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More than half of the working day goes to unnecessary things: 5 tips for a more efficient workplace

Published: April 19, 2022, 3:25 p.m.Simon O’Kane is the Head of International at Asana. Every day, employees waste working time on a number of unnecessary things that steal time from the actual work tasks. Often half a working day or more. For a year, these time thieves are summed up in huge amounts of lost time, delayed projects, missed deadlines – and frustrated employees. But it is possible to work smarter and improve team efficiency.Do you want to know more? Here you will find the report The Anatomy of Work Index 2022.When teams do not have time to focus on meaningful work, it not only creates stress for the individual employee but also has negative effects on companies’ profitability. According to a study conducted by the School of Business at Umeå University among small and medium-sized companies, administration is the companies’ worst time thief. And the lack of time that arises from all administration is in turn a serious obstacle to the growth and development of the company and the business community. Several studies point in the same direction. According to a survey from the job site salary.com, almost nine out of ten employees consider that they waste working time every day – up to four hours or more, which in other words is more than half the working day. And they point to the same time thieves – unnecessary meetings, information retrieval and email.

Work smarter

All of this is also confirmed by Asana, a global company that helps teams manage their work. Like other studies, Asana’s latest Anatomy of Work Index 2022 shows that employees lose 58 percent of their time each day engaging in less productive activities. But they also believe that it is possible to work smarter to improve team efficiency. – Many organizations lack a centralized platform for planning, organizing and performing tasks or leading projects. This creates challenges and problems for both employees and companies. Employees have to work harder, which means more dissatisfaction and burnout as a result. And when teams are dissatisfied, exhausted and uninvolved, everything that in turn affects the company’s culture and results suffers, says Simon O’Kane, Head of International at Asana.

Facilitates collaboration

In this context, many companies realize the potential of work management to create more agile and sustainable organizations. One company that has received help from Asana is Belgian Carmeuse, which has about 4,700 employees worldwide, and is a leader in mining. With a team of 70 people who relied on traditional spreadsheets and process management tools, the company’s HR director Laurent Peeters realized that something needed to be done to streamline collaboration and save time. . Today, the HR team, and some internal departments in, for example, IT and communication, use Asana to achieve their goals and measurable results and manage activities for global talent. It has changed the processes and gives everyone insight into where the project is and when the tasks are to be performed. – Asana’s tools are transparent and easy to explain to everyone involved, both people in the project and external stakeholders. It is easy to use and has helped us carry out our work in a more efficient way. We would not have been able to achieve the same focus and success in the last two years without Asana, says Laurent Peeters. Another example is the Swedish Avinode Group, a world-leading software and data partner for the business aviation industry, which has used work management to coordinate complex marketing activities in its cross-functional team. – From planning timelines to performing the work and reporting results, Asana gives us a way to coordinate all activities in the team. Everyone gets insight into how the projects are progressing in real time, and the ability to link the projects to overall goals and measurable results makes the work seamless. This allows us to keep the right course and perform our best, says Alexandra MacRae, Head of Marketing & CX at Avinode Group.Do you want to know more? Here you will find the report The Anatomy of Work Index 2022.

What can companies do to increase team productivity and create a more efficient workplace?

Eliminate unnecessary meetingsOne of the easiest ways to improve team efficiency is to get rid of unnecessary meetings. This does not mean that all meetings are bad, but for them to be productive, there must be a clear agenda, the right people must participate and everyone must be willing to contribute to a solution.2. Streamline meetingsNo matter what kind of meeting you plan, there are some simple ways to make it more productive: Create and share an agenda before the meeting. Also agree on meeting standards and share these before the meeting. Then take notes that turn into actionable actions and gather feedback to increase productivity.Prioritize work based on important resultsHave a clear vision for which tasks are in line with the company’s or department’s overall goals. It helps keep everyone on the same page and gives individual team members the opportunity to make decisions that affect the whole.Encourage cross-functional collaborationJust because employees work in different departments does not mean that they can not work together – after all, they work towards the same goal as part of a larger company. Knowing what other teams are working on can encourage teams to collaborate when tasks and goals overlap.5. Define the purpose of different communication channelsMost teams have several communication tools at hand, but they are only useful if the team knows how and when to use them. Help employees by clearly defining the purpose of each communication channel. The article is produced by Brand Studio in collaboration with Asana and not an article by Dagens industri

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