The clients stack up (we trust), as do the projects, tasks and obligations, as do the hours. In the quest for ever-greater degrees of efficiency, the battle for hours is the battle for keeping costs down, and, as an owner or leader, there is little more frustrating than seeing those hours being driven up as the result of sloppy practices and habits.
Individuals need to organise themselves better and stop eating into company profits through their inability to coordinate and time manage. That’s how we may feel, anyway.
But the truth is that no matter how much we may wish to keep certain individuals in check, and no matter how much we may suspect certain teams of not pulling their weight, it is often the case that a group’s success at achieving the efficiency we would wish of them is, in fact, being limited by the very structures we have put in place in order to extract their best possible performance. We leaders are the problem. No longer can we hold Accounts accountable, no longer can we black mark Marketing.
So how to make things better? Get a pen and paper – then throw them in the bin – because what follows are 4 simple ways to help you reduce hours, save costs, and get your company and operations efficient – and paper’s got nothing to do with it.
Set up, organise and empower strong teams – teams you can believe in, teams who can believe in themselves. With great responsibility comes great problem-solving capability. So delegate, then sit back and allow teams to flourish – no more stifling micro-management.
Accounting and Expenses Management Software
The technology is out there and entirely accessible. Between staff on the road and the people in finance, hours upon hours are wasted each month as teams and individuals wrestle facts and figures from each other before finally deciding what is and what isn’t policy, what is and what isn’t claimable. But with the correct software and/or app for managing the business expenses, you can watch as the hours dwindle, cut down with powerful, sweeping strokes of efficiency, as the spreadsheets and receipts disappear from view. Workflows are simple and instant to set up, while the drive towards a paper-free working environment allows for all kinds of associated time and cost savings.
Outsourcing via online workspace
Project-based tasks especially will benefit from contributions from remote individuals or teams who specialise in the given area. Particularly a small or mid-sized business may struggle to perform all the task types that are required of them, but – and especially with customisable workspaces set up for collaboration – such tasks can be passed on to a capable group that offer the specific service that is needed.
Less duplication, more cooperation
Furthermore, with such workspaces and cooperation embedded into the very fabric of a company’s operations, it will soon be found that internal file sharing, knowledge exchange, and task completion no longer suffer from the ills that dog so many daily, essential activities. Tasks are not duplicated, documents are current, information is accessible.
Finally, think carefully about where certain tasks or operations can piggybacked to either save time or double up on output. For example, when reaching out to clients – perhaps with a general email or invoice – have promotional information included – maybe a special offer or article.
By considering how best to reduce your operations’ dependency on manual methods of project management, collaboration and accounting, as well as in what ways the organisation can execute its tasks with greater fluency and cooperation, hours and costs per project can be brought down, and your business’s ROI can see the vertical shift you’re hoping for.