When you think of summertime, what springs to mind?
For most people, it’s things like sunshine, beaches, outdoor activities, and barbecues. Let’s face it – work is not the first thing most people think of.
In business terms, this means that employees may become a little more lethargic than usual, as they start daydreaming about getting outside and enjoying the sunshine or jetting off on a summer vacation.
In fact, research shows that workplace productivity takes a nosedive between June and August each year, falling by around 20%.
With that figure in mind, the question on most business owner’s lips is – how can we motivate people and maintain a good level of productivity during the summer months?
A quick definition of employee productivity
It may seem obvious what we mean by employee productivity, but there are some misconceptions around the subject which we’ll clear up before moving on.
A common misconception is that productivity means getting more things done or tasks completed per day.
In reality, productivity is all about consistently getting the most important tasks done.
In a measurable sense, employee productivity refers to the amount of output that an employee produces over a certain timeframe.
A simple example is a bricklayer who lays 700 bricks a day. This type of productivity can be used to compare the production output of another bricklayer who only manages to lay 500 bricks per day.
When it comes to office workers, it can be more difficult to measure and compare productivity accurately. If raw data is available, such as the number of emails or calls made per day by a sales team member, then that can be used.
However, it is usually best to combine measurements of quantity and quality. For a salesperson, you can include the quantity of deals closed or leads gained, as well as the number of emails and calls made per day.
Either way, whether you are using raw figures or a combined set of data, measuring productivity accurately is important, especially during the summer months when production has a tendency to slide.
6 Tips to boost staff productivity in the summertime
1. Make a plan
Now that you’re aware of a potential productivity slump during the summer months, you can prepare for it. In other words – you should make sure that you have a plan in place before June hits.
Your planning priority should be to make sure that annual leave is booked up within the required notice period and that there are no clashes between key staff members and different teams. Any cover that may be needed should be arranged well in advance too.
In terms of workload, project timelines need to be planned more carefully during the summer months to allow for any possible drop in efficiency. You may need to reprioritise certain activities and tasks, depending on the availability of key staff members.
2. Allow more flexible schedules
One thing that all managers and business owners need to be aware of is that employees who are parents may need more flexibility during the summer months. Often staff will need to look after children when they are home school for certain times of the day.
Many businesses allow more flexible working hours during this time to allow for childcare. Alternatively, working from home or hybrid working can allow employees to fit their schedule around their family commitments more easily, while still maintaining productivity.
3. Boost morale and focus with rewards
Boosting summer productivity may mean that you need to change your KPI targets and add incentives for staff that meet or exceed them. For example, you can add extra rewards at lower thresholds than they may be during other seasons, to keep people more focused and on track.
Also, don’t be afraid to embrace the more carefree and relaxed summer vibe with a summer social. Holding an outdoor summer party or barbecue for your staff can be a good way to create positive energy that will be taken back into the office when the work starts again.
4. Enable staff to work smarter
An excellent way to boost productivity is to put new technology, tools, or processes in place to help employees work smarter, rather than harder.
For instance, you could implement a new CRM that makes life much easier for salespeople.
A CRM management tool such as Efficy can save hours by automating a large number of tasks such as opportunity tracking and storing lead details, which will boost both efficiency and productiveness. Empower your employees and grow your business with Efficy, you can try it for free today by booking a demo.
5. Increase communication
It can be tempting to let internal communications slide a little bit in the summer months as so many people are away on vacation. This is a mistake, as internal communications are key to motivating staff and maintaining productivity.
Why not make your internal communications even more engaging during the summertime? You can ask staff to provide photos of their vacation or summer stories that can be sent out in your newsletter or on your company intranet page.
6. Increase staff breaks
It may sound counter-intuitive, but offering staff longer breaks can actually improve productivity rather than reduce it. Longer breaks allow staff to manage their stress more effectively and come back to their desks in a refreshed state of mind. A research study into the effect of increased breaks on medical surgeons, found that they made less mistakes and performance was improved considerably.
During the summer months, a longer break allows employees to get outdoors and stretch their legs, which will give them a positive boost in terms of physical and mental health. It’s pretty obvious that this will be good for overall employee productivity. Therefore, you may want to consider increasing a standard 10 minute break to 20 minutes and encourage staff to get outside for a walk in the fresh air.
Boost all types of productivity with a powerful CRM tool
As you can probably tell from the six tips listed above, the key to successfully boosting summer work rate is to plan things more effectively, be flexible, and make day-to-day tasks easier for your employees.
Individual, team, and overall business productivity will all increase substantially if people can work more efficiently and there is a solid plan in place.
A CRM software such as Efficy can help you to achieve your summer efficiency goals by providing planning and management tools, enhanced data capture, improved reporting features, and task automation.
If you’re interested in boosting all of the different types of productivity and would like to explore how Efficy can help you to achieve this goal, then get in touch with one of our expert advisors today to book a demo.
Find out how Efficy is the best option for your business!