In this article, we break down the basics of organizing your operations so that you can begin to understand and improve what you do and how you do it.
Estimated time: 4m
Now let's talk about where you can roll up your sleeves and get to work on the details. A great place to start is with operations. You got this.
Streamlined operations help you deliver the best possible customer experience and create room for profitability and growth. Think of the flywheel. When your operations run steadily, it’s easier to push. An efficient business means you're more likely to have cash on hand and the creative energy to pursue new customers and projects.
You can do a lot to make sure each day runs smoothly.
- The right space The COVID-19 pandemic created a major disruption in the commercial real estate market. Today, many businesses are looking more closely at costs, amenities and the value of their location. They’re also embracing virtual teams, which means they may need less office space.
- Customer support. Customer requests or feedback are too important to miss. Create a system in which each customer interaction is logged and action items are assigned so that you can respond quickly.
- Secure, accessible files. Paper files need to be stored securely. Computer files need to be accessible both in and away from the office so that your business can adapt to future opportunities and disruptions.
- Book management. There are many easy-to-use, low-cost accounting systems designed for emerging businesses like yours. A few to consider include QuickBooks, Wave and ZipBooks.
- Scheduling. Coordinating meetings can be arduous. Online schedulers let you quickly and efficiently set up meetings with partners and customers.
- Tax planning: Your business needs to pay taxes quarterly. Make sure you have good estimates of what you owe, as well as the cash flow to make payments.
Map your processes and workflows
The key to better operations is a thorough understanding of what you do and how you do it.
First, map out what your business does for each activity:
- Sourcing and inventory
- Service delivery
- Accounting and treasury
Now, look for inefficiencies.
- Which steps are slower than others?
- Where are mistakes often made?
- What do customers complain about the most?
- What innovations could you take advantage of?
Try to generate data that helps you evaluate the specific steps.
For example, how much time do you spend posting to social media? How many packages do you ship in a week? How many accounting errors are made each month? Once you’re tracking the data, you can set goals. For instance, you might aim to increase the number of packages you send each week by 20%. With that goal in mind, now examine your fulfillment process for ways to get more packages out the door.
No one can ever create a perfect process. But if you monitor workflows and check the data regularly, you can create a culture of continuous improvement.
You're now leaving Chase
Chase's website and/or mobile terms, privacy and security policies don't apply to the site or app you're about to visit. Please review its terms, privacy and security policies to see how they apply to you. Chase isn’t responsible for (and doesn't provide) any products, services or content at this third-party site or app, except for products and services that explicitly carry the Chase name.