All businesses are guilty of wasting at least some time and money. Companies need to adapt and evolve, updating their processes, using new technologies and ideas. Just because something was done a certain way in the past, doesn’t mean it needs to be done that way in the future. Our research tells us that businesses are wasting most of their time and money on the following:
1. Failure to update outdated systems Manual, paper-based systems are inefficient, expensive, time-consuming and are more likely to introduce mistakes. Just because a task was done that way 10 years ago doesn't mean that it needs to be done in the same way today. Businesses should invest in technology that improves processes and makes them more efficient.
2. Maintaining legacy systems Just because your business has invested a lot of money in a legacy system, doesn't mean that you should continue to invest in it. Companies can waste a huge amount of time and money supporting outdated systems. Moving to a new system that's easier to support can reduce costs and make your business ready for the future.
3. Failure to outsource Every company likes to think that it’s good at everything, and there’s a natural desire to keep everything in-house. However, failure to outsource can cost your business in time, money and expertise. With the right partners, you can outsource parts of your business to experts in that area, reducing costs and making your business work more efficiently.
4. Too many meetings Meetings are an effective way to get people together to discuss issues, solve problems and come up with new ideas. However, poor planning and a lack of agenda can make them a waste of time. Ensure that meetings have a clear agenda, so that staff can prepare properly and you can get through the important points. Avoid face-to-face meetings that are difficult to arrange, by using technology, e.g. video-conferencing, to save time.
5. Unreliable data affecting decision-making Not having access to accurate data in real-time, can result in managers making poor decisions, or taking too long to reach a conclusion. Your data needs to be analysed, and presented quickly and accurately to top management, so that the right decisions can be made sooner.
6. Lack of collaboration Many people in companies work on their own and don't interact with other staff. This prevents information and knowledge from being shared and can result in multiple people working on the same thing at the same time. Through better collaboration, your employees gain clarity in their roles. Clarity helps each person know what they are supposed to do, and they know what others are doing - or not doing. Collaboration avoids costly overlap or gaps. Things flow more smoothly and get done at the right time. And that means lower costs for the business, and faster turnaround times.