Have you ever had your manager or director tell you to stop doing your job? Probably never… But at CORE, we work as a team to take time to question everything we do and more importantly WHY. We also realize that constantly reviewing and analyzing why we do what we do can be disruptive and seem to slow down other regular activities that we need to accomplish, but that is the point. What if we could spend our days on creative tasks and concepts, rather than mundane repetitive activities that automation and smart processes could help us with?
So maybe now this is sounding a bit more familiar. Instead of someone saying “stop doing your job,” you probably do review your processes and build goals to improve them. And that is what we do as well. At CORE, we spend about three quarters of our time now on refining, redoing, rethinking what we do. In fact, we have opened up remote working to our employees as a way to nurture this way of working and thinking. Where do you come up with your best ideas? In the shower of course! Away from all those repetitive tasks, meetings and phone calls.
When you spend close to six hours a day coming up with, developing and deploying new ideas, you need a system and this is where OKRs come in. First… what is an OKR?
OKR (Objectives and Key Results) is a goal system used by Google and others. The system is used to create alignment and engagement around measurable goals.
If you haven’t heard about these, definitely take a moment to google them and review a few sites. The concept itself has even spawned entire agencies offering services to build and help audit your OKRs. We certainly understand the need to get started with setting, building and implementing OKRs, but we decided to take this concept head-on ourselves… The only thing is that we didn’t even realize we were doing it when we started! Let’s rewind a bit…
Back when CORE was founded, in 2007, we started out with a few handfuls of clients, so maintaining records was pretty easy to do manually. Another 7 years later, we started to grow rapidly and although we had continued to develop out processes, we did so in a very manual fashion. We were starting to hurt… As we grew, so did our vision for how we offered our services… Meaning, that not only were we underwater keeping track of what we were doing, but even more so with what we wanted to add on top. The question came up… should we just keep doing our jobs? Or should we look toward innovating, which would surely add more onto our plates.
What’s interesting in the language service industry, especially language and culture training, is this very unique term “Student driven/paced learning”. It is a concept that puts the client/student in charge of asking to be taught what they need to learn… But what if you don’t know what you need to learn? This also generates an aura of customization – which is true! – but allows for an excuse of not being able to track as easily since everything is SO customized…
We decided to go with our guts and are finally getting to reap the rewards. In 2019, we launched www.coreconnect.com, our new platform serving data directly from our trainers, instructors, interpreters and translators to our clients. As we launched this platform, our world absolutely changed! The opportunities for us to expand on customer service have increased 100-fold. Not only have we been able to put relevant data at the fingertips of our clients directly, but we have been able to clean up our processes with a focus on eliminating disruptive activities (for example getting signatures from our clients for each lesson attended). We have decreased “missed” attendance, (where the client does not attend a class but is still charged) down to less than 5% of our billed classes by allowing our clients access to canceling early through CORECONNECT. We have decreased payment processing time to all of our team members by 66%.
We believe that taking care of our Team Members (Our Admin Team, Instructors, Trainers, Translators and Interpreters) is one of our top priorities. World-Class client support starts with a happy team!
And if you think premier client support comes with a premium price, think again… At CORE, we can get more done, in real time with with less overhead and this gets passed along to our clients! It always has and always will. We hope you aren’t OK paying 20%, 50% or more for your training.
So… I guess we are done? We’ve accomplished our OKRs and now we can slow down for a while… Not so fast! Right now, our OKRs include improving start-up times for new client classes, launching our completely integrated LMS to monitor and promote student progress in courses and more! If you are interested, check in with us, or even better, experience the difference yourself!