For many of us, we are working longer hours for the same amount of money and our stress level never ceases to hit new highs. We ponder how did we get here? When does it end? Can I just quit? I cannot answer these questions but I am not the type to sit idle either. I am a fixer by nature.
A Business Operations Consultant can shed some light by offering ways to fix these situations of feeling stuck, trapped by endless amount of work that keeps piling up. It’s possible, they are the lifeline your organization needs to help improve or revamp the most painful business processes.
Focus time has become such a critical issue that there are whole apps, webinars, mindfulness programs dedicated to it. With all the phone calls, Zoom meetings, and push notifications from the phone and email we have lost our ability to achieve deep focus and achieve those aha moments, not to mention completing the regular tasks of the day. We provided a list below of what a typical Business Operations Consultant will focus on so you can gain back that focus time for what you do best or better yet, achieve the elusive goal of free time.
Build a buffer between your team & distracting phones calls
We all get them, some more than others but why do businesses receive calls? Let’s break this down into typical categories of requests from the people that are calling you.
- Sales – First Impressions
- All for profit businesses should have this as there first department line. Who does this line to transfer to? For many small and micro business, the sales line will fall on the owner and his or her sales team but should there be a buffer between the caller and the sales team?
- Customer Service – Support
- Another no brainer department extension is Customer Service or Support. We obviously want that product or service support to the appropriate person but what software systems and processes does that entail? Does who the call route to vary from day to night?
- Our clients all at some point have questions regarding their bills. Who is the POC for handling all these issues? What systems do they have access to for answering these questions?
Not all answering services are created equal.
Implementing an answering service can be your best friend or worst nightmare. A Business Operations Consultant should have reading scripts for the operator to follow when taking prospective calls. Next generation Answer Service also have the capability of implementing API integrations for connecting your answering service to your favorite software platform. All intake notes from the call will be placed there.
You can lose business because the intake is too long and you provide a poor reading script for the answer service to follow. The script must account for human patience and the problem or inquiry the caller is trying to solve. It’s a delicate act of asking the right questions to patch over to a specialist without annoying the caller. The free time gained from you and your team can take on is profound. Everyone can finally take on more meaningful tasks if the answering service is deployed correctly.
Most people fail to understand what goes into creating a workflow for success and what impact on operational efficiencies (code for free time) occur until they see it in action. A savvy team must be called upon for allowing integrations between the answering service application to talk to your application. Once the Answering Service is deployed correctly, your team can take any of the departments listed above, and the collected caller information at their finger tips. You are no longer tethered to a desk. Calls are patched in and choose whether to take the call or not. All the information is there on your CRM phone app as you stroll down the beach, walking your dog and enjoying the sun.
Automate tasks with a ticketing system.
As you may now understand, we are a very process-oriented business. There are simply too many moving parts in all our processes for us not to be but this is not only true in Managed IT Services. Big or small, it should be for all businesses if you or your team ever want to achieve the elusive goal of free time. Our suggestion is to start with some low cost ticketing system solution and scale to something bigger when you understand more of what you want out of a system and time is right for you to switch.
Access a very easy to CRM for viewing new and existing client contacts.
Start small and eventually grow big. We see many businesses go head first into the deep end without learning how to swim. The right Business Operations Consult will recommend a low cost solution that is easy to use for adding contacts, log activity, and follow ups. Plus, they will need a software developer to integrate your phone system and answering service for the complete Digital Transformation experience. Some of these platforms will be embedded in an older platform that will require some data migration services to move all it over.
Just say no to more physical mail.
We never seem to get away from the physical mail. It haunts us and something important is missed the moment we think it’s all trash. This is just another mind numbing task for all of us that can be resolved by having the right recommendation for scanning, sorting, archiving the importing correspondence while deleting the junk mail.
As a business owner knows, hiring the right individual the first, second, or third time may not happen. It is important to create operating efficiencies around this too.
Onboarding is always a nightmare but it get becomes more managed when incorporated as project tasks in a project management system.
Grab real-time insights into where all your organizations money is going
Ok, let’s fast forward a little bit. Things are going great with the Business Operations Consultant. You now have achieved some new and business workflows that make onlookers feel you have a well-oiled machine. However, how are you managing all those monthly SaaS subscriptions, products and services you are reselling, marketing and advertising budgets? I highly recommend looking into a budget management system like Divvy to get over the tax season hurdle of coding all your expenses and quickly gaining insights as to where all the company’s money is going.
Create a knowledge base for Standard Operating Procedures
None of this course can be done without establishing some business Standard Operating Procedures and a general knowledge base of information for your organization. This is not a handbook that is tossed into the desk drawer after after the first day of work. This is hundred if not thousands of readily available documents of SOPs for taking on any situation. How do you see any of these procedures listed above going well about without guidance? Fortunately, there’s a lot of new innovative software that makes SOPs easy to use on a daily basis.
Business Operations Consultant Summary
Hopefully, we have got the creative juices going or maybe you are calculating just how much time is spent performing menial tasks when your time is better spent else where. For some micro business owners, it’s an upwards of 50% of their time on administrative headaches. For others in larger organizations, it may be the business is behind the times and may need a little kick in the ass.