The holy grail of business operations right now is efficiency. With increasing customer expectations, fewer resources and a challenging economic environment, managers everywhere are looking at ways to run their business as productively and efficiently as possible.
A main area of waste is in unnecessary administration. Where this takes up valuable resources, it wastes both time and effort and results in an opportunity cost as that resource might otherwise be more gainfully employed. So how can you cut down on your business administration costs and inefficiencies? There are a number of ways, but it’s also worth considering that
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to help to make the most of any savings made.
One quick and easy win is to switch from time-consuming manual data administration to automated data management and entry. There are some great software packages on the market which save time and reduce the need for staff.
These systems also improve the accuracy of data input by inserting mandatory fields to avoid missing data and ensuring validation and checks via a series of software controls and cross-database interrogations.
By going down the automated route, errors are instantly identified and corrected. Optical recognition software is now also widely available to read handwriting and complex data sources quickly and easily. Invest in technology and you'll see your administrative costs fall.
Outsourcing Payroll Functions
Payroll is always a huge administrative burden for organisations and there are many business-services outsourcers who will take on this specialised task for you and run it more effectively using complex software systems.
Outsourcing means that you hand over a resource-intensive task to the experts, removing your need to spend time and effort on it. You also will not have to invest in payroll systems. The cost benefits can be huge. As well as payroll, you can also outsource a variety of other functions, such as HR, finance, IT support and training.
As administrative burdens are a common business problem, there is a standard model - called in fact, the Standard Cost Model - which is designed to reduce unnecessary administrative time and cost by breaking down business regulations into quantifiable and measurable elements.
Simpler processes can then be identified and implemented. This helps by simplifying or removing unnecessary tasks which aren't required for a regulatory perspective.
Moving to the 'digital office' offers excellent administrative cost and time saving potential, as well as serious reductions in waste and carbon outputs. Features such as group file sharing using a system such as Sharepoint prevent the need for endless paper copies and inefficient email conversation groups.
Good email management, including the use of calendars, contacts, deadlines and good etiquette, can also greatly improve administrative efficiency. It's well worth training your staff on the best-practice standards to give everyone the tools they need to start working in a better, more efficient way.