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How to add value to productivity

The unemployment rate is higher than in the past and for many companies, business isn’t exactly booming. The best way to keep your job is to show your employer that you are so valuable that they simply can't live without you.

Here are 15 sure-fire ways to increase your value to the organization:

Be part of the bottom line. If you want to be valuable to your company, then you need to help it make money. The company measures its ROI on you, so you should measure the ROI on yourself as well. Focus on the activities that use your time, skills, and resources most effectively to connect back to the bottom line.

Finally, if you spend your workdays worrying about losing your job, you are probably headed for trouble. Push those negative thoughts out of your mind and focus on the work you do and how you add value to your company. Demonstrate positivity and a can-do attitude to your team. Work smarter than your competition and you’ll get ahead, every time. Continue to build on your skills to be an integral member and join our on-demand class on the subject.

Part of increasing your value at work also includes motivating yourself to take control of your own career. Click here to learn more about this AMA webinar.

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About the Author(s)

Blaine Loomer is the author of Corporate Bullsh*t: A Survival Guide (Mitchell Publishers Inc., 2009). He has consulted with thousands of companies, from enterprising individuals of mom and pop shops to executive officers of some of the largest corporations in America.

Value-Added Productivity per Employee is an indicator that measures the ‘value-added’ per employee and is an outstanding measure of the extent to which you are utilizing your employee’s strengths.

Added-value is basically the average proportion productivity of your sales – the dissimilarity among the worth you sell at and the price to you usually before bearing in mind the overheads. Added value corresponds to the net output as shaped by a venture or the actual result ascribed to the factors of manufacture within the company. It also designates the degree of accomplishment of collaboration and labors by the various parties involved in the production process. The higher the figure the better it is. In general, rising added-value per employee is positively suggestive of the rising productivity.

Again it is the trend over time that is essential in consideration. A moribund figure usually point towards plummeting productivity and or payroll costs moving out of line. Businesses should struggle to make the most of added-value per employee – this is necessary to make the most of earnings.

The general formula for the Value added per employee is operating profit added to salaries, wages and payroll expenses and then divided by the average number of employees.

Value-added productivity measurement is a capacity tool to establish the productivity performance of an organization. It facilitates the organization to recognize precedence areas for development and to set up organization wide productivity pointers based on Value Added.

The VAPM ratios are a grouping of five profitability and five productivity ratios. A vertical study of the five profitability ratios shows that an augment in profitability is attributed to the increase in profit and Value Added per dollar of sales or revenues generated. This is important as it reproduce the ability of the organization to augment the making of Value Added to cover fixed costs and profits. This would mean effectual, competent management of variable and inventory costs and improved operation of fixed assets (For example, machines and equipment).

Utilizing results of VAPM for productivity improvement

The thorough analysis of the result of the examination can hint the management to use the productivity indicators accordingly to plan for sustained productivity development for the expansion and progress of the organization. VAPM results can be straight away utilized for formatting the optimum figure of employees and formulating a Value Added management plan to help the association generate higher Value Added.

Hence, this concludes the definition of Value-Added Productivity Per Employee along with its overview.

This article has been researched & authored by the Business Concepts Team. It has been reviewed & published by the MBA Skool Team. The content on MBA Skool has been created for educational & academic purpose only.

Browse the definition and meaning of more similar terms. The Management Dictionary covers over 2000 business concepts from 5 categories.

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  • How to add value to productivity

In my previous two articles about productive management, I focused on two key areas – ineffective meetings and the number of tasks being worked on at any one time. In this article we want to concentrate on a third way to make you more productive as a manager.

As managers if we identify all the tasks we do then then we can usually identify which are adding value for the customer, and which are not. We should be able to detect which ones can be simplified and which can be delegated to others, or eliminated completely. It is always an interesting exercise for any manager to write down what they actually do.

As with all roles in an organisation, it is amazing what you discover. In some instances we fill our days; in others we do tasks which actually are no longer required. How many times do you generate a report that is never read? Or spend time planning a project that is then scrapped?

We would suggest that you make this list over a week or two and then spend some time thinking about it. You will be astounded at how much time you can save.

List your tasks

When you have your list the first thing to think about is which tasks are adding value to the customer (value-added) and which are non-value added. Value-added are things which your internal or possibly external customers are interested in. For example, if the MD or CEO asks you to complete a weekly report then that is potentially a value-added activity (provided they read it!). If you have to spend time looking for presentations on your laptop then that is non-value added.

The definition of value-added is quite difficult when we look at what managers actually do. Value-added is normally defined as things which a customer considers important or would pay for. As managers, we normally don’t touch the product being made or interact with the customers we serve, so arguably we actually don’t add any value in the traditional definition.

The good news for managers is that this isn’t the case, which is why we have a further classification; essential non-value added. These are tasks which actually don’t add any value but without them the business would not function or the customer would not get what they need. Managers hopefully carry out lots of these activities. You might check a proposal before it goes to the client to make sure it is accurate and effective. You will spend time motivating your staff or developing the strategy for the business. You might have to report to an internal stakeholder.

The secret is to write down each activity down and then assess which of the classifications it falls into. If it is value-added then you should be able to identify the customer that thinks it is important.

Are you adding value?

Obviously the first thing that will make us more productive is to eliminate or stop doing the things which are clearly not adding value. This might be easier said than done, but it will save you time and increase your productivity.

You can then look at the other activities and review if they can be simplified or generated automatically. We constantly overcomplicate tasks or over engineer products to do more than the customer wants or needs. By simplifying we’ll do them quicker, but we must maintain the quality from the customers view point. Does the CEO actually need all the graphs in your report, for example? Do I have to go to all these meetings or just a few of them?

Now it is time to look at your list and think who else could I empower or train to do these tasks in order to share the load. I believe that ultimately every manager’s role is actually to make their own job redundant as they have eliminated the need for everything they do. They have made it obvious what has to be done, so people don’t have to ask you. You’re no longer firefighting, you’re running the team or department effectively.

However, we must be careful not just to move a non-value added task to other person in order to get rid of it and, throughout the process, we must maintain our focus on quality.

By understanding what they actually bring to the business and how they add value for customers, managers become more focused and, as a result, more productive. It’s not easy to identify which tasks are adding value, as we’re often too close to the job to analyse it objectively. Our 7/8 Wastes training is a great way to learn what non-value added is, and how to accurately identify it at work.

Making managers more productive is not a hard task but it does take time. Spend some time looking at what you do and follow the rules above and you will become more productive, less stressed and more effective.

Productivity is a measure of work effectiveness that businesses use to determine things like the amount of labor needed to complete a job, or actions that can be taken to increase organizational effectiveness. Understanding productivity allows employees to get more done in less time. For this reason, many people within different roles may find themselves calculating productivity, for themselves or others. In this article, we'll explain how to calculate productivity.

Why calculate productivity in the workplace?

Employee productivity is a financially impactful thing for businesses to quantify. Understanding productivity helps businesses adapt and adjust in ways that result in greater productivity which saves money and generates additional revenue.

The productivity of an employee is the amount of work they complete in a measured amount of time. Many external factors influence productivity including economy, competition and more. These systemic influencers are outside of the control of organizations, however, calculating productivity can help employers understand and optimize their current workforce and be more agile in the face of changes to productivity.

What is the productivity formula?

The basic calculation for productivity is simple:

  • Productivity = total output / total input

For example, if Sarah is a QA inspector of bottle caps in a large warehouse and she inspects 800 bottle caps in 8 hours. Her output is 8 hours, and the amount of time she completed it in is her input. In this case, that is 8 hours. Given this information, we can calculate Sarah's productivity:

  • 800 / 8 = 100

In this case, Sarah's productivity is 100 bottle caps per hour. If this company does this same calculation for 1,200 employees. They can use the data set to understand how the performance of individual employees when compared to average productivity for their position, the company, or even the industry if the data is available. Companies can also use it to adjust initiatives designed to increase productivity, then compare samples from different periods to see if the actions were successful.

How to calculate productivity

Productivity is the quotient of output value divided by input value. Output can be several activities completed in a given time or amount of money generated. Input is typically the number of hours over which the activities occur.

If you have to calculate a value for productivity often, it's recommended you create a productivity calculator in a spreadsheet. You can perform a basic employee productivity calculation in Excel by following these steps:

  • Step 1: Locate a blank cell, we will use A2 as an example, and enter in the output value.
  • Step 2: Locate a blank cell, B2, and put in the input value.
  • Step 3: In a difference cell, type out =A2/B2.
  • Step 4: Press enter to confirm the calculation and the formula will be replaced with a value in the cell.

Considerations when calculating productivity

While doing a productivity calculation by hand, using a traditional calculator or in a spreadsheet is a straightforward process, there are some other considerations you should make when determining how to calculate productivity. These are:

Industry

In some cases, the output value might represent money. This is especially true in industries like sales and marketing where positions relate directly to revenue production. However, in other industries, like manufacturing, the number of items completed might be a more accurate measure.

The service industry provides a whole new range of challenges on how productivity is measured because outputs are intangible. In these cases, a measurement of performance based on tasks completed may make more sense over an actual number of items or money produced. Be prepared to tweak how you represent values based on industry standards for measuring production.

Corporate targets and benchmarks

Target productivity can be based on established benchmarks or those created within your organization. In some industries, like call centers, a common benchmark of productivity might be 100 phone calls over an 8-hour shift. But in other industries, benchmarks may not be clear. For example, a service-based technology start-up might not have existing benchmarks for the type of product they are rendering or for the specific industry. In these cases, companies look to the existing data about their own production and start with that.

The measure of efficiency

Productivity tells you how much is output over a measured period of time, however, it doesn't tell you how well tasks are completed. To understand how strong your workforce is, you need to calculate both efficiency and productivity.

In some cases, business leaders opt for different ways to calculate productivity. Due to the nature of productivity being heavily tied to employee output, there are several ways this can be done. Below are some alternative methods for establishing baseline methods of productivity:

Soliciting feedback

One common way a business might determine employee productivity is to conduct feedback from other employees. This method occurs when an employer surveys an employee's supervisors, coworkers and subordinates and asks them to evaluate the contribution of a team member in specific steps that include written surveys, verbal communication and training on how to conduct a review of another employee. By getting a sample that includes multiple people you can help account for bias throughout this process, so it can be very effective at getting a baseline understanding of individual productivity.

Total sales method

If surveying employees isn't for you, another equation you might use to get a broad understanding of productivity is total sales during a given period divided by total hours worked in that period. Let's say, for example, you are a business of two employees who work 40-hours a week, each. That's 80-hours worked in a given week. During this specific week, we'll posit that the total amount of sales is $3,000.

To arrive at a reasonable calculation for employee productivity you could take your total sales and divide it by the sum of numbers of employee hours like this:

How to add value to productivity

Productivity is valued in any workplace, but it’s especially coveted in healthcare settings. Healthcare organizations that maintain high levels of productivity can serve their patients efficiently while minimizing the cost of care.

In pursuit of higher productivity levels, healthcare organizations are constantly seeking new methods to empower their teams, streamline processes, and remove some of the most common obstacles to treatment. As impactful as these efforts can be, they all hinge on the availability of data. To make sure they are improving productivity without compromising the quality of care, health organizations need access to quantifiable productivity metrics.

“How do you measure productivity in healthcare?” is therefore an important question for any medical organization to consider. Health information professionals play an especially big role in putting productivity analytics into place. As such, one way to prepare to add value to a healthcare organization, specifically by bolstering productivity metrics, is pursuing an advanced degree in health information management.

Why Measuring Productivity in Healthcare Matters

Understanding the benefits that productivity measurements can offer may be helpful in learning how to measure productivity in healthcare.

Keeping Costs Down

One of the biggest problems with the American healthcare system is its cost. According to data from McKinsey, the United States spends 18% of its gross domestic product on healthcare. While some of this cost is necessary for ensuring convenience and quality of care, part of it stems from inefficiency—specifically, from treatment processes that add little or no value to the patient or provider.

Healthcare organizations that minimize these inefficiencies and remove nonproductive steps from their internal processes also minimize their cost of care, passing savings on to the government, employers, insurance companies and, ultimately, patients and consumers.

Preventing Slowdowns for Patients

Healthcare productivity leads to more expedient and convenient care for patients.

By monitoring and measuring productivity, healthcare organizations may be able to identify the bottlenecks that make it hard for patients to get the care they need when they need it. Some examples include time-consuming paperwork, nonautomated medication management systems and delays in the supply chain. With the right productivity analytics, organizations can identify these obstacles to treatment.

The Strategies Behind Efficient Productivity

While multiple strategies can help organizations improve their productivity, many of them fall under two basic categories: analyzing core productivity metrics and implementing electronic systems to automate and optimize.

Analyzing the Data

First, healthcare organizations can analyze productivity metrics to identify areas where workflows are inefficient or where they are spending a lot of money without necessarily generating much value. A number of metrics may be worth monitoring, including:

  • Task difficulties
  • Workflow excesses
  • Employee or departmental performance

These metrics provide healthcare decision-makers with real data points that they can use as they consider making changes to their internal processes.

Optimizing the Systems

Equipped with this data, healthcare organizations may also wish to implement electronic systems to eliminate inefficient procedures, leading to optimized, more cost-effective care for patients. Sometimes, this might mean looking for simple, repeatable tasks and automating them, freeing staff members to use their time and energy elsewhere. In other instances, it may mean seeking areas where staff members receive information that doesn’t help them do their jobs more efficiently; eliminating this “noise” may help boost productivity.

Health Information Management and Measuring Productivity

Within any clinical organization, the task of determining how to measure productivity in healthcare falls to the health IT team.

Specifically, the health information management team can implement and manage strategies to gather and analyze data to uncover notable inefficiencies or productivity gaps.

Maintaining Records

Maintaining the accuracy of electronic health records (EHRs) often entails procedural inefficiency. In many healthcare organizations, nurses and technicians spend a lot of time double-checking and verifying information, but they can leverage technology to automate much of this work.

Uploading Documentation

As organizations shift all of their records from paper to digital, they need to digitize old documents and upload them to the cloud. This is time-consuming work that takes away from direct patient care, which means it’s just the kind of low-value activity that might be targeted by health information management specialists.

Managing Chart Retrieval

Another source of procedural inefficiency is chart retrieval; with the right electronic system, a health information management professional can make charts more easily accessible to the providers who need them.

Performing Quality Checks

While healthcare organizations naturally want to emphasize patient safety and quality of care, they don’t have to perform quality checks manually; they can implement automated double-check systems to minimize the burden on nurses and providers.

Learn More About Boosting Healthcare Productivity

Improving organizational productivity starts with data. An advanced degree, such as the University of Illinois at Chicago’s online Master of Science in Health Information Management, allows students to learn more about developing the data collection and analysis systems needed to help a medical organization eliminate operational inefficiencies. Find out more about how the University of Illinois at Chicago can position you for success in developing healthcare productivity strategies.

How to add value to productivity

The whole point of forming a competitive strategy is such that a company is in a position to relate to its environment, be it external or internal. This will enable the company to have competitive advantage, that is, whatever gives them an edge against their competitors.

In his book competitive strategy Michael porter argues that an organization’s competitive advantage will in the end come from the value it creates or offers its customers. This is important because people pay for things they see value in. Looking at it from a procurement perspective, the question then becomes, how can procurement add value to an organization?

RELATED: 3 ways you can have an advantage over competitors ( video )

What does value and added value imply?

As pointed out earlier, people pay for the value of the product, whichever form that value may take. By value I mean ‘worth’ of the product or service, for instance, mobile phones are currently more that calling or texting devices. The value they offer via utility is the reason why some people, in fact, most people cannot do without smart phones.

Generally value can be measured in two ways;

  1. What it costs the organization to produce or provide the goods or services
  2. What customers are willing to pay for the goods or services

In short an organization will create value, by ensuring that the activities they undertake or how they undertake them are more effective and efficient than its competitors because customers purchase value by comparing an organization’s products and services to those of its competitors.

This explains why one would spend a lot of money on Nike or Adidas sneakers and not some generic sneakers even though if you close your eyes and tried each of the shoes, they probably will feel the same. As a brand Nike just seem more ‘worthy’.

The term added value therefore means the addition of greater worth or value to a product or service as a result of all the processes that support its production and delivery to the customer this could be through, marketing, design, production, customer service, distribution etc.

How to add value to productivity

So how can procurement add value?

What you should actually have in mind as a procurement specialist, is that, a business is only profitable if the value the customer sees (meaning what they are paying for) is more than the cost of the value creation. The ultimate value a firm creates, as pointed out earlier, is measured by the amount customers are willing to pay for it.

Through securing good quality materials, ensuring reliable delivery, supporting value-for-money pricing by keeping costs down, procurement functions can contribute to value addition. The chief way one gets to answer the how can procurement add value to an organization question, is by ensuring that the procurement department focuses on either driving down costs without compromising on quality or product features or securing operational efficiency, that is, enabling superior product quality or features at no additional costs. Truth is procurement can still aim at achieving both of these objectives by;

  1. During the selection and management of suppliers, ensuring that they have Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) in mind, that relate to quality of inputs leading to desired output.
  2. Negotiating and managing procurement effectively in order to reduce the cost of inputs
  3. Managing procurement activities efficiently to reduce cost of transactions
  4. Ensuring effective flow of communication to and from user departments to improve procurement specifications, so that business needs are fulfilled more efficiently and at lower cost.
  5. Managing inventory effectively, to minimize the cost of acquiring and holding stock

What are other ways procurement can help an organization add value to the products and services? Suggest so more.

People ask me about productivity habits all the time. I’ve packaged most of that advice in a productivity webinar available to members but I wanted to tell you one counter-intuitive strategy that a lot of people use to increase their productivity: stop the to-do list.

These lists are rarely as effective as scheduling time.

“Scheduling,” writes Cal Newport, the author of Deep Work, “forces you to confront the reality of how much time you actually have and how long things will take.”

It’s really easy to add things to a to-do list. Because it’s so simple, these lists tend to grow and grow. Even worse they encourage us to say yes to almost everything because, well, we can just add it to our list. This means we’re not discriminating and we’re not as conscious about controlling our time as we should be.

As Steve Jobs said, it’s easy to say yes but the real value comes from saying no.

Warren Buffett agrees: “You’ve got to keep control of your time, and you can’t unless you say no. You can’t let people set your agenda in life.”

Most people have the default of saying yes to everything. Personal relationships aside, the default, however, should be no. This is how you increase productivity.

When you schedule things, you are forced to deal with the fact that there are only so many hours in a week. You’re forced to make choices rather than add something to a never-ending to-do list that only becomes a source of anxiety. And you can’t just schedule important work and creative stuff. You need to schedule time for rest and recovery and mundane things like email.

Scheduling things also creates a visual feedback mechanism for how you actually spend your time — something we’re intentionally blind to because we won’t like what we see.

Just as important, you need to think about your energy levels and when you schedule these tasks. This is another key to increasing productivity.

A lot of people I’ve offered productivity advice to spend hours a day on email. It’s not uncommon for people to tell me their job is moving email around. That’s how the modern office works right? While many of these people hate email, it’s not within their control (or mine) to change how the organization works. Instead, I help them look at what is within their control — the time of day they invest in an email. I’ve discovered most people use some of their most productive and high-energy time on … email. That means that some of our best mental energy is being used on the low value-add task of email. A simple change to schedule “doing email” for times when we have less energy makes a world of difference to both productivity and happiness.

Being more productive isn’t always about doing more, it’s about being more conscious about what you work on and putting your energy into the two or three things that will really make a difference.

Brian Tracy shares his seven secrets to adding value in your job, business or products for greater success.

There are seven secrets to add value in your job and in the world around you. Any one of these ideas or concepts can be sufficient for you to become financially successful. When you begin to combine these ideas together, you’ll begin to move ahead more rapidly in your financial life than you ever have before.

1. The Faster The Better

The first way to increase value is simply to increase the speed you deliver the kind of value people are willing to pay for.

Successful people know everybody is impatient. A person who didn’t realize that they wanted your product or service until today, now wants it yesterday. People perceive a direct correlation between speed and the value of your offering.

A person who can do it for you fast is considered to be a better and competent person offering a higher level of quality than a person who does it slowly, or whenever they get around to it.

2. Offer Better Quality

The second key to creating wealth is by offering better quality than your competitors at the same price.

And remember, quality is whatever the customer says it is. Total quality management can best be defined as: “Finding out what your customer wants and giving it to him or her faster than your competitors.”

Quality does not just mean greater durability or excellence in design. Quality refers, first of all, to utility, to the use that the customer needs to put the product or service. It is the customer’s specific need, or the benefit that the customer seeks, that defines quality in his or her mind.

3. Add Value

The third way that you can become wealthy is by looking for ways to add value to everything you do.

Remember, if everyone is offering the same thing, these factors of the product or service become the basic minimum, or the expected norm in the market.

If you want to stand out as a person or as a producer, you have to “plus” whatever you are doing so that your customer perceives you and your offering as being superior to that of your competitors.

You can add value to a product or service by improving the packaging or the design. You can increase its value by simplifying its method of use.

Apple transformed the entire world of computers by making them easy to use for the unsophisticated person.

Simplicity became an enormous source of added value for Apple, and for countless other companies that have followed the same route.

4. Increase Convenience

The fourth way of increasing wealth is by increasing the convenience of purchasing and using your product or service.

Fast food stores by the thousands are a simple example of how much more people are willing to pay for convenience than they are if they have to drive across town to a major shopping center or a major grocery store.

5. Improve Customer Service

A fifth way of creating value and increasing wealth is by improving customer service. People are predominantly emotional.

They are greatly impacted by the warmth, friendliness, cheerfulness and helpfulness of customer service representatives. Many companies are using customer service as a primary source of competitive advantage in a fast changing marketplace.

6. Changing Lifestyles

The sixth key to creating wealth is changing life styles, and the impact they are having on customer purchasing patterns and behaviors throughout the country.

There is a national trend toward cocooning, or staying at home more and to making the home environment more enjoyable. People’s tastes are very different from the tastes of people a generation ago.

More people want to travel and take vacations, thereby creating a boom in the travel, leisure, resort and cruise industries.

Changing lifestyles and demographics can create opportunities that will enable you to offer a product or service to a clearly identifiable market that can make you wealthy in a short period of time.

7. Offer Planned Discounts

The seventh key to creating to wealth is just planned discounting. This involves finding ways to sell higher and higher volumes of products and services to more and more people at lower and lower prices.

You’ve heard it said that, “If you want to dine with the classes, you have to sell to the masses.”

How could you offer a product or service of good value at an even lower price? How could you squeeze out the costs of getting that product or service to the customer and pass the savings onto him or her?

When you begin thinking of increasing the speed at which you deliver your product or service, improving the quality, add value at every stage of production, increasing the convenience for your customers, giving better customer service, catering to changing lifestyles and trends and finding ways to reduce the actual cost, you will be astonished at the incredible number of ideas and possibilities that exist around you.

And remember, one idea of insight for benefiting customers in a way that no one is currently offering can be the springboard that launches you into a life of financial success and achievement.

Looking to take the next step in your business and map out your path to success? Download my One-Hour Business Plan here.

How to add value to productivity

Brian Tracy is Chairman and CEO of Brian Tracy International, a company specializing in the training and development of individuals and organizations. He is the top selling author of over 70 books, including Eat That Frog, a New York Times Best Selling book. In addition, he has written and produced more than 500 audio and video learning programs, including the worldwide, best-selling Psychology of Achievement, which has been translated into more than 28 languages.

Written By

Brian Tracy

Brian Tracy is Chairman and CEO of Brian Tracy International, a company specializing in the training and development of individuals and organizations. He is the leading coach on the topics of Leadership, Selling, Self-Esteem, Goals, Strategy, Creativity and Success Psychology. Throughout his 40+ year career, Brian has consulted for more than 1,000 companies and addressed more than 5,000,000 people in 5,000 talks and seminars throughout the US, Canada and 70 other countries worldwide. He is the top selling author of over 70 books, including Eat That Frog, a New York Times Best Selling book. In addition to this, he has written and produced more than 500 audio and video learning programs, including the worldwide, best-selling Psychology of Achievement, which has been translated into more than 28 languages.

As rising order volumes place increasing pressure on labor resources, e-commerce order fulfillment (e-fulfillment) center managers are always looking for ways to improve operational efficiencies. Compared to traditional distribution centers, these e-fulfillment centers require significantly more labor resources to get orders out the door, according to promised customer service level agreements (SLAs).

To meet SLAs without cutting into profit margins, managers need to be able to quickly identify underperforming labor resources and process bottlenecks. So, how do you do that? Our experts have identified 10 simple ways companies like yours can identify operational inefficiencies and address them before they impact the bottom line.

  1. Know your operation. Managers often overlook the value of regularly walking the floor to evaluate areas that are labor-intensive or where traffic may be congested. In addition to this simple step, more formal audits, metrics analysis and even business intelligence tools are useful to evaluating operations.
  2. Train, train and train again. Regular training (and cross-training) on systems and processes is critical to running efficient operations for associates and management alike. Posting cheat sheets, documenting SOPs, and establishing a “coaching” methodology are also training best practices.
  3. Put people first. To train, grow and retain employees, never forget that it’s still a people-centric business where relationships are important. To keep labor focused on productivity, establish five key metrics as common ground. Then, reward top performers while discouraging unproductive habits.
  4. Keep an order fulfillment focus. With increasing order volumes and SKU types, give your operation the proper tools to meet the challenge. From regular MHE maintenance and system design evaluation to mobile devices and golden zone slotting, your goal is to create an environment that helps pickers perform at their best.
  5. Improve customer service. It’s a service-oriented industry, and even the smallest of details can make a measurable difference. Reducing internal backlogs and ensuring vendor compliance are two easy-to-implement examples of how to do this.
  6. Remove barriers to success. Perform process analysis to track problems and identify opportunities for improvements. Pareto charts are useful for uncovering extremes and determining where to make changes. This is not a “set-and-forget” mentality, but an ongoing process.
  7. Raise the bar. Even after you’ve made improvements, it’s important to not settle for a new status quo. Instead, always strive to incrementally improve results and raise the productivity of low-performing associates.
  8. Review processes. You would be surprised how many e-fulfillment centers don’t have proper process documentation. Once in place, these can be evaluated and updated for continual process improvement, or entirely rebuilt to incorporate new workflows or automation.
  9. Benchmark against your peers. Network within the MHE industry to gain insights and learn strategies that others have already successfully deployed. Engaging with your vendors and suppliers gives them opportunities to add value to your operations.
  10. Assess the power of your system. Conduct a technology review to assess the efficiency of your MHE system. Is it delivering the throughput your operation requires? Then familiarize what offerings are available in the marketplace and decide if an upgrade is necessary.

Even taking a few of these steps can quickly help your operations become more efficient. We urge you to read our Operational Efficiency white paper, then reach out to Honeywell Intelligrated for more information on how you can meet your process improvement goals.

To subscribe to our blog and receive exclusive communications and updates from Honeywell Intelligrated, click here.

The subject of productivity has been a hot topic since the 2017 Autumn Budget revealed disappointing projections. The 2018 Recruitment Trends Report shed some further light on the subject and the implications it has for recruitment: a majority (61 per cent) of recruitment firms expect increases in hiring needs this year, but 79 per cent also say that talent shortage is one of their top three biggest challenges. These findings are echoed by new research from the Hays UK Salary and Recruiting Trends 2018 report , which reveals that while 71 per cent of businesses plan to bolster their workforces over the next year, over half (59 per cent) are concerned that skills shortages will impact their productivity and growth prospects. This means that, in order to maintain productivity, clients and agencies alike must strategically plan how to access talent with the requisite skills.

So what does this mean for your agency, and what do you need to do to ensure you remain a strategic value-add recruitment partner?

Keep Abreast Of The Skills Shortage

With Hays’ research revealing that 76 per cent of businesses don’t believe they have the talent needed to achieve business objectives over the coming year, the opportunities for agencies to win new business are certainly there for the taking. However, with 70 per cent of employers stating that they’ve experienced moderate to extreme skill shortages in the past year, workforce planning strategies will be a key priority for the year ahead. You need to be able to demonstrate that you can assist employers in tapping into diverse talent pools and help alleviate the talent shortages that threaten to impact their success.

However, it’s important to remember that each and every one of your competitors will be vying for the increased demand for recruiters. You need to stand head and shoulders above your competitors and one way to do so is through the development of compelling candidate engagement and marketing strategies demonstrating your ability to source scarce skill sets. We have three top tips to help you build engagement and marketing strategies that deliver:

  1. The Three Ws: Who, What, and Where?
    Sourcing talent in skills-short markets means you are likely to be targeting passive candidates . And because this demographic isn’t necessarily job hunting, you’ll need to actively source and reach out to them. Start by establishing who these people are, where they hang out, and what their pain points are so you can develop the right approach. By doing so can you ensure that you’re not only fishing for talent in the right places – on social media or online networking groups, for example – but that you are also sending content with appropriate messaging. Different demographics seek different information so you need to tailor your engagement strategies to resonate with each.
  2. Build Marketing Into Your Company DNA
    It’s all very well establishing who you are targeting and how to do so but you will fall at the first hurdle unless your entire business has bought into your marketing efforts. Each and every one of your recruiters must be on board – it should be an integral part of their role and some brave agencies are even incorporating marketing initiatives into KPIs. Gone are the days where marketing was the preserve of one individual or department, today it needs to be part of every recruiter’s DNA.
  3. The Candidate Journey
    You can develop a killer engagement and marketing strategy, however, if the candidate experience you provide doesn’t match up , your efforts will be in vain. Ensure that each and every person that comes into contact with your brand is looked after – regardless of whether they are right for a current role, they might be the perfect candidate at a later date and a bad experience can spread like wildfire thanks to social media. Even small gestures, such as personalising communication rather than auto-filling a person’s name, can make all the difference. Do you have a record of birthdays, for example, that you can use in your marketing campaigns? It’s vital to think about how to humanise the candidate journey to improve the experience.

Despite the Hays UK Salary and 2018 Recruitment Trends report revealing that skills shortages continue to threaten UK businesses productivity and growth prospects, the opportunities presented to your agency over the coming months are vast. For more information on how you can add value to your clients and win more business, check out our candidate toolkit here.