As the UK continues its quest to crack the productivity puzzle, recent data from Be the Business, a government-backed productivity charity, indicates that while commitment to boosting productivity remains strong, business action remains at an impasse.

For example, in many instances, even the executive team is split over how to define productivity –– with Chief Financial Officers more likely to prioritise cost efficiencies, while Chief Marketing Officers lean towards promoting results tied to brand value.

While businesses typically implement more processes to drive productivity, greater innovation comes from using technology more effectively to create smarter ways of working. Leveraging tech to help teams work smarter will be crucial to boosting productivity but knowing where to start isn’t always straightforward. In this piece, I’ll share three tips to kickstart your productivity journey in 2024.

Avoiding tech for tech’s sake

As it stands, monday.com’s recent Global Productivity Report suggests that workers use up to 10.5 tech tools each month. However, tech for tech’s sake won’t yield results. Unsurprisingly, employees don’t feel supported by their current tech stack, with a majority believing they could save over 10 hours weekly by consolidating technology tools. What’s more, only 26% of workers fully agree that they have the tools in place to streamline work processes.

By working with IT leads on a robust tech audit, managers can gain a better understanding of the tools that allow their teams to collaborate more effectively. Rather than just focussing on platforms that solely aim to help teams work faster, rearranging workflows through strategically implemented tech tools will provide clearer structures around collaboration so that employers can carve out more business efficiencies.

Flexibility is key

As businesses navigate wider industry and economic challenges, flexibility is more important than ever. Having tech tools that enable teams to adapt and become more nimble is imperative to bolster cross-team collaboration.

Managers also need to be mindful of platforms that force teams to work in silos, as they can limit a team’s ability to grow and flex. Tools that empower employees to build better workflows and processes that suit their needs not only boost productivity but encourage greater individual accountability. Currently, over four in five knowledge workers (84%) believe that workflow automation can boost productivity and improve morale.

Low-code, no-code solutions offer a modular approach that allows teams to adopt a more creative approach to productivity. The ability to personalise tools enables specific work needs to be met across sales, work management, and software development.

Amplifying automation

AI and automation tools will be crucial to driving smarter processes. For example, automated data generation, e-mail composition, and document summaries all greatly increase efficiencies that free up more time for creative thinking. This in turn leads to more impactful innovation breakthroughs.

Traditional challenges around measuring productivity which have previously held managers back, can also be overcome through AI. For example, data can provide insights into the best way teams can set up and maintain the most optimal workflows while connecting the right people to the right processes.

By adopting these creative approaches to productivity that leverage tech to create smarter work processes, UK businesses can kickstart their productivity journey while creating a more empowered workforce.

Group Director EMEA at Monday.com

Will Hale is the Group Director EMEA at monday.com, a work operating system that allows organisations to build work management tools and software applications that fit their needs. Will joined the company as its first Leader for Europe three years ago and has been making waves ever since, playing an instrumental role in spearheading monday.com's pre- and post-IPO expansion from 2 to over 140 team members in the UK. Now, he leads the team seeking innovation and new business opportunities in the EMEA region.

Will is an industry specialist and a passionate thought leader on enterprise technology, the future of work, and business transformation. Before joining monday.com, he worked at organisations such as Salesforce and Cisco, having kicked off his career as a mine clearance diver in the Royal Navy.