In previous blogs, we have talked about why now is the time to innovate and why we believe that those businesses who are preparing for the future now are the ones that will ultimately succeed. But where do you start?
When I am talking to clients, I am encouraging them to think about how they can make their business more efficient by making small changes that can hugely improve their operating efficiency. A really good example of a small change having a big impact is using technology to process invoices and receipts. A long and manual process which when replaced by technology can save you time and money.
For many, the move to home working or operating with reduced staff will have highlighted inefficient processes or ones that are open to error and cause headaches further down the line. This ends up costing managerial time to unravel and fix, whilst risking damaging customer loyalty. Finding and fixing these tasks are a great place to start.
I thought I would share a process to help you identify time sinks, unnecessary obstacles, and potential opportunities to get you ready for when the market comes back into full swing.
Do your due diligence
Write a list of every stage of the business process under your remit, or where you have most concerns. Then answer the following questions for each one
What: Think about the task – should this be done manually or could it be automated. If errors at this stage could cause problems, should it be automated or tested for accuracy in some way?
Who: Which person or people is responsible for doing those actions? If they were unavailable would someone else be able to get into the necessary systems to complete the task? Is it covered by multiple people and does that cause issues?
How: What knowledge is required for the task to be completed? Is that information readily available or hard to find? Is it a multi-step task that could be streamlined?
Where: Can the task be done when offline / working from home / on site? Could someone complete the task on their phone and would this help?
Why: Is this task absolutely necessary? Does it add significant value to the overall process? Is there an opportunity to leverage it further, if only you had time?
You’ve just created a wealth of information on your business process! Where are the biggest problems or opportunities? Are any of them related, by type of task, type of problem or type of opportunity?
Talk through your issue list with your technical team to see what ideas they can come up with. There may be some quick wins or a case for a bigger investment which will provide greater impact.
If you need a little more help
We’ve helped clients at each stage of this journey and always enjoy getting to know new businesses and talking through ideas. If you want to chat through your ideas, then you can book a call with one of our tech experts.