How To Streamline Business Processes Without “Dumbing Down”
A “brain drain” is the process of those with talent and intellectual skill leaving a particular organization or state, be that many qualified citizens chasing job opportunities abroad, or leaving a company to work at another business. This is, of course, a negative outcome, because it’s essential to keep the top talent you have in your business and to make it appealing for smart, competent, and hardworking people to stay with you.
That said, a “brain drain” is not solely limited to the people within your firm. Sometimes, the equipment, tools, and processes they use to actualize their planning and work can also become limited in their ability to function and develop as expected. This is a negative outcome as well.
This can often happen when a business decides to simplify or streamline business processes without fully accounting for how those changes could affect the work conducted. In effect, this is like causing your staff to work less efficiently or with as much autonomy, which effectively causes that aforementioned brain drain without staff even leaving.
In this post, we’ll discuss a few methods you can use for avoiding that outcome. We hope they can help you prosper as a firm more easily:
Set Clear Goals
If streamlining a process, it should empower autonomy, not limit it. That’s why it’s important to set goals ahead of time before you move with the decision. What is the streamlining process supposed to achieve? For example, you might integrate leasing software to better manage a complex process in one location, giving staff the capabilities necessary to properly manage each license and to access documentation more efficiently. List out every purpose you might achieve thanks to the change, but also consider how that process might shift thanks to the new tool. It may be that staff will need to be more collaborative in the department thanks to this shift, so you can begin accommodating that before the change is made.
Analyze The Effect Of Limitations
Let’s say you’re a company that sells services to clients. Perhaps you’re changing a five-tier based service subscription into a three-tier, offering each tier more for their money and making it easier to manage each client.
It’s important to note which limitations may spring up from this change. Could it be that now more people on your middle plan have access to the top VIP paid premium support option, your staff will need to know more about that specific plan and the limitations they may have. This may require some additional training. As you can see, when you analyze the effects of changes, you can prepare for them.
Communicate The Changes
It’s important to note how internal changes may reflect on your clients, and what they should be prepared for. For example, if you’re trimming your amount of services offered, make it clear why you’re taking this move, and how it’s intended to positively affect them.
It’s very important to justify your reasoning, because customers and clients hate feeling shortchanged about an alteration they haven’t been informed of, even if your terms of service dictate that you can make any change you’d like. This is especially true if they’ve invested a good amount of time and money into your service, because it may feel as though you’re trying to cost cut or squeeze them for more money, giving them an incorrect impression of your goals.
Understand Streamlining Is The First Step
Streamlining your business is the first step in a long redevelopment vision, where you need to measure your results, adjust what hasn’t been working, and see what the effects are. In some cases, an issue may present itself that you hadn’t expected, and that’s quite understandable, but it’s essential to be agile and reactive in order to deal with those problems.
As such, a streamlined effort is nowhere near the last stage of your approach, but a plan you work towards for the best results. You may gain positive or negative feedback from the change, and as your vision is tested in the real world, you’ll develop a deeper understanding of the process and how it’s affected your company and staff. You can also commit internal reviews to ensure that any failed metrics or goals are properly understood. Any change, after all, provides an opportunity to assess and continue with confidence.
With this advice, you’re sure to streamline your business processes without dumbing anything down. Even if you need to alter your streamlining in a different direction, you will have learned from the effort.