What Is Work Distribution And Why Is It Important?

work distribution

For your team to function efficiently, complete projects on time, and produce the highest-quality work possible, it’s essential that you take work distribution into account when assigning tasks.

Overloading one person or group — even if they can handle it — is detrimental to the overall success of the team.

Similarly, underloading another person or group does them a disservice by not pushing them to improve their skills.

So, how can you ensure the equitable division of work for your team?

In this article, we answer that question and introduce you to a tool that will improve the way you, your team, and our business operates.

What Is Work Distribution?

woman explaining work distribution

Work distribution is the theory and practice of dividing tasks among a team in order to maximize the skills and experience of each individual.

Essentially, it enables managers to match what needs to be done to the employee best suited to complete the work at a high level.

Additionally, effective work distribution makes it easier for employees to maintain their performance and productivity so they can deliver quality work and complete tasks faster.

These two benefits highlight the importance of dividing work equitably within your business. But, they’re only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the true importance of a good work distribution strategy.

Why Is Work Distribution Important?

Woman explaining Why Is Work Distribution Important

1) Minimizes Risk

With any task or project, there’s always a risk that the work won’t be done to your business’s high standards or won’t be completed on time to the client’s satisfaction.

Dividing the work into small pieces and assigning a manageable part to each member of the team minimizes the risk that things won’t go well.

2) Increases Productivity

Overloading any one person or group significantly reduces that person’s or group’s productivity. Under such heavy requirements, team members are more likely to only be productive for an hour or two a day.

But, with the right system for dividing the workload, you can increase the productivity of everyone on your team. This ensures that every employee is making the most progress on the task at hand while their productivity levels are high.

3) Reduces Stress

Assigning too much work too often — to an individual or your whole team — leads to high stress. Prolonged stress leads to lack of engagement, exhaustion, and, eventually, burnout.

Allowing the stress to progress to the level that breeds burnout is extremely detrimental to your entire business and can be difficult to recover from.

Effective work distribution prevents all the tasks, jobs, and projects from overwhelming your employees and your team.

4) Makes The Most Of Availability

Work distribution in progress

Working one team member to the bone while others sit around doing busy work is not a good way to manage a project.

Equitable work distribution makes the most of everyone’s availability so that each member of your team is contributing in some valuable way to the success of the project.

5) Allows You To Prioritize Projects

Each project has its own unique set of deadlines. Those deadlines mean that you’ll have to prioritize some tasks over others in order to complete the project on time.

A good work distribution strategy allows you to customize what gets done when — even shuffling things around mid-project — without falling behind on any other aspect of the project.

That helps everyone stay on track and improves your team’s chances of success.

6) Keeps The Work Moving Forward

Some tasks within a project are more involved than others and take longer to complete.

But, for the project to be successful, you need the work to keep moving forward so progress doesn’t stall while you wait for other employees to finish.

Good work distribution is the key to this forward movement. It allows you to assign more work when an employee finishes a task so the majority of the team isn’t waiting to move on because a few individuals have a more complicated component to complete.

How To Optimize Work Distribution For Your Tea

Team learning how to How To Optimize Work Distribution

1) Have A Plan

Like employee scheduling, work distribution is better done with a plan in mind rather than just executed at random.

First, create a list of projects and processes that you’re going to assign to your team.
Determine the timing and scope of those projects and processes. Reduce everything to manageable components, and then prioritize the work based on importance and deadlines.

From there, you can see which employees are available for more work and who would be best suited for a particular task.

2) Clarify Roles

Once you have a plan for your work distribution, take some time to clarify roles and establish any hierarchies of responsibility that may be different from your regular operating procedure.

Make sure that everyone knows who they’re reporting to, who’s doing what, and where to go if they have any questions.

3) Set Expectations

Employees working on a laptop

A key variable in every task assignment is the expectations that govern what gets done.

Make a list of objectives that must be met as well as the level of effort and engagement you expect your team members to exhibit while working on their tasks.

When they have all the details they need, they’ll be better able to focus on the job rather than worrying about whether or not one part of their assignment is up to your high standards.

4) Streamline Team Workflow

Another way to optimize work distribution for your team is to streamline their workflow whenever possible.

To do this, you have to first identify any points of friction that may prevent employees from handling the workload you assign them.

Once you’ve identified those points of friction, find ways to reduce their impact — or eliminate them altogether — so that your team can handle more work in a timely manner.

Not sure how to do this? Here are some suggestions to get you started:

  • Talk to your team before assigning work
  • Take into account one task’s dependency on another task
  • List tasks in order of importance and assign accordingly
  • Balance start dates and due dates for each task and project
  • Shift responsibilities based on workload

As you examine each team member’s workflow and capacity, avoid the pitfall of overestimating what your employees can do in the time they have.

It’s always better to err on the side of caution — creating more tasks than you think you need or building extra time into the deadlines — so you don’t overwhelm your team or create a traffic jam within the workflow.

5) Communicate With Your Team

After you assign tasks to individuals and groups, communicate with your team as much as possible to make sure they can handle what you’ve given them.

This is best done individually and as a group because you’ll get different information from each setting.

Ask such questions as:

  • Do you feel like you have too much work?
  • Do you feel like you don’t have enough work?
  • Do you feel like you have just the right amount of work?
  • How often do you feel productive throughout your workday?
  • How can I help you be more productive?
  • What part of your workload would you get rid of if you could?

With answers to these questions, you’ll be better equipped to change the work distribution to better fit the abilities of your employees.

The Right App For The Job

The right app for work distribution

Whether you’re managing an in-house team, a field-service team, a distributed team, or a hybrid of all three, modern apps make work distribution easier than ever.

What is the right app for the job? Inch.

With our powerful suite of tools, remote and on-site team members can perform a wide variety of tasks from any smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop, including:

  • Clocking in and out of their workday
  • Recording time-on-task wherever they are
  • Communicating with managers and each other
  • Working from a shared task list
  • Getting clarity on work that needs to get done
  • Receiving voice-assisted reminder notifications
  • Completing work assigned to them

When it comes to creating a channel for effective work distribution, there’s no better suite of tools than Inch.

Take your employee management and optimization to the next level by downloading the Inch suite of tools for free today.

For more free resources to help you manage your business better, save time and energy, and keep your team on task, visit TryInch.com today.

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