In operating a business, productivity monitoring plays a very crucial and essential role. It is from the output of employees that business owners can calculate profits as well as returns on investment.
Business owners should understand the importance of the early stages of data collection. This is where you need to set and re-examine attainable goals with your staff members. In doing so, you can talk about ways or methods you can use to meet these goals. Of course, after the planning and consultation period, productivity reports should be delivered to you at a set period of time. Depending on the type or the size of your business, productivity monitoring reports can be submitted daily, weekly, bi-monthly, monthly, quarterly and/or annually. As mentioned, base this on what you’ve discussed on planning meetings with your staff members.
Through these productivity reports you’ll be able to see and analyze if there are problems in your business or if business productivity seems to be creating good returns of investment. The statistics gathered over a long period of time would indicate if there are situations or concerns you may need to address.
Before you do anything else in your business, planning is the key element you need to focus on. It is from this stage that the success or failure of a business is molded. Here is a short guide to help you succeed in your planning stage:
Step 1 – Set productivity measures you want to track.
Keep in mind that in a business, there are different departments. This means, in each department, different work is done so output should also be different. So if you want to measure productivity, you need to use different measures as well. Think of it this way – for customer service personnel, can you measure their productivity just by the number of calls they take? Of course not. You measure their productivity by the number of satisfied customers they were able to address or help. This also goes for sales agents, their productivity would be based on their closed deals.
Step 2 – Come up with effective methods to gather data.
If you are running a big business, you will have a hard time monitoring your staff if you don’t set effective methods. Large firms use computers and Internet access to generate and log reports. As for small businesses, even manual methods would do. If you’re not familiar with the manual method, research about the use of “tick sheets” or other related methods.
Step 3 – Gather data in a timeframe that can fit your needs.
As mentioned earlier, whether you prefer daily reports, weekly reports or monthly reports, these reports should be useful in keeping you abreast on your staffs productivity. Consider the possibility of mid-month changes on directives, quotas or even on staffing.
Step 4 – Use a spreadsheet.
A spreadsheet is very useful in saving collected data. It is also more convenient than writing things down because it is customizable and interactivity is possible. It also features different tabs you can use for a broader database. Some of the most used spreadsheets are Microsoft Excel, Open Office Calc and Mac Numbers.
Step 5 – Monitor productivity monitoring data.
If you collect reports daily, weekly or monthly, make sure you check on them and you keep tabs. It is in monitoring productivity that you can determine if one of your departments is succeeding or failing in their tasks.
Step 6 – Find effective ways to address low productivity.
Once you analyze and make a conclusion about the reports you’ve been receiving, make sure you take time to focus on low productivity. Find ways to resolve the matter. You can talk it over with your department heads. Ask them for insights and observations. This will help you understand productivity problems and come up with ways to address them. Common ways to address low productivity are disciplinary actions and warnings.
Step 7 – Find ways to reward low productivity.
One way to keep your staff members or employees motivated, especially if they’re showing high productivity is to reward them. You don’t need to be extravagant in doing so. A simple praise would be highly appreciated.
Through productivity monitoring reports you can check on your staff or employees productivity. This way, you’ll know if there are issues or concerns that you need to address or work on, especially if these are already affecting your business’ profits and returns of investment. On the other hand, this is also a good way to praise or employees that are doing well or exceeding in their tasks.