Our last blog talked about our survey that asked clients: ‘What does a great business look like to you?’
We also asked clients a second question: ‘What will help you in making your business great?’ Responses were just as fascinating, and the most popular answer was ‘developing strong systems and processes’.
Clients mentioned the following when considering how to make their business great:
- Making best use of the technology available
- Using modern technology and applying the latest business data, information and guidance
- Getting help selecting and implementing the best possible software
- Collaborating with staff to develop quality systems and staff development processes
- Extra systemisation
The use of technology in business can be overwhelming. It moves so fast that we often hear clients saying, ‘We don’t know what we don’t know’!
However, what we do know is that many clients, and small-to-medium business owners generally, are making technology their number one investment priority.
There’s no doubt that technology is an enabler for developing systems and process, but those businesses who are most likely to be successful are those who focus on modelling and modifying their business processes, rather than concentrating exclusively on the technology. Software is becoming more sophisticated, so businesses need less technical knowledge in-house to keep them running. Over time, businesses may not need an internal person with specific software skills at all. Instead, businesses will shift their focus to how they want to run their organisation and how business processes can be improved so they operate more efficiently.
A great example of where software has made a huge difference to business processes without needing specialist IT people is Xero, and all the associated add-on software platforms. Yes, it’s software. But it’s been so well designed to cater for the needs of SMEs that you don’t have to do much leg-work. It’s sophisticated, easy to use and can easily sort out your finances and many of your businesses processes. Many of our clients have moved to this cloud accounting software, and it’s been a wise investment. They can:
- Run their business from work, home or on-the-go
- Have a clear overview of their current financial position, in real-time
- Collaborate easily with their team and advisors
- Operate numerous business functions such as point of sale, invoicing, receipt processing, payroll, timesheets, quotes, job management, rosters etc – with a range of additional apps.
There are obviously many other processes your business may have, but it’s good to know that so many business functions can be taken care of so easily, with some fairly simple and cost-effective technology.