2020 has forced many companies to finally allow their employees to work from home or any other remote location outside the office.
However, what was once considered a perk reserved for the truly lucky is now getting exposed for what it really is: a cruel reality that blurs the personal and professional aspects of one’s life and leaves more workers busier and more exhausted than ever.
As a business owner, the onus is on you to streamline the workflow for your employees to prevent remote work burnout. By making sure that the work gets done over a much shorter time period than usual, you can help your team avoid working round the clock just to accomplish the work they normally do in one office shift.
Here’s how you can streamline business processes in this era of remote work.
Assess Your Current Workflow
As they say, you really can’t fix something that isn’t broken. Before you implement any changes, make sure you thoroughly assess how your team gets things done first. List down your entire business process and be aware of what each team/department does to get the process moving.
Your goal here is to find out how far along you are in terms of the level of efficiency you want to achieve. If your goal is to reduce daily work hours from eight to just six or less, you have to identify which aspects of your operations you can speed up.
During your assessment, it is important to note the hurdles and obstacles your people face while trying to hit their daily goals. For a more accurate assessment, refrain from assuming bottlenecks and actually ask your people about their workflow and how they think the work could be simplified.
As business people, we might have a tendency to overcomplicate and micromanage things. Since we are currently out of the traditional office setup, you would have to trust that your people can manage well on their own.
Instead of forcing them to adhere to how you’ve always done things at the office, allow them the freedom and independence to find solutions on their own, so long as they manage to hit their targets.
Anything that can be done by an automated system should be left to the machines, or else these simple, menial tasks can simply eat away at your employees’ precious time.
There is a lot of powerful software that can take care of data entry, work allocation, and progress-tracking so that your people can focus on what’s important and do their jobs more efficiently. Either you can hire a Data Entry Outsourced for data management-related tasks.
Automating your processes is also one of the best ways to keep overhead costs under control. Process mining software like Apromore can help understand and analyze your business performance and outcomes without extra hours to your employee.
All of us have no choice but to cut costs right now, and it is crucial that you channel your resources to things that truly matter instead of paying people to work extra hours for things that a software program can do.
Explore Other Solutions
What basic work management software can’t do, a highly efficient software program like JDE Software can take care of.
If you didn’t think complex jobs like finance management, customer relationship management, and supply chain management can be entrusted to a system, then you obviously have a lot of catching up to do in terms of newer, better, and more efficient technology.
Always explore existing business solutions you can implement so that your remote workers don’t have to do everything by themselves.
Assess Your New Workflow
Now that you’ve put in place several new tools and systems that are poised to streamline your workflow, you might think that your job is done. That’s hardly true since you have to constantly check if the new workflow is working for your team, which leaves the question of employee productivity levels at hand.
As with anything else, there are going to be some birth pains after you introduce a new workflow or business process. You have to be more hands-on at this point in terms of acclimating your employees with the new process.
Ultimately, you need to be making sure everyone is benefitting from your much-improved and newly-streamlined business process.
You might want to slow it down, too, and make the transition gradual. The last thing you want to do is overwhelm people when your intention is to make remote work easier for everyone.
Ask For Feedback
Again, the best way to find out if the new workflow is working is by asking your people what they think about it.
First, give them a safe space to talk about how the new process is affecting them and their remote work setup. Then, identify whether their concerns are things that just take getting used to or if they’re things you can actively improve.
Always make yourself available for feedback and suggestions on how you can streamline the business process further.
Refine and Adjust
Finally, you have to accept that no workflow is ever going to be perfect or good enough for everyone involved. Be prepared to adjust and refine your new system every now and then until you come up with a new normal that’s workable for the majority of your team.
It goes without saying that the world’s current situation is like nothing we’ve ever seen before. Quite frankly, not all businesses can survive a crisis as big as the one we’re facing right now. In the end, though, it all boils down to which businesses are most resilient and adaptive to change. Make sure you stay ahead of the curve with a streamlined business process that not only saves money and time but also keeps your remote workers satisfied and, of course, well-rested.