Productivity within any business is an essential metric to measure. You can measure it in a number of ways, depending what your business does and what you are trying to achieve. Understanding productivity as much as you can is key to ensuring your business continues to run smoothly. Here’s why productivity is so important:

 

  • Better productivity means better results for all. It can lead to higher wages because companies are making more profit, for example.
  • Productivity and wellbeing go hand in hand. Too much work and too little time is immensely stressful and can lead to people feeling burned out and disengaged. A good work life balance is key for happiness and satisfied employees. 
  • Better productivity means better profitability for your business. 
  • Higher morale is often a result when employees are using their time wisely. The feelgood factor will often spread throughout the company and encourage many great things, such as better collaboration and lower absenteeism. 
  • Better customer satisfaction is often also a result when time is being used productively. Questions are often answered faster, service is better, and this leads to happier, more loyal customers. 

 

So, what causes low productivity? 

Pandemic aside, there aren’t many people who are consistently productive at work. Here’s an idea of things that have a big impact on productivity:

 

  • Absenteeism – employee wellness is one of the most critical issues when it comes to productivity. Some cost estimates for illness-related lost productivity are as high as $530 billion a year. Looking at the reasons for sickness absence in your business will help you to better address things. Are they work related? Could they be eased by making changes at work, e.g. lower stress? 
  • Distractions/lack of control – distraction is a huge opponent of productivity. Emails, meetings, devices, noise, and other issues can all lead to distractions. This is why some people may have thrived working from home during the pandemic, but also why some may not have (those with families also at home, for example). 
  • Poor communication – this leads to people feeling isolated and unmotivated. Staff should feel like they are free to ask questions and have somebody on hand to answer them. Collaboration software can help with this when many employees are working remotely. 

 

Improving Productivity

Improving productivity during a pandemic may be a little more challenging, but it’s not impossible. 

  • Setting goals – busy doesn’t mean productive. Knowing how to set good goals with proper time frames can be a big motivator of teams. 
  • Use appropriate tools – the right tools mean better communication and collaboration, helping to get rid of glitches in productivity once and for all. Using business application development software can be a great start for just about any business. 
  • Recognize your team for hard work – recognition boosts morale, but many employers don’t provide this as often as they should, if at all. 
  • Reduce multitasking – multitasking is not productive, and can cause us to lose valuable time. Concentrating on one job before starting another has proven to be more effective. 
  • Provide training – education boosts productivity. Staff should be confident in their abilities and know what they are doing.