Oftentimes as business owners we’re all juggling many different hats…. sales, strategy, admin, finance, marketing, customer fulfillment… and the list goes on…. and on… and on!
It became obvious to me and the clients I’ve been working with, that it’s sometimes hard to take a step back and ask yourself, am I investing my time in the right activities? More importantly, what am I doing that I shouldn’t be doing?
Three essential components that we work on at Streamline For Success with our clients are PROCESS, SYSTEMS & PEOPLE.
You’ll notice that Infusionsoft or any other CRM tool, is just one tool in the systems mix and in fact isn’t actually the first thing we start with (or the only thing that will help your business succeed).
The important component to start with is around PROCESS.
Here are some steps to help get more clarity on your processes that can help generate $$’s in savings.
1. What core processes are in my business?
Clearly outline the core processes in your business. For example, how do you take payments, what happens when an enquiry that comes into your business, how does someone booking an appointment, sending proposals etc. What are the processes that are critical and continually done to operate your business?
2. What is the detail of these processes?
It’s important then to look within each process to clarify the detail of each process. Of course you will have numerous processes that make your business run, so focus on just one, one that you do regularly, takes lots of time and that you could automate. Some questions to ask yourself are what are the key steps, who does them, when do they get done, what are the inputs required to complete them, what are the existing tools/systems involved, how long does it take etc.
3. How can I make this process more efficient?
By getting clearer about the process, and ideally documenting it out, this will allow you to identify opportunities to make it better. Also, this will help you review where you spend your time, how you can automate and utilize systems and if needed embrace a team to fulfill on more of your business processes.
For example, I was speaking with a Marketing Director two weeks ago and their business has multiple locations. At present when a lead comes in they need to manually go in and assign this to the right store depending on the prospects location details. What we did was we automated this ONE STEP only, so the time didn’t need to be done by this person or any person moving forward. Process Updated – Check, System Updated – Check, People – Labour Cost 0. Immediately from implementing this change, with the volume of leads coming in, they were saving 20 minutes per day manually doing this step. This is saving them 86 HOURS per year!
Not only can you look at this from a time saving perspective, however also a cost saving perspective too – this all adds up! Let’s just say this Marketing Director even got an Assistant to do this task at $25/hour – that’s a saving of $2,150 for the year!
This is just one of many examples!
Remember, Automation is only powerful if you use it.
I’d like to add to this statement…
Automation is SUPER CHARGED when there is a FINANCIAL RETURN! 🙂
Take some action from this blog post and complete the activity above.
(NOTE: Ready to use more automation in your business to make more sales with less effort – even if you don’t have a fancy system? Check out the Marketing Automation Game Plan and discover in this free 3-part video series the proven steps you must follow to successfully transform your business with automation. Learn more now.)