Help Desk

Time for a tech tune-up?

At Pure SEO we know what it’s like to experience huge growth. Starting as a one-man band in late 2009, today we have more than 30 staff across three offices. 

One of the biggest problems we have encountered is ensuring this growth is done in a sustainable manner; to facilitate this we have adopted and developed technology.

Technology is a part of our everyday business lives – from emails, to databases, to research, and everything in between. When your company is in a stage of rapid growth, it’s worth knowing which technology to invest in to help you survive the rollercoaster. 

  1. Internal communication
    Internal communications applications, such as Yammar, Slack and Bitrix24, are great for automating tasks and increasing collaboration within the company. Companies have different preferences and ways for using these tools. For some, they can be useful for project work, and for others, they can help unite a company spread across different geographical locations. When used well, internal communications tools streamline processes and help to maximise productivity across your company. Internal communications are also a great way for employees to communicate in a less formal environment, and can have a great impact on employee relationships and job satisfaction.
     
  2. Staff feedback
    How you manage feedback can have a significant impact on the happiness and engagement of your employees. Staff feedback technology, such as Tinypulse, offers employers a way to feel the pulse of their workforce and facilitate conversations on improvement. Having a strategy in place for your staff to provide open and honest feedback means they are far more likely to communicate on an issue as it arises, giving you the chance do something about it. Retaining and engaging the best staff is important for company growth, and having an avenue for open feedback allows you to stay on top of how your employees really feel.|
     
  3. Employing right
    |It can be hard to find the perfect fit – you not only want someone who has the right skill-set, but someone who will also be the right fit for your business, with similar values that will complement your team. Getting the right people is vital to the growth of your business; not only does it save ongoing recruitment costs, but it also ensures that you retain knowledge and loyalty within your company. Recruitment software, such as Weirdly, use data science that can screen applicants and find those who are worthwhile – using guidelines set by you – without the need for psychological testing, which can be expensive and time consuming for all parties involved. 
     
  4. CRM: track and analyse sales
    Most businesses have some sort of CRM system, but recently there has been increased pressure for businesses to become tech-saavy in order to remain competitive. Online CRMs, such as Salesforce or SugarCRM, offer an easy way to manage your clients and prospects, eliminating many of those tasks that take up time but don’t add any value, such as searching through email archives to find the latest interaction. CRM tools have evolved to integrate with other tools and services, which customers use to engage with a business.  They organise contact information, interaction records and day-to-day customer communications, all in one place, to streamline the sales and marketing process, giving your team more time to focus on their core roles. 
     
  5. Accounting software
    Accounting doesn’t have to be expensive or complex. Recent accounting software applications, such as Xero and MYOB, include time-saving features such as automated entries, invoicing, bill payments, expense reports, financial reports and reconciliations. Most accounting software can also give you a snapshot of your business’s health, which takes away the guesswork of your incoming versus outgoing expenses. An accounting system offers a record of all your previous transactions, and can save time and money in the long run. This software is also very easy to use, meaning you won’t need to fork out for an accountant if you’re just starting out. 
     
  6. Workflow software
    Many companies look to a workflow management system to raise productivity. Workflow management software, such as Harvest or Workflow Max, should allow for repetitive business processes, alert the user to incomplete tasks, and give an overall picture of workflow through performance metrics. It also helps to facilitate communication between employees working on the same project. For a business to operate efficiently, it’s vital that workflow software is streamlined and business processes managed as seamlessly as possible. Being able to see who in your business is accountable for what, and how efficient they are, gives you a good indication of what investments you need to undertake to grow further. It is important that your workflow software is integrated with your overall IT infrastructure to be sustainable during a period of growth. |
     
  7. Monthly management dashboards
    Management dashboards or Executive dashboards, such as Zoho, help a manager or executive better manage the business, to improve sales and subsequently growth. These work by connecting the various application programming interfaces, such as your CRM, accounting software, emails and website analytics and compiling them in one place. They provide greater visibility and insight into what is happening in each corner of your business, measure company performance and compare this to your business plan. The ideal dashboard does this in real-time, so that you can react in a timely manner, to minimise any potential issues, or maximise positive business activity. 
     
  8. Analytics/sales dashboards
    Data analysis needs to have focus and intent. Most businesses contain a range of different kinds if data, from their financial position to the effectiveness of their teams. Sales dashboards, such as Domo or Cloudbridge, are especially useful for sales managers, as they provide data-backed answers to specific questions. Dashboards are useful for growing businesses, as they show what is happening on the ground – how sales are progressing, which leads are coming through, and if the business is headed in the right direction to meet growth targets. These can also be used to manage performance and show where further resources are needed. An analytics/sales dashboard is useful across all levels of a business as it visually showcases common goals, and the progress your team is making. 

Through technology, your business can benefit from increased data centricity, improved efficiency and communication and a more streamlined business pipeline, all of which help to deliver and withstand rapid business growth. 

Publishing Information
Magazine Issue: NZBusiness October 2016 Page Number: 42