You ask your staff to ‘think outside the box’ but maybe it is time you did so too. There are some small changes you can implement right now – with minimal cost and disruption, to improve productivity in your office. Take the following steps to increase staff contentment and efficiency, because happy employees are productive employees.
Breaks are a Must
Rather than an obstacle to productivity, breaks are actually conducive to your employee’s output. The brain and body needs time to rest and refresh itself, particularly in today’s environment where eyes are fixated on an electronic device for long periods of time.
Adequate hydration is essential for overall health and well-being. It must not be overlooked in an air-conditioned or heated office. Encourage employees to keep a water bottle with them, and if you haven’t already done so, install a water dispenser to encourage employees to drink fresh, cool water to benefit their health.
Keep Digitally Organised
Train your staff on email organisation techniques, for example using folders, sub-folders, auto-reply and so on. Set aside an allotted time for checking emails and turn off notifications at other times to minimise distractions. Find out what software is available for your specific business needs, to enable employees to prioritise and schedule workloads.
Listen to Music
It has been proven that some people work better with background noise or music. Classical music has been associated with increased IQ levels. Consider though, not everyone will have the same taste in music or react positively to this idea – some people find music distracting, whilst others find it inspiring or soothing.
Keep Your Work Space Tidy
Physical objects and electronic documents will be easier to locate if the work space is tidy. Encourage staff to have a clear-out and implement a clear desk policy. Turning up to work to see a clear desk is much more welcoming than a cluttered one, and it sets you up for the day. Additionally, it creates a great impression, contributing towards a calmer, safer, and cleaner working environment.
Master Time Management
Time management is about knowing how to prioritise work by differentiating between what is urgent, and what is important. Employees should have a schedule or to-do list, with allotted time for tasks such as meetings or returning phone-calls. At the end of the working day, schedules should be updated and the work space left ready for the start of the next working day.
Digitise Document and Workflow
Digital records, and reducing or removing paper from workflows, means that as many people as necessary will have access to relevant documents and information at any one time. Imaging and data capture makes the information available across departments and beyond, improving workflow, decision-making and productivity.
Games may seem counter-intuitive to productivity, but those such as ping pong or pool encourage employees to move away from their workstation when it is time for a break. Not only is it good for the body and mind, but it encourages working relationships between employees, provides a place to meet and socialise, and injects a bit of fun into the workplace.
Plan-Create Your Work Day Ritual
Employees should get to their work station at least 15 minutes before the start of their working day to plan their workload. Most people will want to make a drink and perhaps socialise, so 15 minutes should really be the minimum. The first hour of the working day can be the most productive, so minimise distractions.
Lastly, so much time, money and effort is wasted with surplus printers, printer problems, service and labour of printers, supply expenditure, outdated machines, wasted paper, and unnecessary printing. A print management program reduces printing waste, cuts costs and increases employee productivity. You will be able to manage your printers, keep track of printing habits in the workplace, improve document and data security, and streamline the supply ordering process; thereby optimising efficiency.
Consider these ten ways to achieve a happier, more streamlined workplace. Not only will your business benefit from increased productivity, but less waste will save you time, money, and it is far better for the environment.