Website Logo
Website Logo
5 April 2016
Process Improvement

20 WAYS TO BE MORE PRODUCTIVE – Reduce Administration

Productivity means higher output using your current resources, or achieving the same level of sales with less resource.

When asked “What things outside of your control, get in the way of your productivity?” managers cite paperwork high on the list.  Some studies have shown that administrative tasks can take up as much as 25% of a manager’s working week.  It seems the higher up the organization you are promoted, the more administration there is to do.  The activities included in this are staying in touch through networking, writing and responding to emails or communications, handling the post (yes there is still stuff coming through the letterbox rather than the inbox), taking phone calls, dealing with technological issues which may not necessarily interfere with their departments work, and so the list goes on.

To reduce distractions from administration the business must focus on the high value tasks and eliminate low value activity – or employ more economical resources to deal with the administration rather than taking up valuable management time.  A manager actively supervising the work will generate much better results for your business than one sitting in front of a screen answering emails all day long.

A method to review and reduce administration is to gather hard copies of all the different forms, spreadsheets, reports, memos and any other things that have to be “worked” on.  Get a big roll of brown butchers paper, stick together a few sheets of flipchart paper, or simply find a big wall on which you can stick them to.  Get two big marker pens – one red, and one green.  Take each item and systematically analyse and write down the pros (green pen) and cons (red pen) of the information you prepare, or forms you have to complete, and reports you have to write, challenge their complexity, usefulness etc.

Summarise all the comments into action logs and gradually work through simplifying, eliminating anything which adds no value, scrapping forms no longer needed or find alternative, less time consuming, ways for the same information to be compiled.  Involve your IT department to see if they can integrate and incorporate reports and forms directly through the company systems.

Download the free Book


My book “20 Ways to Be More Productive” offers easy tips, case studies and ways you can improve productivity and save money in every aspect of your business.