Coming in at No.5 in our top 11 productivity killers is something we can all relate to – technology issues. It’s time to increase productivity by eliminating those pesky tech failures. So let’s get proactive and put an end to the whims of our machines taking up our precious time…
We’ve all been there. You’re on a roll and it’s getting close to a deadline when suddenly, your computer crashes. It’s so frustrating and it feels like it’s beyond our control. But fear not, my friend, TallyPro is here to boost your productivity through preventative measures that will certainly keep most of the failures at bay.
More and more, workers are completely reliant on technology and while most workplaces have some form of tech support, there’s a lot we can be doing as individuals before calling in the troubleshooting squad.
4 ways to prevent tech issues to increase productivity
We spoke to a team of technology support staff from York University to brainstorm some simple, yet effective ways to help managers and workers prevent tech issues. So, if you’ve turned it off, and turned it back on again and you’re still having issues listen up to these top tips.
1 Push yourself to become tech savvy
While technology may not be everybody’s strong suit, it’s a part of working life and there is an expectation when employees are hired that they can manage their work efficiently on a computer.
However, we’re not all experts, and we need systems to be reliable. Rachael, a district nurse who contributed to TallyPro’s top 11 productivity killers, said: “Mobile IT is not fit for purpose, as a regional nurse being able to access casework is essential and the IT systems are not equipped to cope. Far too many needless processes in place meaning simple tasks take far too long. This can waste up to two or three hours per day.”
While this may be true, these processes could be sped up by training employees how to efficiently use the tech, or even if the individuals took some time to take a closer look at the equipment they are using.
More often than not, problems with technology crop up due to the users doing something accidently – such as hitting the wrong button or unknowingly changing a setting – so it’s important that people make an effort to get to grips with the software used at their work places.
– Michael Hicks, tech support at York University
2 Don’t allow admin privileges
Admin privileges are basically what allow the user to install software, change settings and download things. These types of capabilities can lead to a myriad of issues if the employee is changing and downloading things that slow down the computer, or worse – introduce viruses!
“People can’t just download Skype or other software without admin permission, which means that things that could harm or slow down the devices aren’t being put onto work computers, or if they are, they’re being screened first,” said Michael.
This is something that should be considered by management, as an employee, its a proactive suggestion.
On the other hand, take it into your own hands and make sure you’re not downloading or streaming things that are not work related or that you’re unsure about. Individual employees can certainly control the healthiness of their own devices.
3 Keep equipment and software up-to-date
There’s only so much tech support can do for a computer on its last legs. You’ll spend more time waiting for something to be fixed than actual work. In addition, making sure any anti-virus software is updated can save you a world of trouble in the long run. It’s something that most of us never think about, but it has the power to keep productivity ticking over long-term.
Michael added: “Computers are regularly threatened by new viruses, so it’s important to maintain a firewall to combat any bugs breaking though. These can be a nightmare to deal with once they’ve already happened, but it’s so easy to click update!”
Programmes such as our time tracking software, need to be updated on a regular basis too. Programmes that we use every day can slow down significantly if they are not well maintained – so keep on top of it!
In a bigger company, these types of things could be forgotten about, so it is strongly encouraged that you regularly check that all software is up-to-date. In fact, you or a member of tech support can actually configure the programme to automatically check for updates – handy!
4 Respect the tech team
Technology issues can be frustrating – we all know that. But it’s not the support staff’s fault. Treat the technical team well, and they’ll be there for you in your moment of distress to get you back on track and working to your full productive potential.
“We’re often met with people that are annoyed at the situation, and it can get deflected onto us – which doesn’t help anything,” a member of the York University tech support staff said.
Michael added: “It’s important that businesses are adequately staffed with IT support staff if they want to keep productivity up. Because, in reality, technology fails, especially on computers that aren’t well-maintained.
“It also helps if tech support is in-house, so don’t outsource it if you don’t have to. It becomes a very slow and laborious process if it’s coming from outside the business,” he continued.
You were hired to do your job, and tech support is hired to do theirs, and together you can create an environment to increase productivity. So let’s get back to work, shall we!