If there’s one thing that unites pretty much everyone at Novacroft it’s helping clients get more for less. From business analysts to software developers, every team is obsessed with doing things that reduce clients’ costs and improve their performance. It has to be said though that Finance used to stand on the sidelines, feeling a bit left out. But not now!
It all started when we learned that our new offices at Lakeside House were to be sleek, uncluttered and open plan. Walls of filing cabinets had to go. As the team responsible for the greatest volume of paperwork, the three of us in Finance decided to take the lead and transform the way we work. We aimed to become a paperless office.
None of us had done anything like this before but we were convinced there could be big benefits – and not just seeing the back of unsightly cabinets. We’d discovered, for instance, that office workers use 45 pieces of paper a day, over half of which end up in the bin. That 7.5% of paper documents are lost and 3.5% mis-filed. And that SMEs waste a total of more than £42m a day searching for documents.
With statistics like these spurring us on we set about working through our files, saving what was vital electronically and storing documents on Google Drive. The first big win came with Purchase Ledger. Instead of taking paper invoices round the office to be signed off we now simply email the relevant person and they can access and annotate their invoices online.
The second sign of the significance of what we were doing came in the summer, when our part-time colleague decided to move to a job closer to home. With our new way of working I was able to take on her responsibilities pretty easily. So to add to the savings we were already making on postage, paper and printing, we now also very clearly saw the financial implications of our improved productivity.
That was the lightbulb moment, the moment we ‘got’ what Get More For Less really means. Because it wasn’t just about costs. Everything had become better, easier. We can find documents at the touch of a button rather than trawling through files. Our CEO can access the documents she needs no matter where she is. And when we moved into Lakeside House and sat at our vast clutter-free desks with just one small filing cabinet at our side, we realised we’d adopted another Novacroft maxim too: simplification is the height of sophistication!