As with most of my posts, I want you to realize the importance of being organized and that becoming unorganized usually happens gradually. If you don’t see the importance, you are failing to understand how much, being disorganized actually costs you.
This will require you to analyze yourself and your daily activities that entail your administrative operations. It doesn’t matter if you own a restaurant, sell realty or own a dental practice, you have set tasks that are required each day, in order for your business to function.
As your business grows, do you still keep track of your mileage, do you file your mail as you open it or do you let it pile up? How long does it take you to find what you are looking for? Do you itemize your expenses on a weekly basis? Are you answering your emails in a timely manner?
If you answer any of these questions with doubt or hesitation, you are potentially costing yourself hundreds of dollars. You as the business owner or lead manager, have to make the best use of your time. If you are spending more than 1 minute looking for something in your office, that is costing you $__. (You fill in how much your time is worth) I see it over and over again, clients that spend hours looking for something or don’t respond to emails on time and have stuff all over their desks or computer desktops.
Being efficient will always save you money. This means, establishing protocols to streamline your office functions will be an investment to save you money in the near future. If you can optimize a task that usually takes an hour, down to 5 minutes, would you agree that efficiency saved you money?
Please see our initial suggestions for organizing your business to streamline your office and start saving time, which equals money!
- CRM – Customer Relationship Management Software – Do you use desktop or paper files to bill your clients and store their information in different places? Example: You use Excel or Word docs from your computer to store client information, send contracts and have to click in an out of these documents in order to access all relevant details for any given client? Many of the CRM options out there integrate with each other, in order to provide an organized platform to easily manage your clients. As your business grows, it is important to ensure your current software is still right for the job.
- Filing System – Not all filing is created equal! Just because filing usually calls for knowing the alphabet, doesn’t make it the only way to create a filing system. You can also file by category or the type of project, to name a couple. Along with the filing, you should create a menu of what the contents of the files contain. This will ensure you can find things, even if you don’t remember exactly where you filed them.
- Hire Help – As your business grows, your staff should too. This doesn’t necessarily mean you should add a full-time employee right away but look at some options. You might be able to get away with hiring freelancers or outsourcing some of the menial tasks you don’t have time for. So many options are available for short term office help including virtual assistants or subscription-based help, which can be viable for small companies who can’t afford to hire full-time staff. Don’t forget that you get what you pay for, so if the help is too affordable, it may not be as efficient, which defeats the purpose.
What can you take away from this?
Evaluate your business for deficiencies that can be leading to wasted time which causes a loss of money.
Streamline the basic daily tasks of your business.
Hire or outsource help when your business starts to grow, in order to keep growing.
My Office Fairy is happy to provide free advice on organizing your protocols. Look for our workshops coming to the San Francisco Bay Area through the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in March 2020. You are also welcome to give us a call or send us an email with your questions!