Increase Your Business’s Efficiency This Summer
2020 delivered a significant blow to businesses all over the globe. With things starting to get back to normal, you may be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel for your business, meaning it’s more important than ever to focus on efficiency and make up for the loss caused by the pandemic.
The past year has also had a severe effect on how and where people work. Whether your business is remote or in-person, here are some of the most important things to keep in mind while you get things back on track for your business.
Don’t Let Tech Issues Slow You Down
With remote work adding more devices and software programs into the mix than ever before, the biggest obstacle you’ll likely face when streamlining your business is technology issues. You and your employees can face challenges based on computers, third-party software, and other essential equipment such as POS machines and more. Before you can increase efficiency, you have to make sure all of your tech meets minimum standards.
Get IT On the Case
There are many reasons for computer slowdown that can affect devices both in the office and for remote workers, such as overworked hardware, outdated software, too many users, and so on. Whatever the reason might be, you’ll need IT to address the issues as soon as possible, so they don’t affect your overall operations. If your business is based online (for example, an e-commerce store), then this is doubly important.
If your business has its own IT department to tackle these issues, arrange for a refresher training course to bring them up to speed. If you don’t have a dedicated IT department, you can always hire third-party professional services to get the job done.
If You’ve Got Remote Workers, Consider Standardizing Equipment
One of the most significant issues with remote working is the random mishmash of equipment used by employees when working remotely. For example, not everyone uses the same model of webcam or microphone, which affects the quality of online meetings and conferences. To counteract issues like this, you should consider standardizing some of the equipment for all.
This can be a hefty initial investment, but the long-term benefits are well worth it if your company plans on remaining remote. For starters, your IT department will have an easier time troubleshooting tech issues. Also, you can expect optimum performance from your employees once they don’t have to deal with tech problems.
Keep Your Employees Engaged
You should do your best to keep your employees engaged if they’re working remotely. Since you cannot be there in person to support and advise them, consider opening a common channel where everyone can share music, memes, video links, and other fun content. This will keep your employees engaged with each other and improve overall morale. Some other steps you can take include:
A more practical way to engage employees with their work is by offering them incentives. Since remote working translates to reduced overhead costs, you can offer substantially better performance incentives to your remote employees. These incentives can include things like gift cards to local restaurants, thoughtful prizes, and so on.
For best results, tie in incentives to challenging milestones to increase employee productivity in your business.
Get Your Team Together
Over the last couple of months, lockdown restrictions have been lifted or reduced in many places. If your team lives nearby one another, why not arrange a get-together for your employees? Meeting and interacting with each other will re-invigorate their team spirit and make them care more about their work.
You can get creative and host a team-building activity or opt for something more simple like a conference, lunch meeting, or picnic.
Evaluate Your Processes
If you haven’t reviewed your company’s operation processes in a while, now is a good time to do so. Improving the work processes of different departments will make streamlining your business’s efficiency easier.
What Can You Automate?
If your business still gets most of its work done manually, you should consider which processes can be automated for improved efficiency. Automation is a great way to speed processes and increase efficiency, and reduce the chance of human error. There are many software automation options for different aspects of your business that you can consider to help increase your company’s efficiency.
Another great way to improve your processes is by gathering feedback from your employees. A lot has been thrown off-kilter over the last year, so talking with your team will help realign things with everyone’s expectations and make your employees feel valued for their opinions and needs. Consider restructuring the chain of command and other processes based on feedback to make things more efficient.
Time to Get Back to Business
After a year of lockdown, most people are more than eager to get back to their everyday lives, including your employees. But it will be a while yet before things are totally normal, so you should do your best to make the ongoing transition process easier for both your business and your employees. Doing so will allow you to get better performance from your workers, pick up the slack left from last year’s lockdowns, and increase overall efficiency.