It’s the start of the new year and the perfect time to set fresh goals and new intentions for your business. Establishing clear business goals not only sets you on a path toward success, but provides an opportunity to measure progress from the year before. While it can be challenging to set goals, businesses that establish and track goals grow almost 30 times faster and when leadership and employees are aligned on these goals, they are over 70% more profitable.
But with shifting priorities in this “New Normal,” leading your business to success isn’t just about meeting revenue goals anymore. Having clear direction for your business, as well as great company culture, can keep employees engaged, motivated, and productive in their daily tasks. While higher engagement will help you meet your financial goals, success starts with having the right people, tools, and strategies in place first—especially when teams are working from home.
In this blog post, we’ll cover the top ways you can set your business up for success this year by focusing on communication, leadership, work-life balance, security, collaboration and more.
1. Invest in communication tools
Of the top factors that affect employee engagement with a company, leadership communication was considered the most important. Whether between teams, departments, executives, or even to customers, it’s clear that good communication has a big influence on how successful a business will be. Investing in the right tools is a great way to support communication from all levels of an organization. Communication software not only improves cross-departmental collaboration, but can create a space where all employees can stay engaged and informed on both business updates and personal announcements.
This software is especially important now, when almost 60% of U.S. employees work from home (and all over the world), and 17% of these workers state that one of their top challenges is poor communication. Providing a single channel for employees to interact helps minimize the risk of communication silos and disorganization. It also helps ensure a team member does not miss critical information while providing a centralized place to communicate to minimize information overload.
At FormAssembly, our entire company communicates daily with Google Meet and uses Slack organized by channels for each department, project, or interest to ensure everyone collaborates with the right information.
2. Get your team on the same page
Similar to streamlining communication, ensuring that your entire team is consistently on the same page with business goals, projects, and strategies is equally important. Potentially more crucial than communication, studies have found that 85% of employees attribute failures at work to a lack of good collaboration. Getting team members on the same page not only improves company-wide collaboration, but can also help everyone work smarter and not harder. Improving collaboration between teams means both embracing the communication tools and creating a culture of transparency. The more esecutive and teams can be transparent, especially when mistakes are made, the easier it is to collaborate on a solution before it’s too late.
To help get your whole team on the same page, it’s important that the entire company is first aligned on overall mission and goals. This simplifies the strategy for creating departmental, and even individual, goals for the year. Scheduling regularly occurring state-of-the-company meetings also ensures that leadership remains transparent with employees to keep all team members’ priorities on the same page. Transparency is crucial—one of our core values at FormAssembly is transparency, and we work diligently to stay accountable and share often.
3. Automate to boost productivity
Whether you’re focused on AI software or a new tech stack, automation is trending. It’s quickly becoming the norm for increasing productivity and driving business success, especially when 80% of organizations state they plan to continue expanding budgets for automation technology. Automating certain processes eliminates the need for employees to complete tedious tasks and the results are two-fold: increased time to focus on more meaningful work and decreased risk of stress and burnout.
Implementing automation software (such as our workflow builder and data collection platform) into business workflows has several significant benefits when it comes to productivity and efficiency. Any manual data entry tasks, from employee applications to marketing lead generation and customer surveys, can quickly be automated to reduce errors and save time. When a platform like this is used across an entire organization, you’ll get better insight into the data you’re collecting, allowing better collaboration between teams as well as increasing productivity for the company as a whole.
4. Be open to feedback
We all are aware of the personal consequences of not listening to feedback, whether positive or negative. The same goes for businesses as well. When 86% of buyers are happy to pay more if they have a great customer experience, it’s clear that any feedback, whether good or bad, should be taken seriously. Being open to feedback is the first step in helping it drive your business toward success. There are several best practices to follow when collecting and acting upon customer and employee feedback.
Always be prompt and courteous when replying to customer feedback. Not only will this help resolve any issues quickly, but it will help build brand credibility and trust that problems will be fixed, not ignored. Customer surveys are a great way to gather more insights and determine how and where to improve at your organization. Once you inform your customers how you plan to use their feedback, the information can be used to improve services, fix bugs, update help documents, and so on.
5. Establish a healthy culture
There’s no doubt that the pandemic has permanently shifted the way companies and employees view work culture, priorities, and work-life balance. While poor work environments and burnout are not new issues for organizations, they are now more than ever coming to the surface. Many organizations have had to recently pivot to meet evolving worker expectations. And indeed, nearly 70% of companies discovered that people-centric culture as well as remote work flexibility play large roles in attracting and retaining employees. In addition to work-life balance, mental health in the workplace has also been gaining attention in recent years. To find success as a business this year and beyond, all these new aspects of company culture must be considered.
Boosting employee satisfaction at an organization can be as straightforward as providing more flexibility to work from home, or can be holistic with a complete overhaul of company policies to improve communication, training, wellness, and work-life balance. A great start to understanding how your employees feel and what they need is by providing a feedback survey. For example, at FormAssembly, we encourage our team members to complete a confidential survey each year where they can freely express their thoughts about their team, job role, leadership, and the company as a whole. This transparency gives our Talent and Culture and executive teams the information they need to address issues and improve company benefits and programs.
6. Keep company data secure
Cyber threats have been an ongoing problem since the digital age, but in recent years, these threats have skyrocketed to a dangerous level. Cybercrime is reported to have risen by 300% since the pandemic began in early 2020. For any organization that uses customer data, providing a secure way to collect, manage, and store this data is crucial for ensuring the organization’s long-term success. By following cybersecurity best practices, your business can avoid serious security mistakes and maintain compliance with federal laws and regulations.
No matter where your business is in its growth, it’s important that you have cybersecurity policies, a risk management plan in case of a breach, and conduct routine awareness training and testing for employees. Another way to safeguard company, employee, and customer data is by using a secure data collection platform. For example, with strict adherence to security and compliance standards, FormAssembly simplifies your data stewardship practices and helps eliminate costly data silos by providing one centralized place to collect and manage data.
How FormAssembly can help
The power and versatility of FormAssembly’s data collection platform is ideal to leverage when setting goals and mapping out how to drive your business toward success in the new year. No matter the size of your organization or the industry, our all-in-one platform makes it easy to streamline processes, connect teams, and secure sensitive data across your entire organization—all without any extra lift from your IT department.
Our recent release of FormAssembly Workflow now makes it even easier to manage data processes, collaborate across departments, and improve overall productivity. Workflow enables your team to visually map out simple to complex business processes, seamlessly integrate web forms and other systems, harness the power of conditional logic and routing, and quickly distribute workflows across channels and teams for better, faster decision-making. This game-changing solution is now available for new Enterprise Cloud, Compliance Cloud, and Government Cloud plans—learn more at the link below.