It’s pretty understandable that, as you go through your work day, keeping a record of what goes on and how your business processes work will not seem like a priority. Your focus is on meeting today’s goals, so documenting how you go about doing it may seem like time wasted. But the long term benefits of having a clear record of how your business operates will become a key asset for your company as it expands; you will find that spending a bit of time now on noting down the processes of your business will save you loads more time as your business grows.This article will provide you with simple ways of effectively documenting your business processes but, if you still need convincing, here are six ways that you can benefit:
1. Save time on decision-making
Thinking on your feet whilst you work may seem like a good way to remain flexible to new challenges but the reality is more likely to leave you lingering between tasks as you work out the best course of action. Instead, you will find your day runs much more smoothly with a good set of guidelines to follow on the best business practice for the various tasks you are likely to face. Similarly, well-documented processes will become a great help in training new staff in their daily responsibilities. New team members can quickly see what they are likely to face and how best to overcome various challenges, meaning they can quickly fit into their new role without the delays caused by reactive, on the spot training.
2. Clearly see how long your jobs will take
Accurately recording your strategies for getting things done will provide a clear image of the time you spend on each task within your business. Knowing this is incredibly valuable when scheduling and organising your team for each day and will help you to meet project deadlines more easily. Alongside the scheduling benefits we highlighted earlier, this process documentation can lead to new levels of productivity which can inspire that extra growth in your company.
3. Know for sure where you should innovate
If you hit a difficult patch, it can be hard to tell what needs to change to improve your situation. As a result, you can end up wasting time and effort in trying to solve a problem you can’t clearly see. With a clear documentation of your business processes, you can see what parts of the process don’t work or are inefficient and keep your time spent focused on what is important for your business.
4. Give your marketing a new edge
A key step towards success is highlighting what makes your company unique to potential customers. As Apple and others have shown, that USP can be easily found within the processes of your company. Letting your customers behind the scenes and showing them what goes in to the service you offer or the product you sell can make a strong connection and help you to stand out above competitors.
5. Help yourself get off of the front lines
One of the most important steps to successful business management is ensuring you are not needed to keep the company running each day. If you want your business to succeed, you need to have clear documentation of procedures so that the business is not relying on you to keep everything going. Once your business processes are clear for all to see, you can delegate the daily tasks to staff or outsourced workers. Then it’s time to concentrate on the vital task of planning the growth of your business.
6. Make sure no-one is irreplaceable
As well as allowing you to step away from the front line, clearly documented business procedures can be invaluable when employees leave. Rather than rushing in a new hire to be trained in a role before the current employee leaves, you can take your time in finding the right replacement knowing the process is available to fully train your chosen hire. It also means that, whilst you are still looking for a replacement, other members of your team can step in and cover the responsibilities by referencing the documented procedures.