Operational Excellence

Why You Need to Prioritise Productivity & 5 Next Steps

By Engage Hub expert 31 October 2017

Productivity – or output per hour by workers – affects everyone.

Of course, there’s the national picture: when our productivity grows, so does our GDP, which means tax revenues increase while government budget deficits go down.

But there’s also the business and personal aspect. Productivity is crucial if you’re looking to maximise the capacity and capability of your human resources, delight your customers and make your business more profitable. As well as this, our individual ability to improve our standard of living is almost entirely dependent on productivity.

However, despite the obvious benefits, recent statistics suggest that productivity is stagnating and even slipping – which doesn’t bode well for uncertain times ahead.

So, how do you do your bit for yourself, your business and your country? We’ve compiled some tips.

1 – Prioritise productivity to boost growth

According to the Office for National Statistics, UK productivity fell during April to June 2017. In fact, it’s stagnated since the 2008 financial crisis, and the most recent figures suggest that the current level of labour productivity is 0.5% below what it was in 2007 prior to the recession. This of course is giving the experts cause for concern.

President of the Federation for Small Businesses, Mike Cherry, believes that productivity is being stifled by ‘chronic underinvestment’ – an analysis shared by many economists.

Meanwhile, Ian Brinkley, Interim Chief Economist of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development also paints a bleak picture: ‘Unless more is done to tackle the nation’s low productivity, people’s wages and living standards will continue to fall and the UK will be ill-equipped to compete once we do leave the EU.’

The message is clear: with Brexit-related uncertainty, you need to start doing whatever you can to increase your productivity.

2 – Invest in your people for higher productivity

There’s a cyclical link between your productivity and the people who work at your business. Higher levels of productivity mean you’re in a position to pay higher wages, and good investments result in greater productivity.

Remember, happy employees stay with you, reducing the cost and disruption of churn. And when your team is happy to be there, they’re invested in your business – which means they’re committed to boosting the customer experience, too.

And it’s not just about salaries. Inspired employees are twice as productive as those that are merely satisfied. So, it’s well worth creating a working environment that prioritises inspiration.

3 – Automate to save time and money

If you’re looking for some quick productivity wins, a good place to start is by automating activity wherever possible. With the right tools, you and your employees can get more done in less time, increasing your output per hour.

The ability to process high volumes of data automatically – and turn it into actionable insight – saves time and money and reduces the stress on your workforce. What’s more, you’ll also see the benefits when it comes to repeat business stemming from a better customer experience.

4 – Reallocate your resources to enhance the customer journey

What channels do you use to communicate with your customers? If you’re depending on just one primary channel, then it’s likely that you’re not operating at optimal productivity.

Research shows that 82% of customers find it frustrating to deal with call centres. They’d rather have their queries answered through other channels: email, social media or messenger apps, for example.

And if you opt for the latter, your team will be able to hold around 10 conversations simultaneously or you could utilise Chatbots to automate the responses for any FAQ’s irrelevant of which channel the customer contacts you by.

Not only are your customers happy they’re getting their questions answered fast (rather than being frustrated by hold music) but your team is more productive too – plus you’ll save money on your call centre resource.

5 – Make life easier with a customer engagement platform

With the right technology, you’ll have the power to boost productivity across your organisation.

At Engage Hub, we’ve designed our technology to seamlessly integrate into all sorts of different databases and remote systems. It works by collecting real-time data, transactions, shipment notifications, inventory levels, geolocation and customer preferences, to name a few. This unparalleled connectivity facilitates contextually relevant, cross-channel conversations proven to enhance operational efficiency and customer engagement.

Discover how we boosted productivity at Experian

Experian, a global leader of information services, approached us to help them automate the process of collecting accurate customer data. Our solution was to provide a validation and messaging gateway to seamlessly integrate with the Experian candidate and tenancy validation system, which has improved call efficiency and data quality.

Here’s what Tim Rooney, Commercial Director at Experian Consumer Information, says about working with us:

‘One of the best things about the Engage Hub integration is that we have significantly increased the efficiency of our outbound call process by automating multi-channel data collection. We can now meet our internal & customer SLAs & continue to deliver a world-class customer service.’  (Read the full Experian case study here.)

Put simply, prioritising productivity will not only help your business grow by delighting your customers and engaging your employees, it will also help boost the UK economy as we face challenging times.

To find out how our customer engagement platform will help increase productivity at your business, get in touch.