Experts have long said that stress is very dangerous and can reduce individual’s life expectancy. Organizations and local governments are, ultimately, collections of individuals, and their efficiency can thus be hampered by stress. Unfortunately, local government workers are increasingly stressed due to inefficient procedures which lead to an increased workload and slow work.
A study from British Columbia which polled local government workers revealed that nearly half of employees thought their workload and work stress was unmanageable. This is not an outlier as other studies also speak to this; this stress can have a serious impact on productivity. In fact, a statistics Canada report details the productivity loss due to stress, these losses include absenteeism, reduced output, disability claims and more. The overall losses for all organizations range in the billions.
Stress can be due to inefficient procedures which mean that employees:
- Have to travel to an offsite storage place to search for and retrieve documents. This can be a very time-consuming process and significantly drain employee morale. Most people don’t like searching for papers in a dark basement room.
- Have to deal with citizens unhappy about the time it takes to respond to requests. This is bad for both employees and constituents.
- Are unable to work remotely through their home computer or mobile device. This may mean that employees have to drive to the office just to do simple tasks – this is expensive in terms of time and gas. There is also the risk of motor vehicle accidents whenever they drive.
- Run around the office collecting signatures, sometimes from people in other departments. This process is not only time-consuming but also inefficient as not everyone is in at the office at the same time. In some cases signatures may be forgotten about altogether, rendering the process not only inefficient but also ineffective.
- Manually enter in data from incomplete and/or damaged paper documents. This data-entry process can be extremely tedious and difficult when the documents are illegible. In addition, data is often used once for a procedure and then discarded. Thus, if certain data is requested multiple times employees have to begin the entry procedure from scratch. If different employees have differing interpretations of what it said in the document (e.g. one word may seem to say “text” to one person and “test” to another) this can cause confusion and possibly have serious legal ramifications.
Employee stress related to document and information management is a real issue and needs to be taken seriously. However, it can be difficult to handle, but Ricoh can help.
- Digitize your paper records and store them in a secure electronic repository that can be on premises or hosted in the cloud so that search and retrieval can be done in seconds. This means that employees can spend their valuable time on more important things and serve the public better.
- Create automated business process through which complex tasks such as those involving invoices, travel expenses, building permits, and more can be done quicker. We know that every city, town, village and municipality is different and will create a custom solution for your government.
- Create a constituent-focused notification-based system for Freedom of Information requests through which citizens can request information online and are notified at every step of the process. This system will not only help your employees but constituents as well, and will create a better public image of your government.
- Integrate our solutions with current software and hardware to ensure an easy transition process. We also provide extensive support for our tooling.
- Set up a secure system through which workers can access vital data and print information through their own mobile devices. With the threat of data leaks and cyber-attacks, cyber security is more important than ever and we have an extremely secure system so that your IT department doesn’t have to worry.
By employing Ricoh’s award-winning solutions, governments can reduce their employees’ stress, leading to a happier and more productive work environment. Visit our website for more information.