One factor that can steer your company on the road to success is operational efficiency. A sluggish workplace with dated systems and inept employees can cost your business heaps of money and lead to stagnation and its eventual demise.
But, before this happens, consider taking matters into your hands! Improving operational efficiency requires you to measure and refine financials, technology, employees, and of course, processes. Listed below are some tips you can employ to increase the efficacy of your workplace by manifold.
1. Formulate a long-term technology plan
Replacing ineffective or obsolete hardware is always disruptive to employees, which lowers their productivity initially. However, such disruptions are essential for increasing overall workplace and organizational efficiency and profit maximization.
But the initial reluctance to adopt new technology can be eliminated, or at least, minimized by developing both short-term and long-term objectives. Then, you should carefully map technology solutions to meet those objectives.
2. Upskill, upskill and upskill
Why? Because it’s an intelligent way to make your employees more productive. And increased productivity leads to increased efficiency.
The internet is a fantastic resource with plenty of opportunities to upskill your employees and make them better at what they’re already doing
. And that too with utmost flexibility and convenience. If you feel your workforce needs additional training, encourage them to enroll in online short courses or higher education programs to hone their skills.
For instance, an online masters degree in business administration can help employees enhance business know-how and improve managerial efficacy. This way, you’ll be adding more value to them and the company.
3. Enhance employee satisfaction and improve retention
Suppose your workplace is riddled with inefficient processes, for example, sluggish networks, antiquated phone systems, or laborious tasks prone to manual errors.
In that case, the employees will probably become frustrated in a short amount of time. Why? Because their jobs automatically become difficult without the right tools and resources.
Plus, customers may sense this frustration, which may result in them losing interest in your business. What’s worse? Even the best of employees may eventually experience burnout and end up resigning.
Remember, you’ll not just lose a productive workforce but will have to devote your money and precious time to hiring a replacement. Therefore, do whatever it takes to keep your employees happy and functioning correctly, even if that means investing in an always-available, reliable, and secure network.
4. Outsource IT tasks
Just think for a second: if one of your employees uses their time to manage your IP communications system or network security, is the person an efficient resource? We doubt. Usually, a better, more efficient solution would be to outsource tasks like these to a dedicated IT service provider.
With a service provider, you won’t have to spend a big chunk of your revenue on developing in-house expertise. In addition, you’ll still get IT-related tasks managed and done – for a far lesser cost.
Also, outsourcing allows your workers to focus on their tasks, making them productive in activities that directly relate to the core competencies of your business, such as marketing and CRM. This helps your business shine and remain competitive. Numerous small businesses think that going the DIY route in every operational aspect will save them a lot of money. However, this can overload the employees and burn a hole through the wallet.
5. Reduce unproductive travel time
One thing that affects operational efficiency but often goes unnoticed is traveling, especially when traveling is done by airplane. Thanks to a plethora of conferencing tools like video conferencing, you can now conduct business meetings over the internet. Meaning, no traveling is required to attend training sessions or offsite meetings.
You can thus use the time saved on useless transportation more crucial business tasks, leading to enhanced productivity. Plus, less traveling saves a lot of money. To further reduce unproductive travel time daily, consider remote working!
6. Streamline communications with customers
Remember, satisfied customers are essential to your bottom line. If you want to keep your customers satisfied, interact with them in an efficient manner. There’s one way to do it: link customer relationship management with an IT communications system.
This way, when a customer calls, a window of the customer’s contact info will pop up on the employee’s screen. This employee will also be able to access details like recent returns and pending orders, which will streamline employee-client communications making them faster and more efficient.
7. Invest in VoIP services
Missed calls are never good for your business. Yes, they may create operational inefficiencies (for example, trying to reach employees who aren’t present). Still, they’ll also lead to lost revenues, missed opportunities, and project delays. With a VoIP communications solution, all your workforce will be accessible anywhere, anytime.
This means almost no missed calls. While there are many benefits of this, the best ones are: the ability to check pages, fax, voice mail, and e-mail in a single inbox and accessing their entire communications system wherever they go.
8. Make collaboration easy
Interactive, effective collaboration between customers, suppliers, partners, and employees can reduce costs and boost efficiency. With integrated voice, video, and data solutions, you’ll benefit from IP communications, videoconferencing, interactive calendaring, etc.
These technologies will pave the way for easy, seamless collaboration in your business model. Consider investing in cloud-based solutions for effective teamwork within the organization.
9. Deliver anywhere, anytime access to remote employees
Compared to larger enterprises, employees in SMEs tend to be more mobile. Therefore, these businesses need to provide their workforce with ubiquitous access to information.
This way, their productivity will increase by leaps and bounds. Two technologies enable universal access: one, pervasive wireless networks, which allow employees to stay connected to the network even if they’re roaming about an office campus or building.
And the second, virtual private networks that provide mobile employees secure access to the company network. This way, they’ll be able to fulfill work-related obligations from anywhere, anytime, without having to worry about cybersecurity-related issues.
Creating an efficient workplace entails cost-cutting and more about the intelligent allocation of resources. In this article, we’ve mentioned a few tips that can help workplaces move in the right direction. Plan technological deployments properly.
Upskill your employees and ensure they’re satisfied. Also, outsourcing, innovative communication and collaboration solutions play a significant role in fine-tuning your operations. Since operational efficiency is a synergy of every process, it can only be improved if no stone is left unturned.
click here for more articles