After talking to thousands of reception staff over many years I believe I have more than enough information to compile a top 6 list of time saving tools for reception staff that will not only remove stress for your every day routine but will also save you time. Every one of these top 6 time saving tools will save you time in your role today.
I have listened to reception staff explain the issues they have where they may need something but have no budget or are simply afraid to raise an idea for fear of failure. Every one of these top six time saving tools will make your boss happy!!
From managing data in excel spreadsheets to booking meetings, managing visitors, scheduling employees it is all here.
Lets get started with number 6 but make sure you check out number 1 as number 1 has made my staff happier and saved several hours every day. Combine 2 or more of these tools and your day will improve like you could not have imagined. Have a great 2016.
6. Have you ever had your computer die on you losing all of your favorite bookmarks that you had built up over several years to make your day easier when looking for things….I don’t know a person that this has not happened to. How long did you spend rebuilding your list and what did you lose?
Xmarks will save you many hours on that day when your computer dies, this tool is not only great for the office, it is also great for home and best of all the tool is free. Xmarks will allow you to save your bookmarks so you can call on them later, you can even set up a profile for home and a profile for the office. If you are working from home one day you can simply log into the office profile and on your home computer you will find all of your office bookmarks saving you considerable time.
5. Do you work on spreadsheets, do you need to move to another office to show the results of your work? Have you ever had to send a spreadsheet to a colleague then wait for the spreadsheet to come back with changes….this tool will save you and your colleagues hours every day.
I am a self confessed google spreadsheets user, not only for the office but I also use Google Spreadsheets to help me manage the local football team that I coach. The power of Google Spreadsheets in not in the spreadsheet itself but in the functionality that comes with the spreadsheet. I can share a spreadsheet with a colleague online and live. At the same time we can both be logged into the spreadsheet looking at the information live, if I make a change my colleague can see the change instantly, no more emailing spreadsheets waiting for them to be returned.
4. Are you involved with the organisation of employees, do you have to organize employees to be at work at certain times? If you are involved in scheduling your employees to be at work and you use spreadsheets or a notepad? this tool will get you a promotion….
Deputy scheduling software
If you are the person spending hours every day organizing employees to be at work at certain times and you use a spreadsheet and your telephone to do all of the organizing then this tool is for you. Build your schedule, push a button the schedule goes automatically out to all of the employees. Employees can advise availability, swap shifts if you give permission and much more. This tool will save you several hours every day and remove a huge amount of stress. No more making 20 phone calls to find a few people to fill a shift.
3. When I talk to people who are on the phone a lot all day one thing stands out, reception staff who use headsets are less stressed than reception staff who do not wear headsets. This is one of those things that once you try it you cannot go back, a bit like once you go to 2 screens on your computer you never want to go back to one screen.
You can fins headsets from hundreds of suppliers online, just google headsets and you will fins many options ranging from 30 dollars for USB headsets to many hundreds of dollars for wireless headsets.
Headsets instantly remove telephone stress, no matter which way you try and hold a telephone as soon as you put on a headset you instantly feel less stress. This is a tool that will help you every minute of the day, the more you use the telephone the more you have to gain from moving to a headset. A wireless headset is the ultimate as this allows you to continue the conversation but you can get out of your chair increasing your bloodflow and removing further tension from sitting for long periods.
2. There are so many ways a receptionist can lose time during the day, visitors and contractors in a busy reception area can chew up all the available time a receptionist has available.
Visitor Management Software
Visitor Management software will have an instant impact on your time with visitors who are able to self register their presence on site by signing in at a self serve touch screen kiosk. The Visitor Management software will then send an email or SMS to the host automatically saving you a large amount of time every day where you are chasing down the host for the visitor. Visitor Management software does so much more than just sign in visitors for you, you can also manage keys and cards through the asset module, fire wardens can manage evacuation drills with the evacuation module, facility managers can manage contractors through the contractor module and much more.
1. My number 1 has taken more stress out of the reception staff and saved more time than any other tool we have ever introduced to the business. Every one of the above tools removed an amount of stress, my staff say this one tool has not only taken away stress but has also saved several hours every day.
ScheduleOnce allows you to build a calendar of available time for your boss. The calendar will sync with your bosses existing calendar so if he adds a 2 hour block of time to go watch the kids at school in a performance to his calendar this time is automatically removed from the calendar system.
The biggest time saver here is the time spent going back and forwards trying to book in a time with customers, suppliers etc. The software will manage this process for you including completing auto confirmations of the meeting.
If you wanted to give your boss the best tool of the year and you are currently managing meetings and appointments manually then this is the tool for you.
If you can combine 2 or more of these tools in your office you will remove an enormous amount of day to day stress, have a great 2016.