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The technology that will grow your business

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In the 21st Century, the links between business growth and technology are unquestionable. That said, there’s a huge number of people who still see tech as a necessary evil – a costly biproduct of a desire to grow. An interesting thing happens when IT possibilities are considered before growth possibilities. Embracing IT actually leads to a far greater set of growth possibilities – the keys to doors people often don’t know are there.  Here, we’ll explore some of the ways working with IT can actually present a world of growth opportunities.

Improving collaboration

Productivity is a huge factor for businesses – but, the reality is that you don’t need to innovate to get the most from your team – you simply have to make their daily tasks as simple as possible.

Your team almost certainly work together on projects and jobs – so why not make that collaboration as seamless as possible? A sure-fire route toward this kind of effective team work is through smart use of The Cloud.

While we’re all familiar with the basics of cloud-computing – the more sophisticated possibilities are often buried deeper in within the software and systems we use. In many instances, real-time collaboration on projects is possible – with Microsoft’s Office 365 and Google’s G-Suite products leading the way on this.

Studies actually suggest that this kind of in-app collaboration is more effective than collaborating in ‘real life’ – with some companies reporting a 10% increase in productivity as a result. While workforce growth usually involves recruitment, using the right kind of tech actually means you can get a lot more out of the resources your business already has onboard…

Using tech to outsource support

There’s no getting around the fact that supporting your IT network is expensive – with even a small team likely to cost in excess of $75,000 in wages alone.

If you feel like this is an amount of money that you’d rather allocate toward driving your business forward, the bringing an MSP onboard to manage your IT services is a great move to make.

In the past, this has generally meant that you need someone local to you – able to get to your site if they need to get hands-on with your systems. The good news is, the rolling-out of SD WAN systems that allow for network management is making this constraint a thing of the past.

Now, SD WAN and other network monitoring and management tools mean that your managed service provider could potentially be on the other side of the planet – but is still able to handle your network in much the same way as they would being in your server room.

Shopping around when you’re looking for the right MSP is crucial – as cost and service levels can vary enormously – making sure you’ve got the money and resources left to drive your business forward elsewhere.

Software that maximises conversions

There are certain applications that most business can’t run without. In some cases, they’re the payment systems that keep cash coming in – or the account management systems that mean orders are dispatched and services applied correctly – but few ‘must have’ applications concentrate on purely making your more effective.

That, however, is exactly what a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system will do for your business.

A good CRM system can be tailored to be based around your business and your practices. From the initial contact with customers – to the sign off and payment of a product or service, CRM makes it simple to know where you are at a glance – and apply your team’s effort accordingly.

This kind of efficiency is very, very difficult to manage without a sophisticated system in place – so human error often sees opportunities slipping through your business net. In fact, in case studies, CRM systems are shown to:

  • Increase customer satisfaction with business process by up to 75%
  • Decrease the cost of lead production by 25%
  • Increase conversion rates by up to 300%

Finding the right CRM system is almost guaranteed to help you squeeze as much out of your sales and marketing efforts as is possible – as well as hugely increasing your customer retention rates moving forward.

Creating a worldwide team

In years past, your business location had a huge impact on the quality of the team you could create. It was exactly this that led to certain cities and districts being considered ‘the place to be’ if you were a financial company, tech outfit, fashion house – or suchlike.

Now, cloud collaboration is making this a thing of the past. We already know the remotely collaborating is going to drive productivity – so why not bring a team in that are located across different cities, countries – or even continents?

From a growth point of view – being able to throw recruitment opportunities open to a worldwide audience is massive – especially with such a huge proportion of the world’s workforce now operating on a freelance basis. Even if a worldwide team is a step too far – even just offering to make your current team’s role more flexible (work from home opportunities for instance) – you’re likely to attract and keep the right people.

Reducing procurement costs

A huge number of new businesses emerge every single day – and each of those businesses has an IT requirement. The thing is, very few companies start with the backing of a huge budget – so getting the right equipment and services onboard can be very difficult.

The large software and infrastructure companies recognised this – and started to offer services in a way that is much more achievable for small businesses like these – an ‘as a service’ model. ‘As a Service’ isn’t actually buying software or hardware – it’s a way of accessing it for a monthly or annual subscription cost – and now extends from software (SaaS) – right the way through to large pieces of infrastructure like email and storage servers (IaaS).

If having cutting edge technology on your side would help you to push your business toward growth – then cost is no longer a hurdle that will stand in your way. Look at buying your tech ‘as a service’ and you’ll be able to keep up with companies that have almost unlimited budgets for the procurement of technology…

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