Whether you’re facing a shortage of qualified employees or just downsizing to improve your bottom line, there are times you may need to get by with a smaller staff. If you’re looking for ways in which your business can successfully operate within a “leaner and meaner” framework, here are three ideas to help you get more done with fewer employees.
Make it a point to teach your existing employees multiple skills, not just those that fall within the traditional scope of their duties. By identifying tasks that aren’t necessarily full-time responsibilities and cross-training your existing employees to complete those jobs, you’ll likely find you need fewer team members to get everything done.
The more capable and agile your people are, the more they may be able to contribute to your company’s success. As a bonus, cross-training can also boost employee morale in a time of cutting back, as learning a new skill can make people feel more valuable.
Take Advantage of Technology
No matter the process, chances are there’s a piece of technology that can help you handle it with less manpower. For instance, by choosing a smarter office phone system like one offered by Ooma, you and your staff can spend more time building relationships with clients than managing your communications needs.
Cloud phone systems allow you to integrate desktop and mobile phone operations, replace outdated audio and video conferencing tools, and even provide virtual call routing and receptionist services, all of which can make your clients think you’ve got a cadre of communication specialists at your disposal.
While the outsourcing of manufacturing and distribution has been common in businesses for decades, in recent years many other in-house activities have been moved out of the main office. Everything from accounting to IT to human resources can be handled by an outside firm, freeing up payroll dollars to be spent on staff who directly contribute to your bottom line.
As with cross-training opportunities, if you take a hard look at your operations, you can likely identify duties that don’t require the dedication of a full-time employee that you can potentially outsource.
You can still efficiently work as a company with fewer employees so long as everybody is productively doing their share of work. One way to enhance productivity in the office is by eliminating distractions and lessening noise. You can make your office space less distracting and more productive if you add office partition walls. This addition can encourage productivity as it minimizes the noise that distracts workers.
Successful businesses don’t necessarily need a large and specialized workforce in order to thrive. By expanding your existing employees’ roles, investing in new technology, and outsourcing one or several operational tasks, you just may find that you’re able to be even more productive and profitable with fewer employees.