The success of a business depends on the smooth functioning of all its departments. This means ensuring every division giving their best efforts with the tasks concerned. A crucial factor in achieving this, among many others, is proper workload management.
Workload Management is the process of distributing tasks to the team members and checking one’s utilization over time. The objective here is to delegate tasks to meet deadlines without overburdening the employees. This is important to avoid employee burnout and inefficiency.
Having a proper workload management plan clarifies tasks, facilitates better planning and time management. These are the crucial aspects of getting things done well and on time. It is for these reasons why leaders must be able to practice this task allocation well within a group.
While designing a workload plan, there are many things that you must keep in mind to avoid failure. Most of these plans suffer because of improper work allocation, unrealistic time frames, underperformance, etc. To ensure that you don’t fall prey to these, here is how you must proceed.
How To Practice Effective Workload Management For Your Team
1. Current Workload and Capacity
In a hectic work environment, it is tough to track everyone’s work accurately. Because of this, managers don’t get a fair idea of the already existing workload. Therefore, you must ascertain the current assignments of your staff first.
In determining the current workload of your team, the following steps would serve you well.
- First, make a list of all existing projects and the ones on the pipeline for all divisions.
- After this, ascertain the nature of these projects individually. Are they big, small, complex, have multiple delivery points, etc.? In this step, you must also cite the different teams working on these projects, respectively.
- Once you understand which teams are working on what projects, you’ll have a better knowledge of the existing workload. Now, break down the work of different projects into smaller chunks, preferably work done per week.
- The last step is breaking down the different projects to their respective priorities. Note down what needs completion immediately.
Following this method will give you an idea of how much work every team is regularly doing.
2. Allocating Resources and Tasks
Now that you have a fair idea of the workload let’s go ahead with assigning tasks. It is important to note here that you must delegate tasks to those who can handle it best. Improper work allocation here can lead to disastrous results and time spent in vain.
Therefore, your decision must be based on experience, results, and field of expertise when choosing the right individual for a job. In this step, there are also a few other things to keep in mind as well. Some of these are
- When dishing out tasks, always start with the highest priority work first. Since these are required to be over soon, you should tackle them first.
- After assigning work, one should determine an appropriate time-frame for the job. Here, “appropriate” doesn’t mean fast but rather the time required to get it done perfectly. Maintain a calendar here so that it is easy to follow up and check the results.
- Make sure you’re assigning the right person with the correct skillset.
- In this process of assigning duties, include the team as well to know if there are any additional issues for the work. It will give them a chance to put forward their views and feel valued.
- Always make it a point to let whomever you choose for a job to understand why you chose him/her. Here, any positive reinforcement will boost their employee motivation levels.
3. Follow-up for changes
After the tasks are assigned, follow up on the progress of your team members. It is because even the best-laid plans don’t always work. Therefore, you must ascertain if everything is going according to plan or not.
Suppose everything is going fine, then well done to you for a job well done! If things don’t work out the same, you should get together with the team to work out the kinks and reassign tasks.
4. Improving Team Efficiency
Team efficiency is always a significant factor in meeting due dates and cutting costs. In most cases, there is often someone who gets some things done quicker than others. Here, apart from a gesture of employee appreciation, you should try to understand their tactic as well.
It may be a new software they are using, an original/new method, etc. If a task can be over fast, the whole team needs to know the procedure as well. Other than this, you can also follow other examples to improve efficiency as well. Some of these are
- Cutting out unnecessary meetings
- Proper employee training and development on project management skills
- Leverage on individual employee strengths
5. Workload Management Tool
A workload management tool is a software that can distribute and monitor the work across multiple teams and individuals based on their ability, skill, and availability. This management software is an enormous help as they simplify the process and make it easy to follow up.
It helps with task management, reporting, project management, time tracking, collaboration, client management, etc.
These are the steps to create your best workload management plan for the future.
Improper workload is a problem faced by employees all over the world. It doesn’t only harm your work staff’s job satisfaction but also employee health. Other than these, it depletes the ever-important employee engagement levels as well.
But, with proper planning, you can avoid all these negative impacts. As of today, creating a workload management plan should get you started just fine.