- On July 26, 2023
- by: Rick Topping
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What business would ever say ‘no’ to improving their productivity?
It's a challenge that leaders often grapple with — how to ensure your teams run smoothly, and how to get the most value out of each day. You may be feeling frustrated as you struggle to see improvements in your organization's productivity. And you wouldn’t be alone, as productivity has decreased by 2.1% in the beginning of 2023.
What can businesses do when productivity levels are dropping at a rate unseen since 1948? With years of experience providing IT support in Pittsburgh, our team has observed a diverse range of organizations. For example, we’ve seen how they bolstered their remote employee productivity or internal workflows.
We’ve gathered those latest insights into this article so that you will have actionable steps to follow. Below, we’ll touch on how to identify bottlenecks, improve your communication, and leverage local Pittsburgh IT support.
Focus on Continuous Communication
Good communication is the oil that keeps the wheels of your organization going. Effective communication isn't just about sending emails or having a chat by the water cooler. It's the lifeblood of a productive workplace, as it directly impacts everything from daily operations to team morale.
How can you amp up communication in your organization? It's all about creating an environment where transparency is the norm, not the exception.
“While modest labor productivity growth is expected to return in 2023, the trend remains disappointing—posing serious long-term headwinds for the world economy.”
- Klaas de Vries, Senior Economist at The Conference Board, via "Global Productivity Growth Set to Disappoint Again in 2023”
Encourage people to share their ideas and voice their concerns. You'd be amazed at the innovative solutions that can come from a casual conversation!
Regular team meetings and updates aren't just about sharing information — they're opportunities to ask questions, align, and work out any blockers in a constructive setting.
Tip: Leverage a platform like Microsoft Teams to make it easy for everyone to have a central communication hub.
Let's not forget about the power of good conflict resolution strategies. Nipping any potential conflicts in the bud can save time and stress down the line. When your team communicates well, they work well. And when they work well, your workflows become smoother.
Consolidate Workflows & Identify Blockers
There are only so many hours in the day to get things done. To see a boost in productivity, it’s vital to look at your workflows and determine:
- What repetitive processes (like approval stages) can be cut out
- What key touch points need to happen and when
- How many routine blockers occur and how to remove them
To do this, start with a solid organizational system. Digital calendars, task management apps, or even traditional whiteboards can keep track of workflows and deadlines. This is your visual map to keep track of who's doing what and when.
Next, focus on prioritization. All workflows are not created equally: some are urgent, some are important, and some are both. Techniques like the Eisenhower Matrix can be very helpful.
Once this new map is created, you’ve taken a large step in eliminating unproductive cycles in your processes.
Don’t Forget to Keep Your Team in the Loop
This calls back to the above section where we discussed communication. If you are changing your organization’s workflow, your team(s) need to know about it.
That’s why it’s important to regularly update your employees to keep them knowledgeable of any changing workflows. If your team has the bandwidth, cross-training your staff helps ensure that the absence of one person doesn't halt an entire project.
However, to work efficiently, your team needs the proper tools to do what they do best.
Use Technology to Work Smarter & Faster
Harnessing the power of modern technology is not just a nicety — it's a necessity.
For example, things like local Pittsburgh cloud services and Microsoft 365 have transformed the way businesses operate. Both provide solutions that significantly impact productivity. The benefits of integrating modern technologies into your daily operations are substantial.
Learn more about how managed IT support has helped local Pittsburgh organizations work smarter and faster!
In fact, 78% of leaders have adopted cloud technology in part of their business. This has led to less costs, more business resilience, more revenue, and more. This technology can automate repetitive tasks, such as scheduling or invoicing, to free up your team to focus on more complex tasks.
It makes sense than that, despite economic uncertainty, 91% of CIO’s expect to maintain or increase their tech budget in 2023. Technical experts know that investing in IT will equip businesses to improve productivity.
But incorporating these technologies isn't a one-and-done affair. With technology constantly changing, it will always be an ongoing process. To ensure a smooth transition, you can leverage a managed IT support partner, who can guide you through each step.
“Some people think of IT as simply something they need to get their emails to work. However, from a business perspective, IT is a forced multiplier to help your employees work better and faster…IT is a business investment that is going to pay off in the long run. It’s the difference between one hour with a computer versus eight hours with pen and paper.”
- Sean Cassley, Network Account Engineer at Ceeva
Are You Ready To Work Smarter, Not Harder?
“Productivity’ is such an abstract concept that it can be hard to pinpoint direct actions to improve it. That’s why we've unpacked several things leaders can do to conquer this obstacle:
- Start by assessing your current communication practices and identifying areas for improvement.
- Next, evaluate your workflows for any potential bottlenecks or unnecessary steps.
- Then, consider implementing tools like Microsoft 365 or Teams to embrace the power of modern technology.