- Employee engagement is recognised as vital to a business's productivity according to the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development.
- Effectively trained staff are more motivated and happier.
- Business inefficiencies can cost up to 30% of revenue and confusing your customer with poor customer experience will lose sales.
- Remote working offers significant increases in business productivity.
- Effective ways to communicate and collaborate are essential to driving business productivity
Why improve business consistency?
Improving the consistency of your service delivery in your business translates directly onto your bottom line. Additional revenue and profit will be derived from the improvements in how your business is run, its increased efficiency and the associated success you will garner.
However, to achieve the prosperity that your company and its employees richly deserve, you might need to make a few tweaks to how you operate and the systems you currently use.
1. Why employers are responsible for employee consistency
One of the most crucial aspects of improving business productivity comes from your staff. If they are engaged, motivated, valued and allowed an opinion they will be more invested in the prosperity of the company and will work harder and more effectively to ensure the success of your organisation.
Effectively trained staff are more motivated and happier.
So how can you effectively engage your employees?
Firstly, by being an effective manager. Giving your employees a voice so that they can relay their concerns and be confident that they will be listened to.
Secondly, by empowering your staff to make the decisions that they need to make to improve your customer's experience and help retain them over the long term.
And finally, motivate them to continually improve their own productivity and effectiveness and recognise their achievements.
2. Employee training and development boosts consistency
When your employees understand the job that they do, from reasons behind their role to the technical skills they need to develop to be effective, they will be engaged, motivated and productive.
Employee engagement is recognised as vital to a business's productivity according to the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development
By providing regular in-house training and development to your staff you will not only be facilitating their ability to perform their role, you’ll be increasing their job satisfaction, improving efficiencies in the job processes, raising motivation and morale and lowering employee turnover.
Succession training and development is vital. If your employees know that they’ll be given the opportunity to progress within the company and they will be developed to allow them to take on additional responsibilities, they’ll strive to succeed will consequently be more productive and engaged.
3. How to identify business inconsistencies
Business inefficiencies can cost up to 30% of revenue. Every business, irrespective of size, suffers from inefficiencies that impact on its bottom line and the productivity of its staff. The skill comes from rooting out these inefficiencies, from the obvious to the hidden and obscure, to make your business more streamlined and a less frustrating place to work.
When you want to begin the process of streamlining and improving the way you run your company a great starting point is to have detailed conversations with the people at the sharp end – your employees. They work, day in day out, with the processes that you currently have in place and will be able to offer valuable insights into ways of increasing business consistency and ironing out any bugs.
As an owner or manager having a ‘there must be a better way’ mindset is essential. Taking the time to look carefully at each department and ask yourself if there would be a better way of operating, what it is and then making the necessary changes.
4. Inconsistent customer experience will lose you sales
In addition to looking at how your internal processes work to overcome inconsistent service delivery, put yourself in your customers' shoes to see how easy it is for them to do business with you.
If your customers are finding your website confusing to navigate and give up before they place an order, your online user experience needs attention.
As an increasing number of product research and purchase decisions are being made on smartphones and tablets, would an app simplify their buying experience and take pressure away from your tele sales team?
5. Automate the tedious tasks to improve consistency
Artificial intelligence and robotics are becoming increasingly common in today’s workplace and they are having a positive impacton business productivity.
Automating tedious, repetitive and mundane tasks as the dual benefit of freeing up your employees to do tasks that require critical thinking or to improve your customer’s experience and boosting the motivation and morale of your employees, which will also drive an increase in productivity.
6. Remote working - proven to improve staff consistency
Remote working offers significant increases in staff productivity. If you want your business to be more productive, then looking at remote and flexible working might be the way forward.
When Best Buy introduced a flexible work programme 65% of its employees reported being more productive working from home and 64% said they would sacrifice pay to be able to work remotely.
Job satisfaction and employees feeling valued are important parts of business productivity. Tech behemoth’s Facebook and Google truly understand how to incentivise their employees to achieve greater productivity with perks.
You don’t need to provide massage rooms, nap pods or free haircuts but investing in your staff in a small but meaningful way will certainly improve morale and drive productivity.
7. How to improve consistency within teams working together.
An important part of improving the productivity of your business is simplifying the ways that your employees collaborate with each other.
Whether this is a simple as having a company Google account so that your employees can offer input or edit documents and spreadsheets in Google Docs and Google Sheets to formal project management software, the time savings can be impressive.
Trello is an inexpensive collaboration tool that allows the entire team to see what needs to be completed on a project and review tasks that have been assigned to them. Usefully, it also integrates seamlessly with apps your team is probably already using such as Dropbox, Evernote, and Google.
8. Tools to make consistent communication a cinch
Easy communication between departments and remote offices is as important as easy collaboration.
Slack, a messaging app allows communication and collaboration between teams, company-wide or just members of a specific project. It also allows for voice and video calls if needed and will integrate with all the apps you already use.
Other communications options include Skype, Zoom and Basecamp.
9. Interpersonal conflict and how to deal with it
The flipside to improving business productivity happens when a company doesn’t have effective conflict resolution procedures in place.
Conflict at some point is inevitable and if it is left unresolved can impact on the productivity of the team or business. Addressing the situation head on, calmly and professionally is key to getting beyond the issue and back to work.
Defining what is acceptable behaviour in the office can help avoid conflict but when it happens it is important that it is dealt with calmly and effectively, to maintain a productive environment.
Good communication is key in discovering the issue and addressing it to avoid losing key staff due to ineffective management.
10. Other workplace issues impacting on service consistency
Conflict can have a negative and corrosive impact on the atmosphere in an office but other workplace issues can be equally destructive if not identified and dealt with.
Inadequate training can lead to unnecessary errors that take time to correct and lack of support from line managers can lead to confusion and poor task management if an employee has no idea what needs prioritising.
Leading on from inadequate support is unrealistic expectations of what one person can achieve in a given time and this can be equally demotivating and lead to stress and anxiety.
To avoid all of these issues, the key is good communication.
If you are aware of your team's capabilities, have a training schedule in place to address knowledge gaps and are in regular contact with them so they know what is required and they don’t get into a situation where they are overwhelmed, they will be able to work more effectively.
Improving business consistency and business productivity isn’t a single task that will magically transform your business, but a combination of a number of areas that need to be addressed to get your business productivity to where you’d like it to be.
Your most important asset is your staff, look after their needs to ensure they’re motivated and productive and you can only succeed.
We can help bring greater consistency and clarity to your business, to help increase your productivity and profitability long-term. Find out more.