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Tips on increasing productivity

When we talk to companies about what they’d like help and support with, the answer is often improving productivity, so several of the free business support workshops we run tackle issues which could help with the productivity of your organisation.

Whether you’re talking about a service industry organisation or a manufacturing business, productivity can make or break a company and the health of its bottom line.  The most powerful thing you can do is embrace technology; allowing your workforce to work flexibly and have high-speed connectivity in order to collaborate effectively with colleagues and customers wherever they are in the world.  Here is our top 12 list of things that can help improve a company’s productivity when allied with that technology:

1. Great internal communications – ensuring that your workforce understands what is required of them and what impact their efficient working will make to the success of the business is vital.

2. Happy employees – research has shown that a happy workforce simply gets more done than unhappy and depressed staff. You only have to look at the way productivity levels drop in businesses which are undergoing consultation on redundancies to see that.  Often simple praise for a job well done can raise morale and motivation.  Other things that can help ensure a happy workforce are setting achievable goals, incentive schemes and performance reviews.

3. Plan your day with an action list of things you can tick off as you go.

4. Make all meetings productive, with short agendas and minutes containing action points and deadlines for each attendee so that everyone is reminded of what is expected of them and by when.

5. Protect a minimum of 90 minutes per day to focus on tasks that must be done (do this by turning off email and telephone calls for that period wherever possible). If your mobile is off but still buzzes, it can lead to lost concentration, if your email pings, likewise.  Eliminate any distractions – such as things that pop into your head that you must remember to do – by keeping a blank sheet of paper to write them down on a list which you can attend to later.

6. Keep a clutter-free workspace so that you can see when something new has arrived on your desk.

7. Tackle the most difficult jobs when you are fresh and have the brain space to deal with them.

8. Keep hydrated – a fit and healthy employee will be more productive.

9. Utilise continuous improvement or Kaizen, which is a way to make small incremental improvements to your processes; these add up to big improvements in overall efficiency and quality.

10. Adopt manufacturing processes like Lean Manufacturing, Right first time and/or Just in time – all of these can help manufacturing productivity and keep stock levels tight – sign-up for one of our workshops to find out more.

11. Adopt new technologies to save you time, for example, Messenger apps on your website, a Messenger app that can answer frequently asked questions on your behalf on your Facebook page, a live chat facility direct to the sales department on your website.

12. Use virtual reality to map out any potential changes on the factory floor or in the office and work out if they would improve your productivity.