Making a profit is among your highest priorities as an entrepreneur. After all, if you don’t make money from your idea, you will not stay in business. As you look for ways to increase your efficiency and save money, don’t overlook these common-sense ways to reduce waste.
Invest in Technology
Many of the jobs that you do by hand can be accomplished more quickly and cheaply by a computer. Most scheduling systems and even some customer service functions are easier if you install widgets for them on your website. Explore data analytics systems such as the knowledge graph platform, and purchase time-tracking software for your employees to streamline your payroll. Don’t be afraid to try new programs, but once you purchase something, stick with it for at least a year. That way, you won’t waste money on system updates that just take care of a few minor issues.
Ask Your Employees’ Advice
You and your employees work in the same environment and perhaps even in the same room. However, your understandings of your workplace are very different. Certain people act differently depending on whether you’re in the room or not, so your employees know how people work when the boss isn’t watching. Employees also see your actions differently and probably have noticed habits of yours that waste time or resources. To access this valuable information, host town hall meetings, talk to employees one-on-one, and send out anonymous surveys. Remember, some of the information that you receive may not be flattering, but it is still valuable.
Cut Down on Meetings
Right now, you’re probably not having many meetings in person because of social distancing requirements. Still, you gather your staff together on Zoom or another videoconferencing platform several times a week to discuss important updates. While meetings are great ways to deliver a uniform message to your entire staff, they also waste time. When your employees are listening to you, they can’t be doing their jobs. This is particularly true of online meetings, when they are more likely to be checking social media than paying attention. Limit your full-staff meetings to one per week, and keep them shorter than an hour. Make a list of all the items you need to review and email it to your employees before the meeting begins. Go through the list, and then ask for questions. You’ll be surprised at how much more efficient your meetings are and how much more your employees pay attention.
Avoid Work Trips
Work trips are generally used to meet new clients, discuss matters with investors, and inspect new facilities. They’re useful networking tools, but they also cost lots of money and waste time. Avoid taking work trips whenever possible, and agree to meet your new business associates virtually.
Increasing efficiency is a hard process that takes lots of effort. You may not enjoy it, but unless you’re committed to cutting out waste, you’ll lose huge amounts of your profit. Soon, you’ll become used to your new method of doing business and you’ll wonder how you ever operated before.