Can too many rules and regulations inhibit productivity?
The goal of maximising productivity is one shared by the vast majority of SMEs across the UK, mainly as it helps to increase sales and drive brand awareness.
However, too many rules and procedures in workplaces up and down the length of the country may actually be impeding potential growth.
That is according to the professional HR body the CIPD, who suggest that employers should encourage their workers to use their initiative more often.
Not only does this encourage them to think more in their role but it also means the work is more stimulating which enables an individual to enjoy their job more.
When questioned on what would make them more productive in the workplace, some 40% of respondents said ‘interesting work’.
Being able to use initiative was also named in 39% of cases while a quarter of workers wanted their role to incorporate tasks which match their skill sets.
The major barriers to productivity were found to be unnecessary rules and a lack of resources – both issues identified by 28% of workers. Office politics meanwhile were deemed disruptive by 24% of workers.
According to the report, providing employees with greater independence to manage their own tasks not only motivates them but it also encourages them to work harder.
The key to the survey is that provides a viewpoint from the employee, providing firms with a unique insight into the best approaches that they could adopt.
Setting staff free not only encourages innovation but it is essential to driving sales and creating new products and ideas.
This could prove to be a masterstroke for firms who are trying to achieve great things but who are limited by their finances.
Increasing engagement among staff should also be a focus according to the study, which suggested that engagement levels among the UK workforce have fallen by 3% in the past 12 months.
Any firm believing that they are not operating efficiently may wish to consider a restructuring to cut unnecessary spending or they could undertake a review of their practices.
Such approaches should help to streamline a business and help to ensure that the focus remains on building for a successful future.
By Phil Smith