Why staff efficiency is more important than you may think

Lose an hour of a staff member and it is gone forever…

Your staff may not realise but if each employee is ineffective for just one hour a week, that’s 12 minutes a day, then that’s a profit margin of 2.5% of turnover gone!

If work is delayed or an invoice not sent you may have cash flow problems but it won’t affect revenue or profit if you can catch up. However, if you lose an hour of a staff members time it is gone forever.

As a professional services company your staff generate your income. Hours per week, times rate, for each staff member define most of your revenue and, after subtracting costs, your profit.

It is counter-productive to increase weekly hours for a sustained period… and risky to increase hourly rates if you want to stay competitive. But what you can and must do is ensure that every hour, all staff are utilised and efficiently working on the right work. That means:

• they always know exactly the priority and what they are to work on now;
• they have the tools and skills to do this as efficiently as possible.

By all means encourage staff to challenge priorities, but give them an ordered task list.
Then ask staff what would make them more productive such as:

• more screens, a faster computer or network;
• better practice management software to provide task lists and to track correspondence and progress;
• changes to the office environment such as on demand boiling water or a change in office temperature.

If you start each day ensuring staff know what to work on and are efficient, it can dramatically affect your bottom line.