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Keeping the workforce productive is one of the bigger challenges businesses face – inefficiencies can slip through the cracks and result in reduced output.

Maintaining productivity is a day to day battle, so here is a list of ten top tips to help.

Use Technology to Your Advantage

Keeping on top of technological advancements can boost your productivity. Tablets are a perfect example since they feature numerous useful business applications and can also serve as portable notepads.

Portable projectors can also make communicating information to your entire team much easier – just set them up anywhere and the data is displayed. There is a lot of technology available today – investigate!

Communicate Effectively

Communication can impact on productivity in a number of ways. What you ask your employees to do should be communicated in a clear, straightforward way.

Misunderstandings cost time. If you have issues you need to discuss with an employee, don’t skirt around the problem. Be clear and avoid any doubt.

Use Web-Based Tools

There is a wide range of online tools to help boost your workplace productivity. For example, you can use a program called Do to organise projects (including deadlines, scheduling, notes and progress updates). It is also available as a mobile application.

Websites like AnyMeeting allow you to host meetings online so your team can communicate more efficiently – especially useful for staying in contact with remote workers.

Change Your Plans When Necessary 

Waiting for responses from clients or co-workers before you continue with a task can sometimes mean you have to delay a project. So why not use your time to do something else. This is a good opportunity to devote your attention to projects that require planning or extra thought.

Plan Your Vacations

It may sound paradoxical, but taking time off can actually good for productivity. It’s easy to get bogged down if you work too long without a break.

Plan your holidays in advance, making sure your preferred dates work with your schedule and that you complete important projects before you leave. If you make work fit around your holidays – you’ll be happier and more productive.

Find Something to Do

Try making an early start on a new project, find yourself something new to do. While you’re at work there is always something you could be helping out with. Being proactive means being productive.

Listen to Your Internal Clock

Are you a morning person? Or do you find yourself being more productive as the day goes on? It’s good advice to know your own habits. If you get a burst of energy in the morning and then slow down in the afternoon, plan your work accordingly. Tackle most of your work early and then focus on simpler tasks during your slow period.

Use To-Do Lists

A simple ‘to-do’ list can help you get organised and keep you productive throughout the day. Putting details of everything you need to do on a list will mean that you don’t waste time wondering what your next move should be. There are a number of dedicated software programs for this, but StickyNotes from Windows can be very effective.

Only Check Your Emails Periodically

Emails are important but they can also be a source of distraction. If you find yourself checking your Inbox and writing replies every ten minutes, stop.

Set aside specific times to check your emails. Look at your Inbox first thing in the morning, at lunchtime and at the end of the day. This will let you focus your full attention on important tasks without letting important emails go unanswered.

Give Your Employees a Goal

Working effectively is easier If you have concrete goals to work towards. Give your employees definitive objectives. Incentives can also encourage that extra effort. No-one enjoys sitting around ‘twiddling their thumbs’.

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Greg Butler

Greg Butler

Greg Butler is a Communications Advisor with <a href="http://www.aami.com.au/business-insurance">Commercial Insurance at Suncorp</a>. He has a long history in the advertising industry, heading the creative departments of local and international agencies, including Clemenger, AdPartners and Leo Burnett. He is <a href="http://www.gio.com.au/business-insurance">experienced in insurance</a> and financial services having worked on accounts including AMP, Standard &amp; Chartered Bank, AGC/Westpac and Sun Alliance.

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