A time audit is a valuable tool to measure productivity. Are you putting your energy into efforts that put money in the bank? Or are you just shuffling papers? The end goal is to save time and make money. During the time audit process, you will be able to see where you and your employees are spending too much time. It will also show where you need to be directing more energy.
Have you ever worked a full day and felt like you didn’t accomplish any one task in full? By conducting a time audit you be able to see how often you are starting tasks and not finishing them. The time audit process will also help paint a clearer picture about tasks that can be delegated to other members of your staff or outsourced to virtual assistant services like E-Typist.
This step-by-step process shows you how to conduct a simple time audit.
1. Get a Timer
Find a timer that you can use to set for a specific interval of time. This can be the timer on your phone or through a computer program.
2. Set to Intervals
Set the timer for intervals of 60, 30 or 15 minutes. Do not start on the hour as you are more likely to be at natural stopping points on the hour. If you start your first timer at 9:43, you would have the next one go off at 10:43 if you did intervals of 60 minutes.
3. Write Down What You Do
Each time the timer goes off, jot down what you are doing at that moment. This running tally can be written on paper or be recorded on a digital log. Keep it somewhere that’s easy to access so you don’t spend too much time writing.
4. Repeat Throughout the Week or Month
Repeat this process on different days through the week. If you do it on a Monday when you tend to have more phone calls and emails to make, also make sure you do it on a Thursday when you have more meetings.
5. Analyze the Results: Make a Spreadsheet
When you have gathered data from a few different days across a few different weeks, analyze the results. You can do this by putting each task into a spreadsheet.
Column 1. Rank the Importance (or Value)
Assign each task an importance ranking from 1 being not important at all to 5 being absolutely necessary. This will force you to assign value to how you are spending your time.
Column 2. Rank the Income Contribution
Next, create a second column to rank how well that task contributes to your income from 1 being very little to 5 being significantly. For example, folding leaflets vs. signing a new client. While they are interrelated, you can’t do them simultaneously. So, which one does the most for your bottom-line in that moment?
Column 3. Who Can vs. Who Needs to Do
Finally, list the people who are capable of completing that task. You may be hoarding all of the work in your office or organization. Once you have a birdseye view of your office’s workload, you will start to see opportunities to delegate, reassign, redistribute, or even outsource!
Once you analyze the numbers, you are in good shape if you are seeing 75% of your time spent on necessary tasks. Take a look at the low tasks and ask yourself if you are really the person in your organization that needs to be doing them.
Could You Outsource for Less?
Did you have your lead sales employee folding brochures for 30 minutes last week? If the printing company only charges $5.00 extra to fold your order, then you are spending more than that in 30 minutes of wages, and your top performer may have missed an opportunity to close a sale. For the tasks that you can delegate, keep in mind the income ranking you assigned. For your lowest ranked tasks, it may actually be more profitable to outsource than to use the time and energy of your employees.
Delegate to Outside Professionals.
E-Typist is available to take on your transcription now! Fast turnaround times on transcription and drafting. We also offer virtual assistant services to help you manage your calendars, filings and more to eliminate those tasks that eat up your productive hours. All of those tasks you labeled necessary but that you also marked as available to outsource, that’s where we come in! With our reasonable pricing, you’ll see that this outsourcing pays for itself and gives you the time to direct your energy towards tasks only you can complete.
To learn how E-Typist can help you manage your productivity better, visit our contact us page or call (330) 474-7079.