We’ve all felt the effects of understaffing from time to time, whether it comes in the form of exhausted employees or as disgruntled clients trying to grab attention from an understaffed agency.
The fact is, staffing needs require careful planning, because it does affect all aspects of a business or agency. It can be a tricky balance, though.With too many employees on staff, overhead costs skyrocket and profitability suffers. Understaffing, however, drastically affects your ability to serve your customer base and hinders overall growth. Too often, when the decision to cut corners comes down, downsizing employees is the first option. While it may make sense on paper, understaffing will actually negatively impact your business in the long run. Here’s why:
- Costs Increase – Though cutting staff will reduce immediate payroll and benefits costs, severe understaffing will actually cost you more in the long run, as you increase the need to hire temporary workers, train and correct errors. You also drive up the need for qualified, permanent employees to work more overtime hours.
- Overworked Employees – Reducing staff puts an incredible amount of stress and pressure on those remaining. That stress will eventually lead to job dissatisfaction, decreased morale and even physical health ailments that require more time off to recover.
- Quality Suffers – With fewer employees to serve a vast customer base, quality of service will inevitably suffer. Your business will drive customers away and your very reputation will be at stake.
- Lost Business – Understaffing means missed opportunities for growth. You won’t be able to take on new clients or projects because you simply won’t have the qualified manpower to complete and deliver a quality product. And so, we see things come full-circle – As quality suffers due to understaffing, and your reputation flounders, your business will suffer.
Don't fall into the trap of thinking that cutting your staff will give your business room to grow in other ways. This could not be further from the truth. Keep your business adequately staffed to ensure that your clients or customers leave happy and return again in the future.