Although the majority of businesses waste time, energy, and resources in some areas, all business owners should be mindful of areas that aren’t operating at their full capacity.
According to a study by Asana, employees spend 60% of their time on “work about work” such as communicating tasks, searching for files, drafting documents, or preparing meetings. As a result, only “27% of their time is spent on jobs they were hired to do“.
Inefficiency in the workplace is not only costly in the long run, but can have a wider impact on the overall success of a business.
If you’re a business owner, you might be wondering how to improve efficiency in the workplace.
Ways to improve efficiency in the workplace include, but are not limited to:
- Reduce unnecessary meetings
- Invest in a SaaS platform
- Prioritise automation
- Encourage time blocking
- Delegate and promote accountability
Improve Efficiency in the Workplace
One of the most effective ways to improve efficiency in the workplace is to reduce unnecessary meetings.
Research shows that unnecessary meetings can have a detrimental impact, with ‘71% of senior managers believe meetings are unproductive and inefficient’.
This emphasises the importance of reducing unnecessary meetings, not only to promote efficiency but also to create a workplace that respects time management.
Although this is one tip that might take some time to implement, using team communication apps and investing in recording software for optional attendees can help to reduce the distraction caused by unnecessary meetings.
While some meetings will still be necessary, try to keep them as short as possible, have an agenda, and ensure that there is a strict end time in place.
The next effective way to improve efficiency in the workplace is to invest in a SaaS platform.
In short, a Software-As-A-Service (SaaS) platform is a cloud-based solution to provide software to users, eliminating the need for endless data platforms.
It is thought that ‘66% of professionals look at a spreadsheet at least once per hour in an office setting’, which is where a SaaS platform can help.
A good SaaS platform allows businesses to consolidate a wealth of data from numerous sources, in turn helping to streamline processes and reduce inefficiencies all whilst minimising the risk of losing valuable data.
Investing in a SaaS platform enables data collaboration and empowers data-driven insights, allowing businesses to make quick, efficient decisions that are always informed and backed by data.
SaaS platforms also enable you to sync all of your SaaS systems, providing business owners with the peace of mind that their employees are always working with the correct and accurate data.
The next tip to improve efficiency in the workplace is to prioritise automation.
From scheduling meetings to social media posting to data entry, prioritising automation is the key to efficiency in the workplace.
Automation helps to maximise efficiency by removing repetitive tasks from employees’ to-do lists, freeing up valuable time to spend on more important tasks and other areas of the business that need urgent attention.
As well as improving efficiency, automation can help to reduce the likelihood of common manual issues occurring due to human error.
Another way to improve efficiency in the workplace is to encourage time blocking amongst employees.
Time blocking is a time management technique where you ‘plan your schedule for the day in advance by blocking every hour of your day for specific tasks and responsibilities’.
Time blocking helps to limit procrastination, reduce multitasking, and also makes the person time blocking prioritise one task for a specified amount of time.
While this might sound abnormal to some, time blocking is a way to enable your employees to take ownership of their responsibilities and the tasks that they need to complete in the week, helping to eliminate inefficiencies that encroach on their strict schedule.
Encouraging your team to time block helps them to set the necessary boundaries to ensure that they get their work done on time and to a high standard.
Last, but not least, to improve efficiency in the workplace you should delegate and promote accountability.
Failing to delegate is a mistake many business owners make in the first few years, predominately because ‘most entrepreneurs are driven to take a hands-on approach’.
However, this causes an inefficient bottleneck that quickly hinders a team, especially if they’re relying on sign-offs from busy founders that could have been delegated to managers or supervisors.
A lack of accountability in the workplace can result in a wealth of issues, including inefficiencies and career dissatisfaction if employees cannot see the direct impact they’re having on business.
Encouraging accountability in the workplace can help to encourage ownership and teamwork amongst employees.
Accountability gives employees the motivation to carry out their jobs to the best of their ability. As the success of that project is on their shoulders, this is an effective way to bring teams together to work collaboratively as opposed to competitively.
Conclusion: Improve Efficiency in the Workplace
In conclusion, improving efficiency in the workplace is not only beneficial for the employees, but also for the organization as a whole. By implementing some of the strategies discussed in this blog post, such as reducing unnecessary meetings, prioritizing automation, encouraging time-blocking, and using technology wisely, you can boost productivity, creativity, and satisfaction at work.
Efficiency is not about working harder, but working smarter. Remember, the quality of your work depends on the quality of your work environment.
We hope that this article has given you a better understanding of how to improve inefficiency in the workplace. Subscribe now to receive email notifications for new posts.
Written by Jemima Thomas for Configur, a software development company that puts data at the heart of everything.