The Rapidian

Most Common Inefficiencies in Business

Monday, March 16, 2015


If there’s one thing that businesses need to eliminate, it is inefficiencies in the workplace. These can cost you a ton of money, resources and time that could have been deployed and used for other things. The good thing though is that if you can identify these inefficiencies and their causes, then you can at least start “plugging those holes” by taking steps to prevent or outrightly eliminate them.

Unnecessary and Excessively Prolonged Meetings

Meetings are a necessary part of running a business. You set tasks, review goals, assess worker's performance, draw up new targets, and make even more plans to achieve more for your business. However, when the meetings become excessive, that can be a problem.

The average executive spends about 18 hours in meetings every week. Of those 18 hours, only 20-25% are used for meaningful deliberations; the rest is a waste of time.  According to the software firm, Altlassian, about $37 billion is lost every year from lost hours spent in unnecessary meetings.

Smart business owners and executives, therefore, need to spend less time in unnecessary meetings. A surefire way to do this is to adopt the Asian standing during meetings routine. This will help move things along faster. Better still, you can cut back on the number of people who need to attend the meetings and limit them to just the most important individuals.

Location Dependent Work and Tasks

While commuting is essential for people to get to work and work on their assigned tasks, research has shown that the traffic gridlock that people often have to encounter on their ay to and from work can impact the company’s bottom line. It is estimated that the average individual spends roughly 111 hours stuck in traffic jams.

Moreover, most times, these gridlocks happen during periods when people are fresh from rest and at their most productive. Studies have showed that these traffic gridlocks cost businesses in the US alone at least $23 billion a year.

The point is, what if workers had access to work files and their tasks while on the road? What if they can work on their tasks while commuting on the train, taking the cab, or being driven to work?

Companies can take advantage of task management platforms like the one available at scoro.com that offers workers remote access. This way, they don’t need to get to the office to start working. They can easily attend to some of their tasks while they are on the road to the office.

Workplace Distractions

We are human, and people will always be distracted or need a periodic break from work. However, when these distractions become too much, they can cost businesses much money. In fact, according to a research by Workplace Options, American businesses lose about $650 billion annually to workplace distractions like social networks, phones, coworker conversations, and over 50% of all workers agree that distractions affect and lower their productivity.

Longer Approval Cycle

This is interesting in the sense that companies do it all the time, yet it adds little considerable benefit to their business. If anything, it often translates into much time wastage and unnecessary resource consumption.

For example, if there are 6 offices and tables that a document must pass through to be approved, studies have shown that of the six, only two or so people are required to sign off on and approve the document or request.

The remaining individuals aren’t necessary for the approval. So, instead of passing the document to all, why not just have the two who are actually needed for the approval approve and keep the other four people informed. This will translate into huge time savings instead of creating another set of bureaucratic red tape.

Sources:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/sebastianbailey/2013/08/08/just-say-no-how-your-meeting-habit-is-harming-you/

http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2014/11/economist-explains-1

http://www.cfodailynews.com/the-cash-drain-thats-costing-firms-650-billion-per-year/

About the author

The writer of this article, Oscar King, is a small business owner who has been working hard to remove the inefficiencies found in his own company, and shares what he learned with others through his writing. He often offers tips and advice to help others to succeed in their goals.




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