Few aspects are more infuriating than failing to complete tasks at work. The office should be a hub where people can get their job done. However, disruptions, inadequate working conditions, and a shortage of funding often hinder employee productivity. As a result, people do less high-quality work and waste too much time searching for conference rooms or a distraction-free environment. Here are seven ways your office team can free your employees from the things that keep them from doing their best work.
What exactly does being efficient at work necessarily involve?
But first, let’s agree on a definition of workplace efficiency. What exactly does that mean? Productivity is often associated with doing a vast volume of work, but it is much more than that.
When workers reach true success, they do not only get a lot done, but their job is of good quality, and they finish it quickly. Productive employees are more committed at work, are happier with their careers, and have higher morale.
Manage office capacity and ensure that on-site workers have access to the workspaces they need. Establish specific rules for meeting room usage, such as setting a minimum occupancy for larger meeting spaces. Finally, use room management tools to help staff locate and book a room that meets their needs, preventing workspaces from being over-booked and under-utilized.
Employees turn between an average of 13 applications 30 times a day, according to Asana’s Anatomy of Work Index 2021 survey, fragmenting connectivity and reducing productivity. Integrating workplace software allows staff to do more work while still ensuring that the company performs more efficiently.
Collaborate with the IT team to incorporate emerging workplace innovations with your current technology stack. Examine existing technology to ensure that the company isn’t wasting resources on obsolete or underutilized tools. To ensure that people have what they need to be competitive, evaluate the tech stack at least twice a year with feedback from IT and your staff.
Accessible and dependable infrastructure is a major explanation why people choose to work on-site. However, where technology is difficult to use, it can be irritating and time-consuming. Even simple technologies will turn people off if they believe it will be too difficult to use and will be more hassle than it is worth. Be sure to invest in customer training and integration to optimize the ROI of your technology transactions to enable people to see the benefit.
Build a community in which your workers are trained to use modern technologies. Keep quarterly engineering training to empower employees to make the most of their workspace. Consider having monthly office hours to answer questions about workplace technology. Finally, hold the best practice book in each conference room so that people can quickly self-serve and troubleshoot problems when they arise.
To allow workers to do their best work, the office can have a variety of room styles. People would be able to find the best place for their needs whether they are on-site for collective or heads-down jobs. Another thing to think of is space management. People can perform more efficiently if they are not concerned with being ill. Thoughtful room preparation would enable workers to maintain a comfortable distance when working on-site and concentrate on the tasks at hand.
Ask workers if they choose to use the workspace and adapt suitable room styles to their requirements. If you have this knowledge, you can start to manage your room to meet these needs. Be sure the office has a variety of rooms. Have places for teamwork, casual meetings, and peaceful reflection. Consider if it is better to give individuals a permanent workspace or a temporary workspace, such as hot desks. You might also have a combination of the two. Other kinds of spaces to remember include designated team zones and huddle spaces.
Many studies (including this one) have found a correlation between autonomy and productivity. Giving people a say when they come to work is one of the easiest ways to give them more control. Allowing workers to set their schedules might not be feasible. However, you should design office plans that enable workers to work from anywhere, so that when they do go to work, they are more deliberate about how they spend their time.
Your team should question itself, “What is the highest number of employees who can be present at the office at the same time?” What staff or agencies must be present, and why must they be present? Can this schedule accommodate our workers’ need for flexibility? Read our article on creating employee schedules that allow for flexibility.
Employees are inspired and engaged at work because they have opportunities for personal and professional development. As previously said, these are critical factors in increasing efficiency. Although workforce development has historically been the responsibility of HR and management, workplace teams play a critical role in facilitating it. The office should serve as a forum for events that help workers reach their full potential.
Partner with HR to encourage your employees to use the workplace in ways that benefit them outside the workplace. Create an engaging workplace in which employees can take part in events such as company-wide skill seminars and monthly one-on-one skill exchanges. This would contribute to the development of a learning and growth atmosphere in the workplace and increase the investment in employee education. Encourage attendance by telling staff about upcoming activities at all-hands meetings and through Slack.
Finally, the only way to find out if the office is fulfilling your workers’ expectations, is to question them. This will assist the staff in understanding what it can do to provide a workplace where people can go to do better work. It will also motivate the staff and pique their interest in finding ideas for your people.
Follow a detailed method for gathering employee input. Be sure to provide more than one way for people to get suggestions. Give workers specific instructions on the kind of input you need. Often, don’t hesitate to remind staff to have reviews daily. Most employers understand that efficiency and employee motivation go hand in hand. Many people see a connection between a productive workforce and employee retention. But, all too often, managers recognize reduced efficiency and high turnover as the rule when they don’t have to. By implementing any of the suggestions above, the team will create a working environment that promotes how to increase productivity in the workplace and employee efficiency, morale, and retention.
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