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Workload Management: What All Businesses with a Limited Workforce Need

17 Sep


There are approximately 10 million job openings in the U.S.—but only 8.6 million people are looking for work. With the job market being this competitive, it is likely that most employers will be waiting until they find the perfect hire that checks all the boxes, all while making sure workload management is a top priority for the employees you already have.

Although your workforce may be limited, you still need to prepare your employees for success by providing them with the tools, resources, and expertise they need. To help you help your employees, we have a few recommendations to keep your workforce on track:

  1. Make sure your employees aren’t getting burnt out.
  2. Cross-train your employees.
  3. Start using time management software.
  4. Eliminate multitasking.
  5. Use an online project management platform.

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No One is Safe from Burnout

Believe it or not, burnout can have a powerfully negative impact on your business.

A study conducted by Gallup of approximately 7,500 full-time employees concluded that 23% of employees reported feeling burned out at work very often or always. In contrast, an additional 44% reported feeling burned out sometimes. Combined, that’s 67% of employees reporting different levels of burnout.

The more burnt out an employee is, the more likely they will be distracted at work or become unmotivated—leaving important work unfinished.

To help offset the effects of burnout, consider using an employee evaluation form to check up on your employees, their progress, and their burnout level.

The More They Know, the Better They’ll Be

Just because some of your employees’ workloads are a bit overbearing, doesn’t mean the majority of the staff shares this sentiment. The employees who have manageable workloads need to have a general knowledge of how to complete a colleague’s tasks—if not, projects and assignment may be prolonged.

An effective way to manage workloads is to rework assigned projects and responsibilities to distribute work more evenly across the team. This works best when employees are cross-trained in various areas and are knowledgeable on all used software systems within the department.

Yes, this may take up some more time during the onboard process. Yes, it may cost a bit more to train an employee in different areas. But it’s an investment that may prove its value down the road.

Too Much to Do, Not Enough Time

Workload management goes hand-in-hand with time management. In order to help your employees, manage their time without fault, consider providing them with an intuitive time management software platform that can track their time in/out, PTO, and sick leave.

While you don’t want to make it seem like “big brother” is watching, it can be a very hands-on way to ensure your employees are staying on track with their timing and completing their assignments in the most efficient way possible.

Multitasking isn’t Always the Most Efficient

Multitasking is not the most efficient way to get a lot done, especially when promoting better workload management practices. According to an article in the Harvard Business Review, multitasking leads to as much as a 40% drop in productivity.

It is much easier to focus on one task at a time—uninterrupted.

Prioritizing tasks and projects can have a great impact on the daily success of your employees. Employees may not innately know which projects are more important than others. In one-on-one or team meetings, leaders should be diving into top projects and goals for each week, highlighting which tasks or projects require a sense of urgency, and discuss next steps for incoming projects with competing priorities or completion dates.

Simple conversations can have a huge impact on individual and team productivity, along with making sure everyone is on the same page about where the team is at in relation to weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annual goals.

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Seek Help from a Project Management Platform

Project management tools are readily available and easily accessible, which will result in an incredible impact on your workload management efforts. Whether it’s an app that all of your employees can use to collaborate or a simple scheduling resource, it’ll be sure to help keep you organized while you’re keeping your employees organized.

Intimidated by new technology? Don’t worry. Project management platforms provide a number of tutorials to keep you on track, informed, and educated. Operating with a limited workforce can be a tough situation to deal with. Fortunately, there are a number of resources you can use to help get you through these challenges.

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