5 Ways to Increase Business Efficiency
Tags: Productivity   Stock  
21/09/2011 6:36 PM

Efficiency is more than just a buzzword. In increasingly crowded industries and marketplaces it's a key element to survival. Finding more efficient ways of achieving your business goals should be a constant aim for business owners. In this article, we'll look at some of the best ways to increase efficiency in your business, from ways to improve staff productivity to using ERP Software (enterprise resource planning).

1. Keep staff happy
It may seem counter-intuitive at first, but it's important to ensure your staff are not always focused on their job. They need down time to ensure their balance is maintained and they do not become stressed, disillusioned or bored with their work. This could be through organising fun activities such as sports events or team-building days. It could also be as simple as arranging a regular Friday afternoon BBQ or drinks to ensure morale stays high and good working relationships are formed. It also means not being too stingy when it comes to time off. Remember, employees have lives outside of work which may sometimes conflict with their work commitments. All of this will translate to a happier and more efficient workplace in the long run.

2. Offer training opportunities
This is the second part of the three-pronged approach to improving productivity in staff. Providing your employees with opportunities to improve themselves can have many benefits. Most directly, they will bring newfound knowledge to the workplace which may aid them in their company roles. Secondly, it shows them that as an employer you care about their individual improvement, building loyalty and aiding in staff retention. The increased skills and improved morale will have a positive effect on staff productivity and overall workplace efficiency.

3. Provide feedback
Third, in relation to increasing productivity in staff – and thus overall business efficiency – provide your staff with plenty of feedback about their performance. This goes a lot further than a simple pat on the back for a job well done every now and then (though that is important too!). It should involve letting your staff know how they are contributing to the business. Why are they valuable? In what areas could they improve? Employees don't want to be kept in the dark. By engaging them on a deeper level you'll help them feel more connected to your business.

4. Don't micromanage
As a business owner, you're probably keen to having a hands-on approach to all aspects of your business. However, as your business grows, trying to keep an eye on every aspect of your business is an extremely inefficient way to operate. Find staff members you can trust. Where possible, consider outsourcing elements of your business. This will allow you to focus on elements of your business where you can be most effective instead of concentrating on the minutiae of day-to-day tasks.

5. Use business software
Many businesses are still stuck in the past, managing various functions of their business in cumbersome, paper-filled filing cabinets. Newsflash: it's the 21st century and the business world has now gone electronic. Utilising Business Software tools such as ERP is a much more efficient way of operating. ERP software integrates all the regular functions of a business – including planning, quoting, inventory management, manufacturing, sales and marketing, accounting, and more – into one easily-accessible solution.

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