Guide

Increase efficiency to maximise your profit

Improving working practices to boost efficiency

You can greatly improve your business efficiency by looking at current working practices, and making improvements where possible.

How to assess your working practices

Look at your staff and try to get an understanding of the tools they use for their tasks and how they approach them. It may also be worth thinking about:

  • staff morale - make sure you address any concerns they have, as a workforce will only be effective if they are motivated
  • training - staff should be aware of the tools available to them through training
  • flexible time management - you should explore working arrangements that suit individuals

For example, you can consider offering:

  • home working - removing the need to commute may increase staff time spent on the job
  • flexible working - this can lead to greater staff satisfaction and increased performance levels
  • sabbaticals - an unpaid break can be a good option if you wish to reduce staff but retain skills for periods of growth
  • flexible contracts - working from different locations or different hours

See flexible working - the law and best practice.

The assessment of your working practices can give you a framework for improving them and embedding new, more efficient ways of working.

How can you improve employee efficiency?

Your management practices can greatly influence the efficiency and the productivity of your employees. Make sure that you:

  • communicate well with staff
  • delegate responsibilities to the most qualified employees
  • manage performance through effective appraisal systems
  • give regular feedback to staff
  • offer training, development and mentoring opportunities to staff
  • consider offering incentives and perks to motivate staff

See more on staff motivation.

Finally, you should explore new technological solutions that could help your staff work in different ways, eg through remote working or virtual collaboration. You could also outsource certain IT tasks or automate processes to save staff time. Find out how to use technology to improve efficiency.