Measuring productivity is vital for consistent improvement and development. Regular evaluations are a doorway to betterment. As much as performance management is important, developing strategies to gauge progress is not an easy feat.
If you are having trouble finding ways to measure productivity then you are not alone. HR managers often find it difficult to measure the productivity of their employees since they do not have a standard ‘scale’ to measure the efficiency with.
How should you measure productivity then? Count the number of words you have penned, calculate the time spent on a task, number of tasks completed in a week, or the number of hours you have stayed awake?
Unfortunately, none of these are the right ways of measuring productivity, these calculations will only add more burden onto your shoulders instead of lessening it.
This article will give you an insight into the ways of assessing productivity and making improvements.
What is Productivity?
First of all, let us understand what productivity means. Productivity is a measure of the efficiency of a company or an individual commonly defined as the ratio between input and output.
Productivity grows with the increase in output. It does not measure the cost of resources or the capital earned, instead, it’s a measure of how efficiently the work is done.
If you take 6 hours to complete a task and another employee finishes the same task in 5 hours then he is more productive than you. Work it!
Companies are always looking for ways to enhance their efficiency. They are always on the lookout to develop better strategies and improve the working environment.
Why Is Measuring Productivity Important?
Knowing the ins and outs of work progress, the overall process, and the strengths and weaknesses of the process make it easy to improve efficiency.
Once agile PMs have identified the shortcomings of the process, they can work on different strategies to fix those loopholes. They can also take notice of the positive points and implement those in their projects in the future.
Productivity measurement also allows HR managers to keep track of their employees’ progress over time. As a result, they can introduce training programs or workshops to enhance the skill set of their employees. It also aids them in future recruitment.
Measuring productivity at work is important for the betterment of employees’ performance and, in turn, the performance of the company.
After PMs find out how to measure productivity at work, they can enhance the performance of their team as well as the overall efficiency of the company. Isn’t that great?
How To Measure Productivity?
How To Assess Productivity? Assessing productivity is not as arduous a process as people would usually think. In actuality, it is rather simple and easy.
This section will give an insight into how to measure productivity in the workplace. There are several ways to calculate efficiency for individuals as well as an organization.
It’ll help you understand how to measure productivity in the workplace. Let’s take a look at these strategies right away. Off you go!
The Input-Output Formula
The input-output formula is the easiest and most popular method of measuring productivity. It’s the most efficient way of number crunching and getting an actual set of numbers as output.
Here’s how to assess productivity via the simple productivity formula works:
- Identify the output to be measure. It can be the number of tasks completed or the number of products made.
- Choose the input. It can be the number of hours put into the work or the cost of raw materials used.
- Take the ratio of input over output.
- To measure the cost-efficiency ratio, convert the figures into US dollars or your local currency.
- Calculate the non-productivity ratio for the final report.
This formula is mostly used in industries or factories where input and output can be directly measured in terms of products made or jobs completed. Unfortunately, it is not applicable in complex working environments where other factors need to be considered.
Since this formula does not cater to all businesses and individuals, it is wise to use this formula under other productivity metrics for acute efficiency.
The 360 Degree Feedback Strategy
This strategy may sound a bit overwhelming but believe us it’s not. It’s as easy as ABC.
It’s a whole circle of feedback. Basically, what it does is that calculates the productivity of an employee via feedback given by other employees. It may seem daunting, but it’s more effective than one would think.
In the 360-degree feedback strategy, the seniors and juniors of an individual evaluate the working efficiency of an individual and give their feedback keeping the relevant metrics in mind.
To do this efficiently, individuals must understand the roles and responsibilities of a position and what is expected of that role. Keeping those expectations in mind, the peers can evaluate the ability of a specific employee.
The use of this strategy requires the team to regularly interact with one another and be engaged in an integrated environment. The employees are often trained before the feedback so that their opinions are not overshadowed by their personal feelings and their feedback is from a neutral, unbiased perspective.
The feedback is not only helpful for PMs but is also beneficial for individuals themselves. It can help them focus on their strengths and weaknesses and help them improve their efficiency. It’s a valuable method of measuring employees’ productivity.
It caters to many factors and is not only focused on the working ability of a person. It also takes into account other factors that may prove beneficial for the organization. After all, it’s 360 degrees!
Time Tracking And Timesheets
Time tracking via online project management software is one of the best methods of measuring productivity especially for work-at-home or remote jobs.
Top management can download apps or use project management software for time management. An efficient project management software such as nTask can help PMs keep an eye on the real-time progress of their team members and chart their billable hours.
Employers can gather the productivity data from online metrics such as the numbers of tasks completed, the time to complete each task, probable issues and risks involved in the process, the finances involved, etc.
nTask’s time tracking and timesheet management software offers several baggable features. We have listed them below for your ease:
- Improve efficiency by keeping track of non-billable resources and tasks
- Flexibility in billing by keeping track of billable hours
- Automated budget reminders that remind you of the depletion of finances
- An automated web timer allows you to track time without having to juggle between different tools
- nTask’s mobile app, available on iOS and Android, makes time tracking easier
- Manual time entries help update and track the time of your team
- Employees working remotely can submit their timesheets with a single click
- Allows employees to rectify their mistakes, if any, in the timesheet and send it for approval manually
- Third-party integrations make it easy to keep everything in one place
nTask can help you save your time and keep track of your team members’ progress rather easily. Sign up at nTask and improve your time management for increased productivity.
Monitoring Social Media Use
Employees tend to waste their time jumping from one social media to another. Their time is either spent on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, all of which negatively affect the productivity of the employees.
It’s a confrontational strategy that limits employees’ personal use and puts them on the spot. This strategy might not work and might harm employees’ freedom so it’s not very advisable.
Profit = Productivity
For businesses all around the world, the profit generated over some time is equal to the productivity of an organization. The more the profit the better the productivity.
For small and medium enterprises (SMEs) measuring productivity with the amount of capital generated makes perfect sense. For example, if a company’s profit margin increases from 1 million to 2 million in a year then it’s more of a testament to increased efficiency.
Measuring creativity via profit generated is also an effective method since this method ensures that the time spent on creative thinking is not taken into account. In this case, profits accumulated reflect the productivity of creative thinkers.
Profit = productivity is the simplest method of all, but it excludes some other factors due to which it may not be feasible to use this method in every company.
Daily Check-In Strategy
This strategy is a straightforward one for measuring productivity at work. PMs using this strategy are not concerned about the output but want their team members to stay focused on their tasks.
Through this strategy, employees are required to provide daily updates on their progress and how much has been achieved so far. These updates can be daily, monthly, and quarterly to make sure that the members stay on track.
How to measure productivity at work and inform the top management about the progress? The answer to this question depends on the PMs and the organization. There are many ways which can be used for regular check-ins, some of these include:
- Updates via daily emails
- Use Google Hangouts
- Email timesheets via nTask’s Timesheet management software
- Via a conference call or phone call
This method works for employees who find it hard to stay on track or those who need constant evaluations for efficient performance. It also enables PMs to stay updated about the working of their employees and their overall performance.
Productivity Measurement Is Job Well Done!
Now that you understand how to assess productivity, know that the take here is a two-way improvement.
These productivity strategies are not only a source of assessing employees’ productivity but are also a gateway for companies to have a glimpse at their working environment.
Through the results obtained from these productivity strategies, PMs get an outlook of their standing in the market, the skills of their talent pool, and the efficiency of their assets.
Along with these, measuring productivity also creates an amicable environment encouraging communication between the employees and the top management. The regular exchange of feedback keeps both parties updated on their positions.
Besides, it also helps individuals and companies stay focused. Feedback reports help companies identify the loopholes; they can then rectify these mistakes. Similarly, individuals can keep an eye on their progress and focus on their improvement.
All in all, you measure productivity, you improve your efficiency, hence increasing the profitability.
Ways To Improve Productivity
An important point to note is that understanding how to measure productivity at work is not the result here. The outcome is the resulting strategies developed to help improve productivity.
Once employers have identified the pluses and minuses of their management and the strengths and weaknesses of their employees, they can devise strategies to improve their productivity.
Now that you understand how to measure productivity in the workplace, let’s take a look at the ways you can better your efficiency. There are several strategies employers can employ to enhance their productivity. These include:
- Set SMART, achievable goals
- Create an action plan and prioritize tasks
- Set regular meetings and evaluate progress
- Communicate employees’ expectations and responsibilities
- Set your eyes on the difficult tasks
- Stay focused and motivated
- Acknowledge the strengths and weaknesses of the management and the employees
- Avoid distractions
- Practice and training regularly
- Improve working environment
To make it easier, PMs can employ the use of online project management software e.g. nTask. nTask offers a wide variety of features through which employers can not only keep track of their employees’ performance but can also develop strategies to improve the output.
Some of the most fundamental tools offered by nTask include:
- Efficient time management via time tracking and timesheets
- Team management software for communication and collaboration
- Easy task management for efficient working
- Project management to keep track of your employees’ progress
- Issue tracking so that you can effectively manage the process
- Risk management to make sure you steer clear of every problem
- Gantt charts and Kanban boards for visualization of performance
Try the best productivity app = nTask.
Manage projects, tasks, to-do lists, and timesheets all in one place. Sign up today!
All these features make nTask one of the most trusted and sought-after project management software. Head over to nTask’s official website to learn more, explore new horizons, and conquer productivity on the get-go.
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