Organizational efficiency is the organization’s degree of success in using the least possible inputs in order to produce the highest possible outputs. It is about each individual doing everything he knows and doing it well; HR plays a pivotal role in driving efficiency in any organization.
Policies, Procedures, Protocols and Job Descriptions help in creating efficiency and eliminating some administrative stress in several ways. They maximize training time; set expectations for behavior and conduct and assist new employees in learning the job. Here are some simple ways to contribute to organizational efficiency –
- Know your job description well! Individuals need to know their Job descriptions well and key responsibility areas. Duplication of work decreases efficiency and job mismatches lead to confusions and loss of interest in the work!
- Communicate! Communication flow between teams and across teams is important for effective working. Employees need to interact with each other, discuss their problems, brainstorm ideas and gain from each other’s expertise. They need to have an easy access to their manager’s cabins too so that grievances and problems can be addressed immediately.
- Time Management is an essential element of efficiency. If everyone did their bit to come on time, complete their work on time and meet deadlines and commitments, you are already on your way to being efficient.
- Integrate values in daily life! Whatever an organization’s values, it must be reinforced in review criteria and promotion policies, and integrated into daily life in the firm. No company can build a coherent culture without people who either share its core values or possess the willingness and ability to embrace those values.
- Focus on your customer. Ultimately, what all customers want is value. Value creation occurs when the quality of services received is perceived as high as compared to their cost. What does your customer want and how can you provide it better, faster, cheaper?
- Figure out how the work gets done. We have lots of assumptions about how work gets done that doesn’t mirror exactly what happens. Ask an outside observer to record the steps of the process in a way that he/she could repeat it themselves if they had to, without assistance and review your process.
- Remove inefficiencies and waste. Once you know what the workflow of your process looks like, take a second look at any step in the process that doesn’t directly create value for the customer. Manage, improve, and smooth your process flow to eliminate non-valued-added activity (e.g., wasted time,customer delays, waiting for approvals, unnecessary steps, duplication of effort, and errors and rework).
- Track numbers and manage by evidence. Sometimes what should work well doesn’t work well. Test out your process, collect data on how well it is working, highlight and eliminate errors, and seek continuous improvements in value. Seek proof; don’t assume an improvement has been made.
- Empower the people operating the process. The best person to improve a process is the person who carries out the process. Utilize employees full skill sets. Can someone be doing more? If the process is improved, they will likely have time to take on higher level work.
Go about all this in a systematic way. Your process is not perfect and if by some miracle it is, it won’t stay that way for long. Changes will occur that will demand changes in the process. Being able to replicate the steps of process improvements is the key to delivering long-term, sustained value.