Cut All Your Venue Admin Tasks Down to Size
Data entry, filing, fact-checking; this is the necessary but mundane work that is required to keep the gears turning at your venue. But, there are steps you can take to minimize time spent on these venue admin tasks so you and your staff are free to concentrate on activities that have a more direct impact on the bottom line.
Here’s a look at some of the strategies real venues are using to manage admin tasks and my recommendation for the only one that’s worth a darn if you want to get serious about increasing efficiency and cutting administrative work down to size.
The Hard Way: Pens, Paper & File Cabinets
It’s hard to believe but there are still many, many venues out there using some combination of desk calendars, massive whiteboards and file folders full of hard copies as their primary means of organization. Don’t get me wrong, this way can work for venues of a certain size but it requires a lot more blood, sweat and tears to get it right. Even then, it carries a large risk of failure – and, really, how could it not? If you have to come to the physical location of a filing room or paper calendar, etc., every time you need something AND carry out a manual search for the information in question, it’s just an accident waiting to happen.
The situation is no better if and when you need to make a change or update customer orders and info. In this case, an actual eraser and/or a series of emails or phone calls is needed to pass along the new info to anyone else down the line that needs to know. Minus the eraser and the need to physically get up to locate information, the use of one or more spreadsheets for this purpose is almost equally limiting.
The Smart Way: Separate Software Programs & Digital Storage
In that you’ll spend less time just trying to locate information and will cut down on the likelihood that something will be lost or misplaced, separate software programs to help you manage day-to-day operations (scheduling, CRM, etc.) are better than the perfect storm described above—but only slightly.
One of the major limitations of the paper, pens and file cabinets system still applies: managing changes and updates remains cumbersome. Disconnected systems not only typically require duplicate data entry, they also still make it necessary to play tag or telephone to flag changes. That’s time and effort that is still tied up in the kind of work that is of less real value to your organization.
The Smartest Way: Integrated Software
So, what’s this magic bullet I’ve been teasing? Reducing the amount of time spent on administrative work and the rate of errors is one of the strongest selling points of integrated software – and it’s very simple: If everyone is working from one system, using one central database, information like client contact info, billing and order history, contracts, etc. only ever has to be entered once vs. multiple times in separate systems.
The same goes for changes. Enter a change once, it’s updated system-wide, in real-time and everyone who needs to know about it receives an instant notification. Our clients report an average of 3-6 hours per week, per user of saved time on venue admin tasks. Time that is then available to spend on services and activities that tie in directly with revenue generation.
As far as reducing errors goes, the benefit of an integrated technology solution can best be explained by the 1:10:100 rule. Research has shown that it costs approximately $1 to verify the accuracy of data at the point of entry, $10 to correct or clean up mistakes in batch form and $100 (or more) per inaccuracy if the mistake is never caught. That last figure includes the costs associated with something like low customer satisfaction and retention that can be hard to quantify but has an indisputable impact on your bottom line.
Human error is inevitable, there’s no way around it. The difference is in whether or not your processes are set up to maximize or minimize those errors. If your event information has to be entered multiple times in separate systems, you’re setting yourself up for expensive mistakes in the long-term. Enter it only once in a single system and you cut that risk immeasurably.
Beyond Basic Venue Admin Tasks
Given our position in the market, we’ve got a unique perspective that allows us access to best practices from thousands of clients across the globe. If you’re wondering if the insight stretches beyond the subject at hand, you’re on the right track!? You can find strategies and tips for a variety of common challenges in our latest Ebook. Download your free copy today!