Working on a new venture can be an inspiring and intensely rewarding experience. However, whilst you’re starting up and trying things out, efficiency may suffer. Every little helps, so Peter Ames from Office Genie is here to help with a few tips that could boost productivity.
Invest in a cloud-based document storage system such as Google Drive or Microsoft’s Skydrive (both are free in their basic packages – so it shouldn’t be too much of an investment). In addition to allowing you to store all your data and documents digitally in a free online drive, with both of these you can also share documents between staff.
This is a real bonus, it means you may not have to print off reams of paper before a meeting; everyone can access notes online, something that also makes collaboration that bit easier. In addition, going paperless, with the help of one of these apps, give you the chance to make your business a little greener in its early stages, when such things are easier to implement.
One of the further benefits of going paperless, and particularly of using a cloud-based document storage system, is that it can make working remotely much easier: You can access all your documents from anywhere with a good internet connection. It makes working on the move or out of the office much more convenient.
There are whole host of ways remote-working can benefit a startup and make staff that bit more productive:
- You can have a smaller office space if you don’t have to house a full team. Save some money and pump it back into the business.
- Some tasks just aren’t suited to an office. If you’ve got editorial staff let them work from home every so often where they might find relief from ‘the office buzz’.
- Even a simple change of scenery can stop things from stagnating and keep staff inspiration flowing.
Do more with your to-do lists
Of course, one step to a more efficient business is to get staff to keep to-do lists. If increasing numbers of your employees are working from home, it makes sense to have them keep to-do lists they can access from anywhere. This is where apps such as Evernote or Wunderlist comes into their own.
They’re a note-taking apps that let you access your notes (i.e. your to-do lists) wherever, whenever and on whatever device. Both have an app for pretty much all major devices and operating systems. You can also share notes over email; making these a handy app to have open in a meeting!
And whilst we’re on the subject of to-do lists…
Look into an online tool such as Basecamp. On the face of it this is just another to-do list app, albeit a particularly useful one that allows you to create any number of lists and sub-lists and tick tasks off when they’re done. The real beauty of Basecamp is the collaborative nature of the tool. When you’ve added a task, you can assign it to a fellow member of staff and add comments as the project progresses.
It’s also worth considering alternative such as Workzone, this offers you most of the key collaborative features of Basecamp with the addition of things such as ‘Time tracking’ and ‘Workload reports’ so staff can make sure they’re not focusing all their energy into one task.
Peter Ames writes on behalf of www.officegenie.co.uk, a site where you can find desk and office space in the United Kingdom