While there are many challenges in the world of smaller businesses, having a smaller workforce doesn’t need to be one! With a little planning and organisation, you can ensure that your business has the same output and the same level of productivity as larger companies, and all without hiring more staff!
As one the biggest expenses you can face as a company is hiring, on-boarding, and then paying new members of staff, it’s really important to look at how you can get the most out of the workforce you have, and still get the results you want.
Have Clear Processes
One thing that can really eat into your team’s productivity is not having clear processes in place in your business. This can be simple things like who to email an invoice to, to more complicated things like the process of handing over a customer from one department to another.
Installing something like a knowledge base in a smaller company may feel like a waste of time, especially if your whole team is based on one office, and it would be really easy to just pop across to someone’s desk and ask them a question.
However, this can quickly become a problem for a number of reasons. Relying too much on knowledge from one or two members of staff can be risky because if they’re out of the office, or if they end up leaving the company, it could cause a breakdown in the way your company works. It also creates issues when on-boarding new members of staff, as it’s tricky to lay out all the processes you have in place if you don’t have them stored somewhere centrally.
Get each department to write up all their processes themselves, as it’s best to have the people who do this sort of thing every day writing the process to make sure it covers every stage effectively. You can then decide where would be the best place to store them so that they are easily accessed by everyone in the company, and easy to keep updated as your processes evolve. If you’re a current Administrate customer, you can use our knowledge base feature to store all your company documents, so your staff always know where to look when they need some help.
Let Software Help
If you have a small team of staff, it’s imperative that you are always getting the most out of them. While most jobs will have some administration or repetitive tasks that need to be completed as part of their day-to-day role, these can quickly eat into your staffs’ time and mean they are spending less time on more specialist tasks that only they can complete.
One way to tackle this is to see where you can use software to do elements of jobs for your staff, leaving them to focus on the bits that only they can do, to make sure everything still gets done on time.
Here are some examples of systems or software that you might want to implement to help ease the load on your small team:
- Email marketing software – Sending marketing emails can be a vital part of your Marketing team’s strategy, but if you have a lot of marketing tracks going at once, all sending different tailored emails, this can be a lot of maintenance, and a lot of manual sending. Email marketing software can make this whole process a lot easier, as you can schedule emails to send in advance, as well as setting up email tracks which will automatically send certain emails to prospects or customers at certain times. Making the move to software like this means you can plan and set up your marketing email campaigns, and then leave them to run on their own, confident that the emails will be sent when they need to be, without you lifting a finger. It also makes it easy to edit your campaigns or add in any additional emails when you need to.
- Survey software – If you need to survey your customers, potential customers, or even past customers, a survey tool like SurveyMonkey is a great way of creating completely personalised surveys in just a few clicks, sending them to your contact list, and then pulling the results back in for easy comparison and measurement. Tools like SurveyMonkey cut down on the time you would spend trying to create a good looking survey yourself, and prevent you from having to send all the emails manually, as well as having to deal with and record all the responses yourself. SurveyMonkey also integrates with Administrate, so you can send surveys directed to contact lists you have already built within Administrate, and even pull the responses back into our reporting system for easy comparison.
- Training management software – If you need something to manage all the administration tasks within your training company, training management software could be the answer to all your problems. A training management system like Administrate can help you do things like produce reports in an instant, set up email triggers to cut down on manual email sends, and pull data from Administrate and display it on your website, which will cut down on duplicate data entry! You can check out our previous blog post on why we think Administrate is the training management platform to rule them all here and decide for yourself!
Let Your Team Grow
If you want to get more from your small team, you need to let them grow and develop in their role. Not only will not giving them the chance to complete further training be bad for team morale in the workplace, it could also lead to your staff leaving your business. This can be a disaster for a smaller company, as whole departments can be run by one person, so staff turnover can have a huge effect on your whole business.
A great way to do this in a smaller business is with eLearning. Even as a training company yourself, it’s important to provide excellent training and development opportunities to your staff, and eLearning gives you the chance to do this without losing your staff for large chunks of time to classroom-based training sessions. This means your staff will still be able to schedule training into their work week, but it won’t affect their output, as they simply complete bits and pieces whenever they have some spare time, rather than setting aside huge chunks of time to complete longer sessions.
eLearning can allow you to set up the exact courses you need all your staff members to complete, and you can personalise your training plans for each individual person. This also allows you to ask your staff what sort of learning they are interested in themselves, and tailor their learning journey to fit both your needs and their expectations.
If you already provide eLearning to your customers, it will be really easy for you to set up online learning for your staff as well, and if you use Administrate you can use our built-in Learning Management System (LMS) for an amazing eLearning experience.
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