07 January 2019 Business

Turn hard work into smart work

Working smarter is the answer and in the long run may be the smartest step of all.

If you have not come up with a new year's resolution for your business, can I humbly suggest Work Smarter? It is something that we should all be doing in any case, looking for the sort of continual improvement that keeps us a nose ahead of the competition. But stopping to think hard about how to work smarter may bring even greater rewards. And, handled sensibly, should be embraced by staff.

It can mean a host of things, a different mix for each business, but the idea should always include the most appropriate technology, the best training and the most suitable offer for your customers. The technology must include the collection and application of data. This can show where inefficiencies lie, where a part needs fixing or training is required. Data can show that estimates are inaccurate and how scheduling can improve to create more capacity. And through a proliferation of apps, MIS can provide this information at your finger tips. Technology paves the way to work smarter.

It will also mean empowering staff to take decisions inline with a corporate strategy and providing the training necessary to make the right decisions for the business. With ever decreasing runs and vanishing turnaround times, nobody can be personally involved with every job. Or even most jobs. Working smarter is the answer. And for customers, suggestions of how to improve their communications, thorough different styles of print, through different materials and perhaps without the direct use of print at all, will enable them to work smarter while at the same time strengthening bonds between printer and customer. In the long run that may be the smartest step of all.

Gareth Ward