Small businesses need to do more to address productivity issues

The majority of the UK’s small businesses could be doing a lot more to address productivity issues within their company, new research has revealed.

According to BrightHR, just 8% of firms are regularly monitoring productivity metrics and less than a quarter of bosses believes it is something that needs closer attention.

When asked about current productivity levels, 38% of firms did not know about performance while 32% said it was less important than monitoring the bottom line.

Those in the education, media and marketing, sales and professional services sectors were most likely to be unaware of productivity levels.

The biggest drains on productivity were found to be HR administration, named by 31% of respondents, as well as office politics (29%) and fun and play in the workplace (28%).

In the case of the latter, the report noted that fun in the workplace can have a positive impact on mental wellbeing and productivity.

Interestingly though, 28% of staff believe that play in the workplace has a greater negative effect on productivity than administration tasks, absenteeism, staff training and lateness.

The report suggests that productivity is flatlining in the UK when in theory it should be booming – businesses are therefore being encouraged to take action.

Low productivity can have many negative impacts on a company, as it can damage a firm’s reputation if the quality of work is not up to standard while sales can also drop.

This can impact on the bottom line of a company and may even leave it facing administration if issues are allowed to fester for too long.

Technology can be used for the benefit of companies, as it carries the ability to boost efficiency by automating tasks and enabling greater flexibility.

However, firms still need to mitigate some of the negative factors associated with technology if they are to see long term success.

By Phil Smith

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