Productivity lies at the heart of every successful business. This is determined by how efficient and organized everything is. Even as a startup, it’s important to identify solutions that will help you be well organized so you can be as efficient as possible and reap the maximum return on your investment. With this in mind, here are some ways you can accomplish this.
Update Your Technology and Cybersecurity
Business News Daily says it’s easy to overlook regular software updates, especially if you’re in the middle of working on something important. However, you need to install these so your business doesn’t become vulnerable to a cyberattack. According to IT professionals, patching is the primary cause of most penetration including infections. It takes cybercriminals less than 24 hours to infect your business. This is why you need to be up-to-date with your software.
Organizing Projects and Teams
When you’re starting your business, your primary team is probably virtual and widely scattered. This increases the likelihood that misunderstandings and confusion can happen — especially in regard to who’s working on what and when it’s due. Business.com says tools like Wrike can help you with this. It’s an online organization tool that provides numerous ways to track performance and time on projects while setting controls to keep certain groups focused on a project and get the right information to the appropriate people. With Wrike, you can engage with your team and share due dates and expectations while also creating custom workflows and integrating with other existing files created in other software like Word, Excel, and Google Drive.
Increase Your Legal and Regulatory Awareness
Take some time to brush up on the legal aspects of your industry. Since laws and regulations frequently change, it’s also a good idea to retain an attorney to deal with the finer points, but you should still have an understanding of the broad strokes so you don’t run afoul. This includes things like federal and state existing laws and pending legislation — all of which help you make smarter decisions. There are many changes that go into effect when we elect a new president too. You shouldn’t wait until then to consult with an attorney though. Doing so yearly instead of waiting until a big issue arises will save you time and money down the road.
Organizing Business Strategy
Once you know what laws and regulations apply to you, it’s important to make sure that you also have a succinct, targeted business strategy. It should address your target audience, speaking directly to them. In order to this, you’ll need to know and understand what’s going on in your business at all times. This is especially true in regards to the messaging and content your employees are creating. Fortunately, companies like Searchmetrics can help you with this. They provide advanced analytics that shows you who’s most likely to buy your products or services. They can also show you the best ways to communicate with these clients so your business runs efficiently and increases its profit margins. By increasing your business’ effectiveness here and with the search engines you’ll quickly gain a greater presence, which means you’ll start engaging with key prospects instead of wasting time elsewhere.
Use the Cloud for Storage and Sharing
Today, most businesses have heard of the cloud. This service allows you to remotely maintain, manage, and back up your data and files online so you can access them from any location via any device as long as you can log onto the Internet. Big Data Made Simple says that a recent survey of over 800 business decision makers and users throughout the world found that many organizations have gained a competitive advantage through high cloud adoption. This number has almost doubled in the last few years — to the point that many professionals believe that by 2017 the public cloud services market will exceed $244 billion. While there are many advantages to using cloud storage, this is especially true when you employ the CRM like Copper. Some of these advantages include:
· Usability: All cloud storage services have desktop folders for both Mac’s and PC’s. This lets you easily drag and drop files between the cloud storage and your local storage.
· Bandwidth: Avoid emailing files to people and start sending them a web link to them via email.
· Accessibility: You can easily access your stored files from anywhere as long as you have an Internet connection.
· Disaster Recovery: Every business needs to have an emergency backup plan ready to use because you never know when an emergency may arise. You can easily use cloud storage as your back-up plan since all your files and information can be stored there, presenting you with a second copy of these important files when you need them. Since this storage occurs at a remote location you never have to worry about them as long as you have an internet connection.
· Cost Savings: You can reduce your annual operating costs by using cloud storage. While it costs about 3 cents per gigabyte to store your data internally, you can store it for even less on the cloud since you don’t need internal power.
Organizing Cash Flow
It’s easy to get so caught up in the other aspects of your daily business routine that you forget to send your customer an invoice or remind that that they have an overdue payment they need to take care of. This is why you should be using an online invoicing tool — one that gives you a dashboard view of your current invoices, those that are past due, and those that are upcoming (especially if you have recurring payments due). You can rely on companies like Freshbooks for this. This online invoice tool will send your customers invoices via email and they’ll even provide them with a convenient link to payment options — including credit cards, e-checks, and payment portals like PayPal. They’ll even let you set up automated reminders and acknowledgments so you have a steady stream of cash flowing into your business.