We recently observed an unusual routine: every week, and sometimes more than once a week, “Julie” would take documents and reports that her billing system generated, and manually modify the layout and location of information within the report, as well as adding some customer data that was not automatically showing.
On average, these changes would take 20 minutes each.
When asked why, she simply answered that the format used by the billing system was not suitable for her needs and that this was what she and her customers needed to see.
The suggestion was then made, that perhaps the template settings that dictate the layout and content of the reports could be modified. After a call to the software company that developed the billing system, a new template was created and the reports were just a click away.
Being industrious, entrepreneurial, and a problem solver has great value, but a temporary work-around can quickly become a routine problem. 20 minutes, twice a week is almost a full week of work hours each year spent on something that should take 10 seconds.
Got any repetitive tasks that you have not re-thought in a while?