7 Reasons Why Writing a Procedure For Your Business Is Actually Profitable!
Last Updated on July 31, 2014 by Owen McGab Enaohwo
You’re treading water in your business. You’re looking for ways to grow, you’ve heard and seen examples of business leaders documenting procedures and delegating tasks successfully to employees.
The businesses that document procedures and delegate usually succeed. Those that don’t, miss out on opportunities.
You know this, but you’re looking for just a little more proof before you invest time and effort to documenting detailed procedures for your business.
In this article you’ll discover 7 excellent reasons why writing a procedure document for your business is actually a profitable investment!
Documenting procedures will do the following:
1. Allow Someone Who Makes Less Money than You to Properly Handle Your Tasks
Is it the most efficient use of your time to manage your email inbox or would it be better spent analyzing new opportunities?
Today, business leaders like Tim Ferriss are finding that delegating tasks, including email, make time for other tasks like adding new clients and customers, which increases revenue.
Delegating tasks can cut costs and increase revenue, but you can’t delegate a task without a documented business procedure.
People can’t read your mind. There is a lot of lost time and discovery when you delegate without clear direction on what should be done.
If you want someone to filter your email inbox for you they will need exact details on how to handle each type of message. They will need clear direction and templates for responses and organizing so they can respond to emails just as you would.
Business owners often run into trouble with delegation because they are so used to doing everything on their own. They don’t write down the procedure and it can lead to delegation failure.
For instance Web designers who want to grow their business from a freelance business to a large design firm need to document design procedures so they can hire less expensive designers to handle client work. The design procedure needs to include every detailed step that the design needs to follow including instructions on how it should be done.
By documenting the procedure, the new designer or designers can complete the task effectively making sure the business remains successful and the entrepreneur can move into a high level role overseeing more projects, which brings in more revenue for the growing firm.
2. Make You More Efficient and Eliminate Unnecessary Costs
You might have essential tasks and you might not be doing them in the ideal way. Documenting a procedure will allow you to discover unnecessary steps. You can document the new procedure and follow it each time you perform the task.
Have you ever discovered a new way to drive to a familiar destination that saved you a few minutes?
This happens to each of us from time to time. We are so used to the way we do something like driving to work that when we take out a map for curiosity’s sake we might notice there is a faster way to complete the task.
When you document your procedures you give yourself a chance to improve the process, which cuts costs and frees up your time to grow revenue.
Documenting the procedure will also help you complete the task with fewer mistakes, which also cuts costs and times.
Business managers often go through monthly reports. It’s common for these managers to work in Excel spreadsheets going over the numbers. There is a lot of copying and pasting of the numbers. If the managers were to review their reporting procedure and document it they would likely discover that there are better alternatives to completing the task like creating macros in Excel or using other software tools to automate the process.
Managers typically also have monthly meetings with their direct reports. They meet for an hour going over the monthly performance and monthly updates. The manager could document this meeting procedure. They would likely find that having one meeting with all direct reports to provide general updates along with shorter individual meetings saves time for the manager and for the direct reports.
Document your procedures and re-document existing procedures. The exercise will likely open your eyes to opportunities that make your tasks more efficient opening you up to have time for tasks that grow revenue.
3. Make Your Employees More Efficient and Reduce Expenses
In businesses that lack procedures you’ll often find that employees have their own way for handling tasks.
While this can make each individual happy it can lead to inefficiency, which cuts down on profits because you’re paying some employees more because they’re taking longer to complete certain tasks.
Your team might be doing tasks in different ways. Documenting the best way to perform the task in a procedure will allow everyone to be more efficient.
Managers often go through extensive budgeting processes. Each department within a business likely has different processes for completing the budget. By documenting procedures for crossover tasks within the budgeting process your teams can find new efficiencies for completing the task saving time and giving them an opportunity to focus on other areas of the business.
Service teams would also benefit from procedures. When people email and call with questions and issues, procedures can provide templates for responses. These templates make it possible to solve problems faster freeing up support teams to handle more issues cutting down on costs.
4. Improve Communications between Your Employees and enable them to Avoid Costly Mistakes
One of the biggest time killers and profit killers in business is miscommunication. Internal and external communication is a big issue when there are no documented procedures. When things are clear with procedures there is less need for communication and less argument over how things should be done.
Most businesses still have loose email response templates letting employees respond in a variety of different ways. Writing long emails when short emails would suffice or writing emails without enough detail. It kills efficiency and profit.
Businesses that document specific business email procedures for each employee to follow can improve email efficiency freeing up time for more important tasks like generating revenue and cutting costs.
Additionally, businesses that document procedures for when an employee should ask for help can save time and effort. Many employees are too quick to ask for help with something when they could simply find the answer with a quick Google search. Others might not ask for help soon enough wasting time and money.
Documenting the proper procedure for help in certain situations makes your team more efficient freeing them up to do other tasks that make you money.
5. Make it Easier to Hire New Employees to Scale Your Business; Improve New Hire Training, Reduce Training Duration, and Cut Costs
Procedures will put less stress on you and your staff to train new team members. If hiring procedures are followed you’ll be able to hire the right people for each job and they’ll be able to follow procedures on their own without additional help.
Sam Carpenter at Centratel found that documenting procedures cut his staff training time from six weeks to three days. That’s an enormous savings and it made his team much more productive, which put more money into the business.
Better training will also make your new hires more productive at their jobs. With proper procedures your team can train new hires in a way that cuts back on mistakes and improves their performance. With better performance you get more sales and with fewer mistakes your costs are cut.
That’s how you add profit to your business by documenting procedures.
6. Make Your Business Safer; prevent Employees from Getting Hurt on the Job and Reduce Costs due to Worker’s Comp.
Image Credit: Foxtongue
When you and your team are performing tasks the proper way it makes your business safer. There are fewer mistakes and for some businesses mistakes can lead to injuries, which are not good for the person injured and also costly for the business.
There was a case of a family-owned construction business in Denver. The firm ran into trouble for not having properly trained employees, which could have led to high costs if someone had been injured. Insurance only pays for certain things leaving the business liable for certain expenses.
Not only do you have to pay injury-related expenses for the person that’s injured, you have to pay to hire someone to replace them, which takes money out of your pocket to train and get them on board.
7. Help You Avoid Legal Issues, Cut Insurance Costs, Fines and Lawyer Fees
Many businesses work in industries with strict guidelines and threats of legal action should things not be done correctly.
Procedures ensure things are being done exactly as they should minimizing risk of legal action.
How about that family business from Denver we mentioned in the last point – without being able to properly ensure that each employee had been properly trained the firm was fined thousands of dollars. If firms have issues and claim insurance the premiums go up and in some cases the company can’t even get insurance again until procedures are created.
With proper procedures your business can properly train employees so they know what they can and can’t do from the legal perspective. Taking the time to document this in a procedure can cut down on the cost of lawyers and fines when an issue happens.
Do You Want a Profitable Business? Start Writing Procedure Documents for Your Business!
You know that documenting procedures is something other successful businesses do and you can now see the benefits it can bring to your bottom-line profits.
Hopefully the reason listed above provide the proof you need to know that documenting business procedures can put money in your pocket by adding revenue, cutting costs and increasing profits.
That’s the goal of any business.
That’s why so many businesses document their procedures.
Quickly and Easily Document Procedures for your business with SweetProcess. Click here to Sign up for a FREE 14-Day Trial of SweetProcess!