Small business owners are often working hard on day to day tasks, that build up as the business grows, without the owner stepping back and reviewing the processes required to get the job done.
There can be double up of data entry, or things within the process that cause significant delays, errors or bottlenecks that can result in a loss of sales or customer satisfaction.
“By improving efficiency, a business can reduce its costs and improve its competitiveness. There is a difference between production and productivity. Production is the total amount made by a business in a given time period. Productivity measures how much each employee makes over a period of time.” BBC Bitesize
The benefits of improving your efficiency
Addressing these inefficiencies has numerous flow on benefits for the business such as:
- Increased Productivity by minimising time spent through improving and automating certain tasks. This frees up time for the owner or staff to be working on other important potentially revenue generating tasks.
- Reduction in human error, this also saves time, money and potential issues that impact the operation of the business and the customer experience.
- Increased profitability – reducing the cost to deliver a good or service improves the businesses bottom line.
- Higher customer satisfaction – automating means you can provide better service, and this is likely to result in more customers via word of mouth marketing!
In today’s competitive landscape it is imperative that small businesses adopt suitable technology to transform their businesses.
What is digital transformation?
Digital transformation in a business can be described as:
“Digital Transformation is the use of new, fast and frequently changing digital technology to solve problems. It often utilizes cloud computing, reducing reliance on user owned hardware but increasing reliance on subscription-based cloud services.” Wikipedia
Digital transformation has been recognised as a key way to:
- future proof your business
- ensure you can increase efficiencies
- and maximise your businesses growth potential.
Without the adoption of technology, it’s next to impossible to achieve scale and sustainable profitability.
At GreenStalk we focus on assisting clients implement tailored continual improvement projects within their businesses to help them meet their long-term growth objectives.
5 Steps to digital transformation and business efficiency
The improvement process can be summarized as 5 key steps. These are:
- Define – Clearly understand the business problem and the desired outcome, keeping the broader business objectives in mind.
- Measure – Understand and measure the current processes. This gives you the benchmark to determine the benefit the improvement has provided.
- Analyse – Identify the key causes of the problems, prioritise the root causes and analyse how to resolve each issue that is a contributing factor. Process mapping helps provide clarity around the process flow and the issues currently being experienced.
- Improve – Develop possible solutions, these then need to be tested and the simplest solution should be implemented. The implementation should be planned to take into account all related factors.
- Control – Ensure the change has been embedded throughout the business. All processes updated and staff trained. Measure the improvement versus the current process to understand benefit and track improvement.
Do a process audit
We often assist clients with identifying issues with their processes by conducting a process audit, once we have a clear understanding of the day-to-day operations, we can then help prioritise and implement projects that are focused on addressing these problems.
Our approach is tailored to each individual business as every business has unique needs and as a result our digital solutions are completely customized.
We help businesses every step of the way to innovate, improve and grow!
If your business is ready for a digital transformation, contact us today we’d love to help.
Author – Amy Ryan, CEO at GreenStalk
GreenStalk – Building better businesses together.