The Hard Cost of In-Action
Last week I wrote an article that illustrated how to calculate your hourly worth. It opened up the door of awareness to the correlation between productivity/action and financial gains based on that action. Re-read the article here before moving on, to grasp this article.
The hard costs of in-action and unproductive time is a heavy ransom to pay on a daily basis when you’re not aware of where your time is going. The book The One Thing is a fantastic method to employ in your life, both personal and professionally, to keep you focused on your micro-goals and achieve higher productivity. If you are an employee of a company, have you thought how much of an impact your productivity makes on your company? If you are an employer, have you thought how much of an impact your systems, your technology or your culture makes on your company? I will illustrate a simple calculation for you to use to bring awareness into your productive life, based on the hard cost and lost the potential income of where you spend your time.
Pay is $15 per hour (less taxes)
250 work days in 2018
Sally waits 10 minutes per workday on her computer to turn on and sits in her chair while waiting. Additionally, Sally is an important employee of the company and spends 20 minutes per work day searching her email for important client notes.
In total, Sally utilizes at least 30 minutes of her workday waiting on her computer to turn on and searching for emails.
30 minutes X 250 work days = 7,500 minutes
7,500 minutes / 60 minutes per hour = 125 hours per year
125 hours per year X $15 per hour = $1,875 paid to Sally to wait on her computer to turn on and search her emails
The cost of that slow computer and antiquated email system costs Sally’s employer $1,875 per year. Multiply that times how many employees you have and you have a realistic number to calculate.
Expansion of Example 1:
Let’s say Sally is a high producer and bills her customers $100 per hour for her premium quality work. Based on the calculation above, we will take the number of hours per year spent waiting on her computer to turn on and search for emails and work from there.
125 hours per year X $100 per hour billed for Sally’s work = $12,500 of potential lost income due to waiting
$1,875 is a hard cost paid to the employee, and $12,500 is a soft cost that translates to potential lost income due to waiting for her computer to turn on and searching for emails.
This method and calculation is meant to bring awareness to where your systems, culture or technology may be lacking OR on the other hand excelling the productivity in the workplace. In my business, I do not expect to account for every minute used by every employee. I do the contrary and provide as free of a workplace as possible for my staff to thrive.
I constantly look at my behavior and my company’s behavior to gauge where our time is being spent and how fulfilled my staff is with the work they are performing. It is a balance of being productive to earn money for the company and fulfillment of the individual by the work they perform. Without one or the other, quality may lack, or turn-over may be high. When I calculate these numbers for my company I look at the following:
How much time is spent interpreting a policy or procedure to solve a current customer issue?
How much time is my staff waiting for their technology to find the information they need?
How many times do my staff forget their password and spend 10 minutes trying to remember their login to reset it?
When I ran the calculations and found the numbers to be too high for my liking, I started asking my staff investigative questions like the following:
What are the most common issues our customer’s experience?
Where do you save important client files so the other staff members can find them?
Are you using our secure password portal to keep your passwords straight and secure?
I do not pit myself against the employee; it is highly likely not their intentional doing to take $1,875 per year to sit and wait. Employees want to be productive and do the jobs that have been asked of them. The three questions above are asked to the people that experience, on a daily basis, the questions you’re asking. It is crucial to enroll them in the possibility that these questions, should they bring a fix in short order, will increase productivity and fulfillment of their work without having to cut through red tape.
Consider this method the next time you are looking at your income statement or feel frustration when you think you should be making more! Unite as a team, enroll your staff and work together on the issues that face your company’s profitability. It is everyone’s lives in the mix, not just the owners or key employees.
I am open to suggestions, comments, and you sharing your story. You may direct message me by replying to this email or going to https://www.facebook.com/adam.dellos or https://www.instagram.com/hikingrugger
Have a great day today!
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