As a small business, it’s more important than ever that you stay as efficient as possible. This means maximizing your turnover and profit while at the same time minimizing expenditure. This doesn’t mean cutting costs to such a degree that it has a negative effect on your company. The true essence of streamlining means utilizing what you have wisely and spending money, if needed, to see long term benefits to the running of your business. The streamlining process gives you, as a business owner, the opportunity to sit down and reflect on what is going well in your company and what you could do better. Take a look at these three simple tips to get your business on the road to streamlining.
Get On Top Of Wastage
Waste comes in many forms, whether this is water, electricity, paper or lighting. Take a look at every aspect of your company and the resources that it uses. If you are a business that relies heavily on paperwork, could you cut your paper usage? How many times do you clear up the paper tray on your desk, only to put 90% of it in the bin? Cutting this wastage will save your company money and time. Investigate ways of using less paper, whether this is something as simple as printing double sided instead of single sided or not printing anything out at all unless deemed absolutely necessary.
Ask your employees how they feel about the amount of paper taking up valuable office space. The chances are that they will be on board with any potential solution to your paper problem as it’s as much a nuisance to them as it is an inefficiency to you.
Although it may seem a little tedious, encourage your employees to switch off lights, shut down their computers fully at the end of the working day and ensure all photocopiers and printers aren’t left on overnight. You’ll be surprised how the savings stack up.
Consolidate Your Phone System
If you are a business that relies on communications and sales, it is imperative that you have a streamlined phone system. You don’t want to use a specific phone dialing software that retrieves the phone numbers that you need to call from another software package, only to be then inputting data from the phone call onto a separate database. The essence of streamlining here is to create a more efficient telephone system that saves time and boosts productivity. By utilizing the Natterbox system, you can fully integrate all the facets your phone system into one place. This means that there is complete functionality in a wholly intuitive way, freeing up your salespeople or call center agents to make and take more calls.
The reliability of your call center infrastructure enables you, as a business, to concentrate more on customer experience. Streamlining this aspect of your business ensures efficiency savings as well as a more productive and content workforce.
Meeting your colleagues at other sites, clients at business lunches and potential new contacts at a conference are all feasible reasons to incur travel costs for your business. However, there will be times such as flying to Hamburg to meet Herr Bruner for a two-hour meeting to discuss the fact that he is only thinking about putting more business your way, that may be a wasted opportunity. This not only takes you out of the office for a couple of days but it’s also an expense that could be better spent elsewhere. In the world of FaceTime, Skype and WebEx, many meetings can now be conducted from the comfort of your office chair.
This is not to say that all meetings should be organized in this way. In fact, it should be of paramount importance to meet face to face with your client or potential supplier at every initial meeting. This shows courtesy and respect, and demonstrates that you actually want to travel to them to meet them personally and get to know them. After this, it may not be appropriate for you to head off to a business meeting that involves five hours of travel there and back. For one day to be consumed by one meeting screams inefficiency. Try a conference call instead. Grasp the technology that is available to your business and utilize it.
Streamlining your business is all about looking ahead to futureproof your business. You want your business to succeed and thrive within a competitive market. The most effective way to achieve your goal is to discover the benefits of streamlining.