While there are a lot of businesses created, not a lot of them survive, let alone become big businesses. This is unfortunate, but luckily there is something you can do about it. You must have the right combination of people, systems, and processes in place. Together these all must focus on investing and growing your business. This is complex so you must plan for it, as well as work to standardise and automate your processes when possible instead of always depending on humans to do the work for you.
Automation leads to scalability
To scale your business, you’ll need to add new personnel, enter new markets and territories, obtain more customers, and offer more products or services. All the while you must also maintain control of your business’ costs and capabilities too. As you do so, you’ll quickly notice how the processes and software that served you well in the beginning no longer work as well today. When this happens you must find a technology platform that can support your business as its processes, transaction volumes and complexity grows. Make sure that the one you choose lets you quickly respond to opportunities and threats without being distracted by the need to maintain unwieldy IT systems. The technology you employ here should free your management team up to see, control, and respond to your business’ changing circumstances so they can run an efficient, customer-centric organisation for you. This is done by automating and integrating operational processes – something that will let you still continually deliver exceptional service to your customers.
Surround yourself with talent
B Plans says you need the knowledge and expertise of the right people if you want to be able to position your tech startup on the cutting edge of its industry. Make sure you continually strive to source and engage your niche’s best talent. By spending time building a well-organised team of competent and dedicated employees you’re giving your startup the “life blood” it needs so it can get closer to its key objectives. Make sure you start working on this early on so people will want to work for your business. As you do so, also make sure to develop a recruiting system that efficiently attracts your field’s top talent. You don’t have the time to waste on a badly-organised recruitment process.
Collect and use data to your advantage
Your data is important throughout your growth process. When you’re able to gain greater insight into your online customer data, you can personalise your products and services so shoppers across multiple channels and markets throughout the world will be interested in seeing what you’ve got. Your drive, ambition and hard work are pivotal points here, as is your ability to recognise technology’s critical role in supporting your brand’s sustainable growth. When you take the time to invest in the right management systems to support your brand’s agile, adaptable growth regardless of the changing market conditions that surround you, eventually your brand will come to a point in which it reaches its full potential.
Build a solid online image
About 81 per cent of shoppers go online (e.g. Google, social media) to conduct some research about companies and the products or services they offer before making a purchase. This is why it’s so important to have a good reputation – especially as your brand identity continues to spread through various digital channels. To run a successful business today you must have a good reputation and a product or service that’s attractive for your target audience. Don’t be afraid to check out how your competition is doing in this regard. Do some market research to find out where your audience hangs out so you can meet them there. You don’t need 5 social media profiles. You simply need to learn where your audience is and interact with them there so you’ll have the best ROI. Use social media scheduling software so you do this consistently. You should also create a company blog to share project news and what’s going on in your company’s life.
Cloud-based systems offer scalability
Small business phone systems help remove communication complexity from business process and help you save precious time. Byte Start says this doesn’t have to be expensive. With today’s modern cloud-based technologies you’ll enjoy scalability, agility and a low overall cost of ownership. This will free you from cumbersome IT overheads so you can manage growth on your terms thanks to technology’s ability to scale with your organisation.
By opting for cloud-based apps that you can use on a global scale and automating manual, time-consuming tasks (e.g. tax compliance, multi-currency transactions), you can remove any major barriers you have standing in the way of an international business expansion. Of course, when you do undergo such an expansion you’re bound to be faced with financial consolidation, order management, inventory management, customer relationship management (CRM), and increasingly complex tax compliance laws while you’re also facing a growing volume of multi-currency, multi-language, and multi-country transactions. These things are easier to manage from within one cloud-based business management system that harnesses scalability, flexibility, and agility so your business can run more efficiently and be more aggressive about its expansion plans.
Manage your growth
Don’t overlook the problems that come with premature scaling. Doing so is a huge mistake – one that’s caused the failure of many startups.
To understand premature scaling, you must first understand scaling. This is a specific point in your startup’s life where positive growth is experienced. When this happens, scaling can happen in many ways, including acquiring new employees and increasing your marketing budget. You’ll know you’ve reached this point because you’ll make more sales. The problem here starts when you’re focused on advancing one area of your business without properly synchronising the other parts so they can grow along with it. Unfortunately, this is a problem that about 70 per cent of businesses face today – and one that causes the failure of about 74 per cent of them. As such, you must pay attention to the early signs of premature scaling (e.g. too many employees) and act immediately. Do so by returning your focus to your customers, finding out gather their feedback is, and changing your products or services to meet their needs.
Evan Morris, Networking Manager, MWR
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