certain amount of tasks each, they will become experts on those tasks and will repeat them quickly and to a high standard.
If you need more people on your team but are not sure if you have the budget, consult professional recruitment experts
to discuss your options. Perhaps an intern, temp or a part-time staff member could fix all your problems!
A project or task could take a week or several years, but the principles of getting it done efficiently remain the same. Whether you’re taking on a new staff member or changing your business processes, give your staff clear instructions.
Make sure everyone knows what their role is and what the final outcome needs to be.
Set up action items for each team member.
Give clear and manageable deadlines.
Visualize your workflow.
Help your staff understand the bigger picture by outlining the entire process in a visual format. Supply the information in a diagram or infographic. Try and keep it as simple as possible and leave it in a place accessible to all staff, whether that’s on the wall in the office or on your company’s intranet.
Never underestimate the power of teamwork. Having a strong sense of teamwork is key to your success.
Teams support each other and help each other complete tasks when required. Having a strong sense of teamwork will not only ensure that your processes are completed efficiently but will also ensure that if a member of staff is called away for whatever reason (sickness, bereavement etc.), the rest of your team will step up and ensure that the work is still completed correctly.
No matter how many times a task is completed, things go wrong, people make mistakes and deadlines can be unrealistic. It’s a fact of life. The difference between good workflow management and bad workflow management, however, is your ability to adapt.
If a staff member is falling behind on a deadline, wouldn’t it be better to know about it ahead of time so you can do something about it? Or if a key element of your workflow isn’t quite working, isn’t it better to know about it rather than keep making the same mistake over and over which could cost you thousands of dollars? Regularly checking in with your staff on all levels and making sure you are approachable is key to getting the job done efficiently, cost effectively and with minimal disruption.
Sometimes, it’s easy to get bogged down in work and forget to celebrate milestones, especially when you are repeating the same task or process for the hundredth time. Whether it’s successfully onboarding a new staff member, resolving a customer complaint or simply meeting a deadline, make sure you celebrate successes with your staff. It will do wonders for their motivation.
Utilize a Workflow Management System
Automated Workflow Management Systems can help streamline operations. These systems can track, coordinate and control your business processes to ensure that you are performing your workflows as efficiently as possible. A good WMS can also provide you with continuous feedback and data that will improve your team’s performance and save you money. There are various Workflow Management Systems available on the market, so make sure you find one that fights your business’ particular needs.
Guest Post by Craig Evans
Craig is a finance fanatic and tech junkie based in Sydney, Australia. He likes to impart his knowledge and insights on the latest business industry news on his blog, Curious Vision.