How Assessing Your Business Now Can Help You in the Future
Use this time to uncover where your gaps and inefficiencies are so you’re better prepared going forward.
In an earlier blog post, we covered why technology matters to your cleaning or security business. In this post, we’re expanding on our overall guidance to use this time to really uncover where your gaps and inefficiencies are — specifically when it comes to conducting a company health check and making sure you’ve taken all possible steps to future-proof your business.
What is a health check?
A health check is an assessment that helps determine the current state of your organization and identify areas to improve efficiency and effectiveness. By factoring in your current and future company goals, a health check helps prioritize activities that provide the most value and biggest positive impact on your business operations.
What should you be considering during a health check?
Look at a wide variety of things including communications, payment collection, compliance, reporting, employee engagement and more. Think about what you want to provide to your employees and customers regardless of what’s happening in the world. Key health check questions include:
- What changes have you experienced in the last 30, 60 or 90 days? Remember to look back to your operations before COVID-19 and consider those experiences as well.
- Where are your pain points?
- What kinds of problems are you experiencing? Are they specific to certain operations, locations, functions, etc.?
- What gaps exist?
- What knowledge is missing? What don’t you know about your business that you wish you did?
What does it mean to future-proof your business?
Future proofing is the process of identifying possible future obstacles, stresses and threats to your business, and developing ways to minimize or overcome them so they don’t negatively impact your business past the point of recovery. In order to withstand problems that arise — be it cash flow, a stalled economy, a shift in the industry, etc. — the improvements and preparations you make not only have to be effective today, but in the future as well.
Many times, an operational problem can arise and you must find a way to deal with it in a hurry. It’s easy to let that solution become your repeatable process to prevent the problem from happening again because it worked “that one time.” And while it might prevent one problem, it could be costing you lost time and money because the process you’re relying on isn’t what’s ultimately best for your business. You need to be sure the choices you’re making are based on data, not habits.
How can you ensure your business is future proof?
For businesses with tight margins like security and cleaning contractors, finding ways to become more efficient is one of the few ways to reduce costs and see continued growth in the future. If you know there are areas for improvement when it comes to your operational processes, look to your software systems and data collection. Software is a big commitment for any company, so you want to make sure the software you’re investing in now is able to support you in the future. With the right software, you should be able to answer these future proofing questions:
- Do you have a data-driven understanding of your business’s performance?
- Do you have efficient automation for operations and workforce management activities?
- Does each department understand and own their role in the big picture of your company?
- Do you have the information you need to achieve strategic objectives?
The stage you’re in right now isn’t the stage you’ll be in forever. What is happening today within your business that you can look at and say, “I never want this to happen again?” It’s up to you to make sure it doesn’t. Planning for the future during a time of stress for your business means having stronger, more flexible processes to accommodate for growth and new challenges in the future.