How many times per week do you end the day with more items on your to-do list than on your list of completed tasks? The familiar feeling that there simply aren’t enough hours in the day can leave you and your employees feeling burned out. Fortunately, there are simple fixes that can help boost employee productivity and get back a bit of our most precious asset – time. 

Encourage your HR department to consider how technology can help increase productivity, starting with the four easy ways below.

  • Be flexible – Some HR managers might think that setting limitations on things like mobile devices and Internet access is the answer to increased productivity, but many companies have found that giving their workers more freedom and flexibility through certain policies is the key to increased efficiency. Flexible work options have been shown in repeated studies to boost workers’ productivity levels. Without the stress of work-life conflict, workers can better focus on doing their jobs well. Flexible hours help people better manage their personal obligations without needing to take time off. A change of scenery is also a great way to boost creativity and recharge. Remote work also can offer new networking opportunities when employees are on-the-go and connecting outside of the office.
  • Move to the cloud – The cloud, when delivered right, is a game-changer, providing small businesses with the IT solutions they need to solve their most challenging technology concerns. The great thing about the shift towards cloud mobility is we’re no longer tied to our desks. Even when we’re on the go, we still have access to important documents through our phones and devices in case of emergency or last minute edits. The cloud also helps “involuntary IT managers” or nontechnical employees, who are tasked with managing their companies’ IT solutions, by providing access to powerful applications from anywhere and on multiple devices with both privacy and security features built into each solution.
  • Use CRM – Online customer relationship management (CRM) is another tool that SMBs can take advantage of to gain a competitive edge. CRM can help reduce costs and increase profitability by organizing and automating business processes that nurture customer satisfaction and loyalty in the sales, marketing, and customer service fields. New offerings allow you to use email templates for easy tracking to see who opened your emails, when and where.
  • Upgrade your technology – There are plenty of great tools you can use to increase productivity and ultimately save time during the workday. The right technology can increase efficiency, save money and reduce waste while outdated tools could be holding your business back. Employees who have to wait 10 minutes for their PC to boot up in the morning and deal with multiple crashes throughout the day are not productive workers. Research from the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) found SMBs leveraging technology grow revenue and profitability at a much faster rate.

For more information on Microsoft Small Business Solutions, visit our Modern Biz page. 

About the Author(s)

Cindy Bates

Cindy Bates is the vice president of the U.S. Small- and Mid-Sized Business (SMB) Organization at Microsoft. Cindy and her team serve millions of SMB's in the U.S., helping them start, grow and thrive by utilizing today’s powerful and affordable technologies.

Vice President, Microsoft SMB