7 Ways to Improve Employee Efficiency
The end of the year is quickly approaching and many companies are starting their review process. Executives are planning the upcoming year. Managers are conducting employee reviews. As a whole, companies are working to see how to improve employee efficiency in 2018.
An increase in employee efficiency can have a large effect on your business. Less time wasted means less money wasted. Your employees will be able to do more work in less time. This is something that every business would like to accomplish.
Here are seven tips on how to improve employee efficiency.
1. Set clear goals
Employees can’t work efficiently if they don’t know what they are working towards. They need to know the goals their company is shooting for. When a company has SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound) goals in place, its teams can clearly set their goals, and then each employee understands his or her role in reaching that goal.
With goals in place, each department or team can hold a 15-minute meeting each week to see how they are doing. This is the time to make any necessary adjustments and ask for additional resources. Employees won’t waste time during work hours when everyone is on the same page.
2. Use instant communication tools
Speaking of communication, you should be able to communicate quickly and clearly with your employees. They always have their phones with them, so take advantage of that resource. Send text message reminders to your employees to help them remember important things or to tell them about an emergency.
One TextMagic client uses this strategy to remind employees of simple safety rules, such as “Please wear a helmet.” It takes only a few seconds to send one of these messages but can make a big difference. Reminding employees to wear their helmets could help them avoid a serious injury.
3. Train in communication
Queens University in Charlotte conducted a study that found only 27 percent of employees are trained in proper communication. The same study found that the same percentage of employees felt confident in their ability to communicate clearly.
Communication is an important part of every business. You need to spend time training your employees in this area. They will use these skills daily with co-workers and with customers. Employees who are confident in their communication skills can interact more efficiently with everyone.
4. Don’t wait for employee reviews
Things are changing in offices across America, and the trend will only continue as more millennials enter the workforce. Employees don’t want to wait for an annual review before they receive feedback. The same Queens University study quoted earlier found that 80 percent of millennials would prefer real-time feedback from their managers.
Making this change can actually benefit both you and your employees. If there is something that an employee could be doing better, it is easier to correct them in the moment then to wait for months for a full review. This will help them to make the necessary changes to improve their processes and work more efficiently.
5. Have meetings with a purpose
Much time is spent in business meetings, and as you know, in business time is money. One study found that as much as $37 billion is wasted every year in unproductive meetings. If you want to help your employees become more efficient, you might need to change how you handle your meetings.
Here are a few tips to get you started:
- If the topic can be communicated quickly through a phone call or an email, then do that instead of pulling everyone together for a meeting.
- Carefully decide who should attend each meeting. Include only those employees who need to be there.
- In every meeting, stick to the agenda. Keep your employees on topic and moving along.
6. Delegate and build leadership
Bad managers fail to delegate tasks and responsibilities. There are a number of reasons for this. Some doubt that their employees can handle the responsibility. Others are afraid of being replaced if they teach everything they know to the person working under them. But delegation has to be taught from the top down in an organization, to set the example.
If all the managers are leading their employees properly and helping them grow into leaders as well, the company will continue to grow, and there will always be room to move up and continue growing and learning. The first step in delegating is to hire competent employees and provide them with the training they need. If this is done, each team member can be sure that everyone is capable of doing their own job and learning more.
Delegation vastly improves efficiency because it stops one person, or a few people, from trying to run the business in its entirety. The tasks are distributed, and when everyone does their part the business runs smoothly and efficiently.
7. Encourage collaboration
Collaboration within a team is essential for every business to survive. When employees collaborate they take advantage of each other’s skills. They can work alongside someone with experience in an area instead of struggling through the task on their own.
More companies are going remote now, so new challenges arise. Make sure you create an environment that encourages team members to exchange their ideas and expertise. Test different collaboration tools and see which work for your business.
As you prepare for your business year-end and for the upcoming year, take time to help your employees become more efficient. Ask for their opinions. The employees working every day at your company will have good ideas about where improvements could be made. Listen to them and consider their suggestions. Happy employees are also productive employees.