What if there were easy solutions to make your work day lighter or more balanced? Chances are, there are streamlined processes to help you do that! Here are a few tips to streamline a business process or task in front of you.
1. Identify the end goal.
Begin by identifying your goal. Interns and audit associates have many tasks to tackle throughout the week, so it helps to pick one goal to focus on at the start of your day.
For example, if your goal includes fleshing out internal control testing procedures, and you notice there may be a more organized approach, don’t panic. Instead, take it one step at a time. Break apart the task into smaller bite-sized tasks. First things first. Try creating a template for the steps included in a subset of procedures.
Tip: Your goal should be manageable on your own, but don’t hesitate to ask your team for help, especially if a team member is specialized in a certain area you are struggling with.
2. Practice good recordkeeping.
Document all the steps you currently take to meet your goal. Identify what steps are necessary, which steps are repetitive and which ones have gaps. Now that you know exactly what you need to do, and in which order, you can begin the rest of the work with confidence. This leads to a streamlined process for the rest of your tasks.
Make sure to use a revision number and include dates where possible to help you keep a record of improvements made over time.
Automate the process using technology that you currently use in the workplace. If you know other technology is needed, communicate this with your team. Chances are, your budget will have room for a software subscription that benefits everyone equally.
Work smarter, not harder!
4. Monitor and report back.
Show concrete results for how your new, streamlined process improved efficiency and maintained–or improved–accuracy.
Creating folders on your shared drive, labeled by year or revision version, will help segregate data and provide a clear path to others using your internal controls template (for example) after you.
Send your manager a quarterly report to highlight changes made to the process, including revised steps and hours saved to ensure everyone is on the same page.
Conclusion: As an intern or associate just starting out, you have your work cut out for you. Busy days can lead to fatigue, or even burnout, if you don’t set aside a period of rest in between periods of focus. Don’t rush through your work and don’t cut corners, as this can lead to errors in the data. A streamlined process will help you approach your tasks in a swift and efficient manner.
Then you can focus on your next task with a level head. This will also decrease the amount of stress you feel, if any, in the workplace.
Do you see yourself working at LvHJ? Apply for a position, today, through our Careers site.