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10 Productivity Management Techniques to Boost Performance

Find out how productivity optimization addresses efficiency for individuals & organizations so they can manage time, tasks & resources to achieve success.


By ActivTrak

Steps going up with arrows moving from one to the other towards a bullseye to signify the benefits of productivity management techniques.

Do you suspect your employees are overwhelmed by workloads? Are you constantly looking for ways to improve output? Are you trying to help your team focus so they can hit deadlines and avoid burnout? Find out how productivity optimization addresses efficiency for individuals and organizations alike, empowering you to effectively manage time, tasks and resources to achieve optimal results.

What is productivity management?

Productivity management is the systematic planning, organizing and controlling of activities to enhance output. More simply: Productivity management is how you schedule your work day and remove distractions to complete tasks with the best process for the highest possible quality.

To work both harder and smarter, managers and individual contributors must be intentional, consistent and flexible. Using productivity management includes analyzing how tasks are performed, finding areas for improvement and putting strategies in place to optimize performance. 

Why is productivity management important?

There are many benefits of productivity management, like increasing engagement, preventing burnout, reducing unnecessary expenses and improving customer relationships. It’s also crucial for maintaining a competitive edge. Businesses that prioritize productivity are better equipped to adapt to changes, seize opportunities and stay ahead of the competition. 

Time is money, and effectively managing time is the key to success across an organization. Productivity management ensures employees spend their time on what’s important. According to Asana, 60% of employees in a recent survey said they spend most of their time on meetings, duplicated work and even talking about work. 

This isn’t just a waste of time and resources for the company; it’s also a precursor to burnout as employees become frustrated and disengaged. An employee’s ability to complete work is directly correlated to engagement. And according to Gallup,engaged employees are 23% more profitable for the company – further proof increased productivity, engagement and profitability all go hand in hand.

10 productivity management techniques to boost performance

Every organization has different goals, workplace cultures and needs, but several techniques boost performance across industries and organizations.

1. Implement productivity management software

The first step in managing productivity is measuring it. Leadership and managers need to know about historical performance to set benchmarks. Individuals also need data on their performance to track how they’re doing and understand expectations. Understanding how top performers function within your organization gives you insight into better procedures and policies for everyone. The right productivity management software will also show you bottlenecks or where technology is more distracting than helpful. 

ActivTrak’s productivity management software provides historical data and actionable insights on performance across individuals, teams and entire departments. A full story of tailored productivity metrics empowers you to make data-driven decisions. It equips managers to create productivity goals for customized coaching and provides team members with  a fuller picture of what’s holding them back. At the same time, organizations use it to devise better procedures and tools so employees are as productive as possible. 

2. Encourage breaks

Rest and downtime are major contributors to creativity and productivity. Human beings aren’t machines and perform better when they can take a step away from work — especially from screens. As the University of North Carolina reported, the kind of break an employee takes is just as important as the break itself. 

Incentivize employees and managers to step away from their computers and phones throughout the day to take adequate time to recharge. Implement policies on responding to messages after hours if necessary and encourage team members to use time management strategies, such as setting a timer for 25 minutes to remind themselves to take a break. This will protect energy levels throughout the day and equip them to be more productive overall. 

3. Discourage multitasking

Employees who multitask may think they’re getting more work accomplished. But contrary to popular belief, the brain isn’t capable of true multitasking.  Instead, when we think we’re multitasking, we’re actually switching our attention from one task to another, which means we never fully focus on the task at hand. This leads to decreased productivity – sometimes by as much as 40%. Employees who multitask are also more likely to make mistakes, perform poorly and have worse relationships at work and in their personal lives. They’re also more prone to burnout. 

To discourage multitasking, it’s important to set realistic goals and deadlines, prioritize projects on their true importance and adjust workflows based on employee needs. Leaders should also encourage “brain training,” or learning to recognize which types of multitasking are appropriate and not harmful, such as listening to music while completing a menial task. 

4. Break down projects into subtasks

Big projects can be overwhelming, but when you organize tasks into subtasks, you more effectively manage the amount of time it takes to complete them. Project management software is a great way for teams to determine what tasks make up a large project. Other benefits of project management software include the ability to group similar tasks and prioritize important tasks, clarifying what needs to be done at a specific time and what can wait. This helps improve your time management within the organization, allowing teams to reorganize tasks if an urgent need comes up. 

5. Automate repetitive tasks

One of the most common ways employees waste time and lose productivity is through repetitive tasks. These tasks not only cause burnout through boredom but are often better done through automation. Depending on your business, automation helps your employees in several areas including project management, scheduling, HR paperwork, customer relationship management, inventory management, data entry, finance reporting and more. Automating repetitive tasks gives employees more time to come up with innovative solutions like better processes, which can lead to productivity growth on an individual, team or organizational level.

6. Eliminate unnecessary meetings

While meetings are a great way to catch up with team members and touch base on projects and goals, unnecessary meetings are one of the biggest time wasters in today’s workplace. According to, 70% of meetings keep employees from completing their regular work. Managers and leaders should aim to reduce unnecessary meetings as often as possible. These include recurring check-ins, company-wide meetings, pre-meeting sync-ups and any meeting that doesn’t have a clear agenda. Encourage managers to require agendas for each meeting and let employees decline meetings they don’t need to attend. Many organizations create a set “focus time” across the company when no one is allowed to set a meeting, giving employees a chance to commit their focus to important tasks. 

7. Set and review goals regularly

Employees and teams need to know their work matters and contributes to your overall  organization’s success. Goals also change due to other circumstances, like reductions in the workforce, the introduction of new products and services or changes in customer expectations. Ensure your organization’s goals and objectives match your current state by reviewing them regularly. 

8. Improve the workplace environment

Whether your teams work remotely, in a hybrid environment or from an office, improving the work environment is a main way to increase productivity. This includes providing the best tools and technology to accomplish tasks, offering comfortable options for taking breaks and limiting distractions as much as possible. This may be easier to accomplish in a centralized office where leaders have more control over the space, but there are many ways to improve the environment for remote workers too. 

9. Focus on employee wellness

Employee wellness includes the full health of your employees, including mental, physical, social and economic health. Employee stress and burnout doesn’t just  drain productivity for employees who go through it. It also creates long-term impacts when other employees have to cover lost work, lowering morale and increasing employee turnover rates. In contrast, employers who focus on employee wellness see lower absenteeism and better retention rates. Well-being initiatives also improve employee job satisfaction, and research shows happy employees are 13% more productive.  

10. Promote delegation when needed

Many employees in the U.S. feel they need to work long hours or overtime to show their commitment to a company or prove they’re a good option for advancement. Unfortunately, this leads to high stress and increased risk of burnout for employees, even when they have good intentions. Encourage employees to delegate tasks when their plates are full, even if they don’t yet feel they’re overworked. 

Fostering good time management skills helps employees determine the best use of their time, but using workload management software to balance workloads gives managers and employees real data to delegate work as needed. Using ActivTrak, managers easily spot overworked employees and can reassign work before burnout comes into play. Underutilized employees also come to the forefront, providing opportunities for training and development that may have not been visible before. 

Streamline productivity management with ActivTrak

Productivity management techniques are essential for boosting performance and unlocking your company’s full potential. Exploring the techniques above is a great first step toward sustainable productivity improvements — especially when you use a platform like ActivTrak.

ActivTrak’s advanced productivity management platform provides unparalleled insight into employee productivity and well-being. Optimize your process and drive better business outcomes with our award-winning solutions to transform your work environment. Whether you're managing a hybrid or remote workforce, looking to monitor employee productivity, or aiming to prevent burnout, ActivTrak has the tools you need. Contact our sales team today to get started and take the first step toward realizing your full potential.

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