Small-to-medium sized businesses (SMBs) apply almost everything under the sun to leverage advantage against competition. Something that is inevitably pulled out of the hat in order to get a competitive edge is the apt use of IT. From mobile devices to server racks, SMBs use it all. Here you can find out how your business can benefit by implementing tech in your day-to-day operations and in your planning processes for future expansion.
Reducing your operating costs is the first port of call for effective use of business IT. Applying enterprise software in the appropriate contexts enables rapid email exchange, collaborative file sharing, automated accounting and payroll, management of workflow and much more.
Using mobile technology means that your business is proactive, not reactive. Your employees are able to work on the go and deal with issues as they arise. Also, free applications such as WhatsApp means rapid and coherent communication between relevant parties.
Your SMB no doubt holds a wealth of sensitive data including customer information, confidential employee details and financial transactions. IT means that you can safely and securely store vast quantities of precious data protected by the latest firewall technology, anti-virus and anti-malware. Plus, your company has the added bonus of accessing cloud storage; a cost-effective, scalable and secure way of storing data, while having remote access.
Using the latest tech in your SMB automatically equates to increased employee productivity. While Office 365 applications obviously allow individuals to process information at the speed of light, productivity is also bolstered by the fact that IT also reduces the amount of human labour needed for business functions.
Tech can also have a direct impact on employee performance. For example, you can make employee appraisal information available online and line managers can thereby create measurable goals for their employees commensurate with company objectives.
Effectively using email, texting, messaging and websites all amounts improving communication in your business. Gone are the days of the landline phone and FAX. Instead, there is an array of communication methods to choose from. Simply put, your SMB is more accessible to customers who can contact you, place orders and leave feedback.
Employees too benefit from inter-office communication. Intranet provides employees with a centralized portal to access and update all types of files. Data is instantly available in real-time and this is what you want – effortless communication using the latest IT.
Broadening your customer base is the name of the game in a competitive business world, and that’s exactly what business IT facilitates. High-speed internet and e-commerce mean that your market needn’t remain local. Business IT provides the opportunity to enter national or international market sectors. This isn’t limited to retailers; service providers are also seeing the benefits of peddling their expertise in previously unexplored economic markets.
Having a functional, user -friendly website is a must for good business these days. Clients and consumers are able to access your site round the clock from anywhere on the planet. Also, even on a tight budget, you SMB can gain fantastic exposure via internet advertising and reach out to new markets.
Of course, there’s always the question of who can help you with your business IT? Easy answer. Team up with your local Managed Services Provider (MSP) for all your tech needs. The MSP will recommend an IT solution tailored to your company and implement it. Moreover, they will manage and monitor your systems and data and fix anything before it breaks. In a nutshell, the MSP gives you inner peace, so you can maximise your business functions and profits.