There are many factors that drive business success – a great product or service people need, establishing a strong brand, gaining a significant share of the market, profit margins, and the list goes on. But one of the most important pieces of the puzzle is the productivity of your company’s workforce. Why? There’s a surprisingly direct connection between productivity and profitability. When you focus on improving work performance in your company, the following six tips will put you on the path to success.
1. Workforce Management for Improving Work Performance
For most companies, labor is the most expensive item on the balance sheet. You can get a lot more bang for your buck if you make use of workforce management tools that help everyone work smarter. This is especially true for your HR administrative staff who have to handle all the details around tracking leave time, employee scheduling, time-clock management, training and learning programs, HR documentation and more. Do your company a favor and select the right web-based, software-as-a-service (SaaS) workforce management software solution to streamline all those workforce-related administrative tasks.
2. Assess and Improve All Workflows
If your company has been around a while or has gone through significant growth and yet seems to be struggling to get the work done, this is often an indication that you need to re-examine your major workflows. What worked well several years ago may no longer be the best way to do things. To get more out of the dollars you spend on labor and materials, you need to periodically assess all workflows within a framework of process optimization. It could be as simple as replacing outdated equipment, or it could be as complicated as overhauling production techniques from beginning to end. Remember to include the workers themselves in this workflow assessment process – chances are good that they will have ideas about where to make improvements.
3. Measure it if You Want to Manage it
Everyone has heard the adage that you can’t manage something if you’re not measuring it. Management guru Peter Drucker put it this way: “What gets measured, gets managed.” This holds true for nearly every aspect of starting, building and maintaining a successful business, including work performance and productivity. If improving work performance is going to become a priority, you have to figure out how to measure it in a meaningful way to know if your efforts are successful. You’ll want to think about all the possible performance metrics that apply to your company, then create a list of key performance indicators (KPIs) that capture the ones that matter most. Once you figure out what’s important to measure, then you have to figure out how to make it happen. Ideally, you’ll have the right software tools available to automate the data collection and reporting. When you implement plans for improving work performance, you’ll be able to easily see the impacts of your efforts.
4. Strategically Outsource Some of the Work
With the rise of the gig economy and an increasing number of freelancers and freelancing platforms, there are many opportunities to outsource some pieces of the productivity puzzle, often at a much lower cost than hiring people to handle it in-house. Keeping all your core workflows under your direct control makes sense, but how many non-essential workflows could be outsourced? You’ll get what you need while saving money on operating costs and administrative overhead. Whatever you may need, there are freelancers out there doing it for far less than it would cost you to handle it in-house.
5. Flexible Scheduling and Telecommuting for Improving Work Performance
Employees who are given the opportunity to achieve a better work/life balance will be happier and more productive. Many companies still don’t trust their employees enough to engage in flexible scheduling or telecommuting, but as long as you’re setting good key performance indicators and goals for each employee, you’ll know if you’re getting what you need from them as you grant them greater flexibility in scheduling (perhaps a four-day work week if they can get everything done) or working remotely from home a couple days a week. As long as their performance is what you need it to be, give them the options that will keep them happy.
6. Employee Training for Improving Work Performance
One of the surest ways of improving work performance among your employees is to make sure the receive whatever training they need in order to reach peak performance. Imagine a scenario where one of your KPIs has to do with sales, which simply aren’t where they should be. When you dig into the data and observe your salespeople in action, you realize that they’re losing a lot of sales because they aren’t good at answering the questions prospective customers ask. You realize your sales training programs are woefully out of date. Rolling out a new training program is going to be a whole lot easier if you have the right learning management system (LMS) in place.
An LMS will helps you make your training available to those who need it, track who has completed trainings, and evaluate what participants learned from the training. With well-defined, measurable learning objectives in place, you’ll soon know how effective the training was by measuring its impact in post-training performance. Going back to the sales example, let’s say you documented that your sales staff were only successfully answering 65% of the questions asked. After figuring out what specific kinds of questions are the ones your salespeople aren’t good at answering, you create a training program to give them the skills and knowledge they need to do better. Your broad learning objective for the training might be to improve the successful answer rate to 95% within six weeks of training.
Ready to take your employees to the next level by improving work performance? Discover how the eLeaP LMS can deliver the training solution you need. This cloud-based, easy-to-use system comes with all the features needed for training success, is available at affordable monthly pricing, and includes a library of 850+ training videos on a variety of topics. Sign up for a free 30-day trial to learn how eLeaP can help your company!