You know your kids are going to roll their eyes when you ask them to show you their homework in order that you can sign off on it.
You’ll get the same kind of reaction when you announce to your employees that it’s time to do a time study. When you share with them that you, too, will be entering into this process, it will help allay their push-back.
But why do it?
Look at it this way, a time study (or shall we say the results of the time study with you and your staff) can help you enormously to understand how your firm is running, for real. It also provides an enormous tool to learn what functions can be better performed and whether or not your players are in the correct positions. It will also be very telling about which tasks you are doing that you should NOT be doing. As the firm owner, your hour is worth FAR more than anyone else in your firm. The results of this will reveal whether those tasks you are holding on to may be better performed by someone else.
So how is this rolled out?
Well, it’s not brain surgery. But having a process in place to ensure it is done correctly is vital. Depending on the size of your firm, it’s important to gather all of the staff leadership together. If that is you and your admin, so be it. If it is you and your middle management, it doesn’t really matter, but gaining buy-in from the leaders is helpful.
At this point, you want to make it clear this is no ploy to “catch” anyone doing what they shouldn’t be doing nor is it a tactic to call anyone out. The time study is a magnifying glass that allows the entire organization to know what each staff person does and also where the gaps are.
The length of time you choose to capture is up to you, but to be truly useful, a time study should span the time of at least one month to capture all tasks—those done daily, weekly and monthly. When you have the results in, spend some time analyzing the results to determine the reasons behind the data and how they may be better and more efficiently executed.