Running a successful business comes with its challenges. If being spread too thin too often, feeling stressed or like you can’t keep up with the demands of work seems familiar, it might be because your back office operations are coming up short.
Identifying what’s wrong is the first step towards fixing it. Keep reading if you’re curious about 3 sure-fire symptoms that your back office operations are in dire need of an overhaul.
You’re lost in a sea of spreadsheets
Manual data entry is not only one of the dullest tasks to be done but it is racked with human errors. If your business still relies on manual data entry for even a part of the process, you are likely:
- Sitting on too many duplicate files
- Missing key client information
- Running a risk that your information is outdated and/or spending countless hours trying to reach clients to up-date their information
- Losing important data while transferring information from physical forms to spreadsheets
- Spending money on part-time resources to get the work done
You spend hours chasing payments and managing finance issues
Delays, overtime, and frustrated clients are all symptoms of operational bottlenecks. These are caused when resources and processes aren’t well thought out, or when planning can’t keep up with your growth. Any of this sound familiar?
- You don’t have enough staff to smoothly manage peak registration periods and end up hiring part-timers at the last minute
- Creating activity, staff and facility schedules is a nightmare and you often have spaces that aren’t being used and classes that don’t fully sell out
- You’re overloaded with angry/frustrated emails and voicemails from clients trying to register and pay for your activities and programs
- You and your staff spend extended hours and weekends at work or bring work home trying to keep up with everything that needs to be done
The emotional burnout is real
The price you pay for poor back office operations is a lot steeper than just bad data management and bottlenecks. If gone unchecked, the side effects of substandard processes can fester and cause emotional burnout among you and your staff throwing your personal and professional life into a tizzy.
Signs that you or your staff might be experiencing this include:
- Stress and short tempers among staff
- Low productivity
- Missed deadlines & goals
- Low engagement
- High staff turnover
We don’t want to be Negative Nellies but understanding the root cause of a problem is a step in the right direction. Taking too long to address process inefficiencies puts you at a risk of making decisions reactively instead of proactively and nobody likes deciding under the gun.
If you identify with some or all of these symptoms and if you spend more time putting out fires than anything else, it might be time to evaluate what needs to change. Be it learning how to better manage your time or leveraging tech to streamline your operations, there are more than a few ways to change the dynamic. Luckily, information is only a few clicks away and all you need to do is ask the right questions.