When it comes to your business, efficiency is probably one of your main goals. Efficiency means more work getting done in less time, ultimately saving you money. However, it can be surprisingly difficult sometimes to identify exactly how you can become more efficient.
Talk to People
Starting by talking to your employees, customers and perhaps some vendors you work with to see if there are specific areas they see where you could be more efficient. This can offer a perspective you might not have considered yet. It can also give you an idea of what people’s priorities are. For example, if you are worried about one aspect of serving your customers and feel that you should be doing it more quickly but you find out your customer is actually concerned about something different, you won’t waste time on the less important element. You may not always be able to address concerns raised in these conversations, but at least you will be aware of them.
Know the Right Tools
Efficiency can also simply come down to having the ideal tools for the job. It’s worth doing some research to find out what these tools might be. If fleet management is an aspect of your business, you can use GPS fleet tracking software and solutions. This helps you gather real time data and can save you money as well as help with compliance issues.
Automation can help you do certain things quicker and more cheaply. It can also mean that you free up your best employees to work on more complex tasks. This is the case for companies that use chatbots for customer service. These tools can act as a kind of triage, answering simple questions and routing more difficult ones to real humans. They can also be used in some in-house contexts, such as in answering basic human resources questions about benefits. Sending out invoices and generating certain types of reports are also processes that are commonly automated.
Delegate and Outsource
It can be hard to let go of the idea that you will have the best solution to every problem, but you might have an easier time doing so if you remind yourself that this can lead to greater efficiency. The professionals you need to hire when starting out were hired by design, and with this type of opportunity in mind. Unless you run a very small enterprise, you can’t do everything yourself, so you need to learn to train others and delegate them to deal with certain issues. You should also look into what you may be able to outsource. For example, you may not need a full-time bookkeeper, but having someone work on the books a few hours per week or month can allow you to focus on other tasks.
Hiring and training new employees costs money. On top of that, losing employees can mean losing institutional knowledge. Even when it seems like it might be cheaper to replace more experienced employees with entry-level workers, this may well be a false economy. Focus on employee satisfaction and development and retaining the team that you do have.