Growing your business can be expensive and challenging, and for most businesses the largest cost (and risk!) relates to employees. Studies have shown that successful recruitment can cost as much as 20% of the employees salary, and as much as 50% of the salary if the recruitment ultimately fails.
With such significant costs at stake many small businesses are looking for ways to expand their businesses without hiring more staff, and the good news is that technology provides many options that can help the business owner to do exactly that.
We have listed below some of the best options to intelligently expand your business with technology –
Improve your website
The key to understanding the function of your website is to think of it as one of your employees. It needs to be designed, updated and managed so that it can deliver results and be as productive as possible.
If an employee is hired and then left without guidance, support or supervision they are likely to perform poorly, and the situation is exactly the same with your website.
You can improve your website in many ways, and some that we would suggest include –
- Mobile – make sure that your site is fully compatible with mobile devices (Google will make it harder for customers to find your site if you ignore this!).
- Content – ensure that your content is complete and updated regularly, and that the style of writing and language used is suited to your target audience. If you provide service to a specific industry, feel free to use the specific technical terms and acronyms they would know and use.
- Service – your site can help you improve customer service and reduce your costs at the same time. If you provide support or information to your customers you may find that some of them would be happy to access the information directly online rather than contacting you. They may also be happy to use an online chat service, rather than a phone call, which can make your support staff more efficient.
Making changes to your website should not be expensive, and should cost far less than the salary of a staff member, but the overall benefits and savings from a well designed and managed website can be far greater than the benefits of adding an additional person to your team. Improving your website will allow you to reach new prospects and customers, and expand your business revenue, with minimal employee time required.
Mobilise your team
Empowering your staff to access their applications from any location, and specifically when they are at home or away from the office, can provide a huge boost to productivity. Your staff will appreciate the flexibility to be able to check their emails or action an item when they ‘have a moment’, and you may find that allowing for some flexible working arrangements will also boost staff morale and productivity as well.
Customer service can also be dramatically improved if customer facing staff can be given real-time access to information so that they can provide better information to customers, on the spot.
Providing secure mobile access to your systems is relatively easy, provided that you do it correctly. In some cases you may be able to offset your costs be reducing your office space and equipment. The mobile devices you will need can be easily managed and secured – we published a blog article about that topic that you can read HERE.
The improved productivity, flexibility and customer service that flow from mobilising your team can allow your business to handle more work, without adding staff to the team.
Studies have shown that traditional business meetings are simply not working, and can waste as much as 31 hours of employee time each month. That’s bad enough, but consider the additional costs and time lost arranging meetings where staff need to travel between offices to all meet in person at one location on a regular basis!
Of course, there are ways to make the business meeting better and to avoid travelling to meetings, but there are alternatives approaches than many small businesses are finding can allow staff to work collaboratively without needing formal meetings at all.
Powerful collaboration tools can allow teams to publish and share their work with their colleagues in real time, allowing each person to be kept up to date without interruptions. Contrast this with the typical situation where each person has to pause work to prepare a status update report and then attend a meeting where each person updates the meeting with their status.
Collaboration tools empower the team to arrange communications any time they are needed, and allow discussions to be focussed and brief, with no need for a formal agenda or the attendance of staff who may not be needed.
Adding collaboration tools to your business can significantly improve productivity and reduce a lot of wasted staff time, allowing your team to handle more work without new people.
Technology provides many options to help you to expand your business intelligently, without expanding your staffing levels.
If your business is seeking to expand in the new financial year we encourage you to call us today on 1300 138 761 or email us at contactus@rodin,com.au, or simply click HERE and we will be in contact with you.