5 Steps to Master Your Office Management

Hello all! Camille Simmons your friendly Office Administrator with Red Shark Digital here, fresh from maternity leave! As office administrator for this lovely group of people, I have almost taken on the role of office mom as well. From my previous experience as an Administrative Support Specialist and in my current position, I have compiled 5 easy steps to office management that anyone can implement in their business to keep things running as smoothly as possible. As we all know, disorganization and confusion are horrible for business!

Get into a Routine and Stay There!

This is probably the most important part of keeping things running smoothly. There should be a uniform routine procedure for everything that happens in your office. For example, each piece of paper that comes into your office should first be assessed. It’s wishful thinking to think you will be able to handle every little thing that comes in at the moment it comes to your hands, but sitting it in a pile on your desk to be handled later will leave many things to fall through the cracks. Next items should be acted upon and put in an appropriate place if action is not completed. Once an action is completed the item must be appropriately filed.

It is equally important to follow this same routine with digital communication like emails. Emails should be prioritized and acted upon immediately if possible. If not, they should be flagged for future action.

Set up as many processes as possible for your office, especially for things that occur regularly. This will save you time in the long run and help you bypass a lot of confusion.

Who’s Job is That, Anyway?

It’s of the utmost importance that everyone knows whose job it is to do what. This not only keeps things running efficiently, employees will know who to go to when they need something in particular, and it is easier for management to hold employees accountable.

Put one person in charge of things that happen routinely so you never have to wonder if action was taken or not. For example, in our office, we order groceries every week from Walmart. I am in charge of getting anything we have run out of during the week and everyone in our office knows if they have a request to put it in with me before Tuesday mornings.

Using cloud-based systems for office applications, accounting software, and data storage is the best way to ensure everyone stays in the loop in a small business. We here at Red Shark use Monday.com, an application that manages all our creative projects, production schedules, web maintenance, monthly accounts, and more. In Monday, users can assign tasks and view what step we are on in all of our projects. This means that no matter who a client talks to, any employee should be able to pull up their account and relay exactly what step we are on in the process. Users can also comment and add updates that all users can see. We also have a team drive on Google Docs, allowing for us to easily share documents and edit other’s work.

Keep a Print and Digital Copy of Everything

Sounds like common sense right? While all offices more than likely keep records, it is important that those records be easily accessible for all and must always be updated. Going hand in hand with Step 1, it is of the utmost importance that a process is in place for updating records.

For example; once we acquire a new client, a client folder is created for where every transaction with that customer, whether it be meeting notes, requests or invoices, is filed. From there the client is entered into Quickbooks, our financial tracking system, including their contact information. It only takes a moment to enter a client into Quickbooks or create a client folder, but in the long run the easy access and ease of updating the file if necessary will be well worth it.

Make a Plan and Stick to it!

While running a business there are always going to be tasks that nobody wants to do. Each employee will be faced with this struggle daily even if they love their job as much as we do here at RSD. Unfortunately, just like in your home, an office won’t function well without taking care of chores.

There are also tasks that will arise in the day to day of operating a business that will take more time than others. Falling behind on those tasks will create a heavier workload on everybody and in the long run cause unnecessary stress in your office. The best way to alleviate this problem is to schedule set days/times in the day to work on those sort of tasks. Utilizing tools such as calendar alerts, alarms, and notes to self will help with that tremendously, but once you make a plan you must stick to it for it be beneficial!

In our office, the most difficult task to keep up with is creating blog content for our clients that receive our Search Engine Optimization (SEO) services. With the high pace that our office operates at it is just difficult for our employees to find time to sit down, research, and write the kick-ass blogs that appear not only on our website but our client’s websites as well. To combat this issue our Digital Campaign Manager, Travis, came up with a great system using Monday.com to keep us on track and disperse the blog writing evenly!

Make Your Space Work Best for You

If you’re at your desk in your office currently, take a moment to look around your office. Are you optimizing the use of your space for maximum productivity? Can you actually work comfortably at your desk or is there so much clutter your brain hurts to look at it? Are the necessary tools for you to be successful handy? When you walk through your office, are you having to maneuver around objects? Is there too much light or not enough? What about music to keep the atmosphere good for productivity? These are all things to consider when determining whether or not your space really works best for you.

For maximum productivity, it is important to have the necessary office supplies at the ready. Things like tape, staplers, hole punchers, pens, and highlighters, etc. should be within arm’s reach of each employee. The objects on every employee’s desk should logically be arranged. For instance, you wouldn't put a document that you are currently in the process of working on in the same area of your desk as documents that are completed and need to be filed.

Keeping a great work atmosphere will help immensely with productivity. At RSD our employee workstations are grouped by department making it easy for everyone to work together, which is a key aspect of our business running smoothly. We frequently listen to music in the office and everyone gets a chance to tell Alexa what they want to hear. Be on the lookout for our RSD public playlist that will give you more insight into our culture here in the office. All of these things increase morale and keep everyone dedicated. Nobody works more efficiently or productively than an employee that loves the environment they are working in.

It's also important to keep tissues and hand sanitizer in convenient places. If your employees are as dedicated as ours, they will come to work with the sniffles and continuously having to locate a tissue box or run to the bathroom will cut down on productivity. Keeping disinfecting spray and disinfecting wipes handy will help keep the spread of germs down, especially during this vicious flu season.

There are so many more ways that I could list to keep your office running smoothly but I’ll stop at these basic five. I can guarantee implementing these simple steps will yield great results in not only your business’ productivity but also in the happiness and dedication of your employees. If you try out any of these steps and want to share your results, we’d love to hear them! Contact Red Shark Digital or shoot us an email and we’d love to chat with you!