In finance, every decision and task matters. However, not all tasks are equally important. As a finance professional, you know that time is limited, and you can’t get it back once it’s gone. This calls for a serious question: Are you stuck doing $10 tasks when your skills are worth much more?
This article will discuss spotting the most valuable tasks and finding ways to automate or outsource the rest. This approach will boost your productivity and help you focus on the strategic parts of your job.
Understanding Task Value
It’s essential to know the real value of what we do. This means seeing beyond urgent tasks and focusing on what makes a difference. How we value our tasks can greatly affect both our own productivity and the success of our organization. Here’s a simple way to think about this:
- Skill Level and Impact: If a task needs special skills and has a big impact, like strategic planning or major contract negotiations, it’s very valuable.
- Replaceability and Scalability: Tasks that can be automated or done by someone else at a lower cost are less valuable. But tasks that need your unique expertise and authority are more valuable.
- Time Investment vs. Return: Think about what you get back from the time you put into a task. Tasks with high returns or benefits for the company are more valuable.
- Urgency and Importance: Tasks that are both urgent and important should be a priority. It’s important to know the difference between tasks critical for long-term success and those that seem urgent but less impactful.
Categorizing tasks into different value tiers—$10, $100, $1,000, $10,000—is an exercise in strategic thinking. It’s not about assigning exact monetary values but about encouraging a mindset shift. This shift in perspective is crucial for optimizing productivity, encouraging the delegation or automation of lower-value tasks, and focusing on high-impact work that maximizes the benefit to the organization.
How are you really spending your time?
Let’s look at the Task Valuation Chart below to put this concept into a clear perspective. It breaks down various tasks into distinct value categories, providing a practical guide to help you assess and prioritize your daily activities.
|$10 per hour tasks||$100 per hour tasks||$1,000 per hour tasks||$10,000 per hour tasks|
|Manual signing of checks||Training staff on fraud detection||Developing AP policies and controls||Strategic planning for financial liquidity|
|Data entry for invoices and payments||Handling vendor queries and communications||Analyzing cash flow related to payables||Leading digital transformation initiatives|
|Filing and organizing physical documentation||Conducting regular AP ledger maintenance||Implementing check fraud prevention measures||Negotiating major vendor contracts|
|Basic reconciliation tasks||Preparing and scheduling payment runs||Integrating AP systems||Directing company-wide cost reduction initiatives|
Understanding and applying this task valuation chart enables you to allocate your time and resources more effectively, ensuring that your focus is always on the highest-value activities.
$10 per hour tasks are routine and administrative, crucial for day-to-day operations but not directly contributing to strategic goals. They are prime candidates for automation or delegation.
$100 per hour tasks require more specialized knowledge and have a more substantial impact on operational efficiency. These tasks benefit from a skilled AP manager’s oversight but can often be streamlined with the right tools and processes.
$1,000 per hour tasks involve strategic decision-making and significantly impact the company’s financial health. They require a deep understanding of both AP processes and the broader business context.
$10,000 per hour tasks are high-level strategic activities that shape the financial strategy and direction of the entire organization. They demand the full attention and expertise of senior finance professionals and profoundly impact the company’s success.
Checkflo: Streamlining Your Financial Operations
Automation is a key player in enhancing efficiency in financial management. This is where Checkflo offers a practical and impactful solution. Designed to automate the check management process, Checkflo effortlessly fits into your existing systems and workflows, streamlining once time-consuming tasks. With Checkflo, the automation of routine yet crucial tasks like check printing, signing, and mailing is simplified. This means less manual effort and more time for you to focus on strategic decisions. The integration of Checkflo into your system not only saves time but also minimizes errors that are common in manual processes, enhancing overall operational efficiency.
As we conclude, remember that strategically valuing and managing your tasks is the key to transforming your workday. Embrace tools like Checkflo to streamline and automate routine processes, freeing up your time for high-impact activities. Take the first step today: assess your tasks using the principles discussed and see how Checkflo can fit into your strategy for greater efficiency and success.