Something we’re passionate about at ALL Strategy is helping our clients use processes to drive efficiency. There are so many tasks that you, or your team, do repeatedly and can therefore shave off minutes — and eventually hours — by documenting. Having a written (or visual) process helps delegate work, train new staff, and prevent knowledge bottlenecks. Eventually, your business can run without you!
One helpful practice as you develop your processes is to include technology. You can use tools to automate recurring tasks, integrate various systems, free up mental capacity, and save your people a lot of time.
Even for entrepreneurs and small business owners who find technology intimidating, there are a number of tools available which have remarkably quick learning curves and can make a huge difference in your firm’s efficiency.
Here are 4 of our favourite free (or free to trial) tools that make a big impact on our efficiency, and are very easy to use:
1. Slack (free)
Replace hundreds of internal email back-and-forth with instant messaging in channels
- Since email is the biggest time drain for 1/3 of business owners, that matters!
- Message in real-time with your whole team. You can:
- Segregate chats by channel (e.g., ‘Sales’, ‘Announcements’, ‘Supplies’)
- Create chats that only some people can access (e.g., CEO and EA)
- Manage separate ‘conversations’ through threads
2. Unroll.me (free)
Instantly see a list of all your subscription emails, and ‘mass-unsubscribe’.
- A literal game changer if your inbox is clogged with newsletters, updates, promotions and content that you just don’t read.
- For the emails you do still want to get, ‘roll them up’ into one email per day — which you can then open with one click to see which emails (if any) you want to read.
3. QuickTime Video (free — included with all Apple computers)
Create free screen recordings for software training purposes
- It’s much more effective to teach to train our team using a 2-minute “how-to”, complete with mouse-clicks and audio, than describe each button or drop-down location. It’s also much easier to learn, since 65% of us are visual learners.
Instantly add secure signatures to documents without printing and scanning
- This saves everyone a huge amount of wasted time printing, scanning and emailing multiple copies of the same document.
- Conveniently, only the sender needs DocuSign — so your clients can still e-sign without the software.
What other tools or technology make your business more efficient? We’d love to know!
Our RESULTS Members gain 24/7 access to our Webinar, “Process = Profit” (available in video and audio-only content), plus our transcript, Summary and Member Workbook to help work through the learning. Join our waitlist so you’re the first to know when we re-open registration.