4 Time Saving Tips for Startups and SMBs
In the previous post of the series, we discussed the major cost cutting steps that can be adopted by accounting department at startups without hampering the overall performance. Obviously, money saved or earned is a measure of the performance. Apart from that, time is another quantity on which performance can be calculated. In this article, we will discuss how important it is for the startups and SMBs to accomplish the tasks on time.
‘The trouble is, you think you have time.’
This quote by Buddha was meant to better the lives. This can better your startup or smaller business as well. With the new businesses pouring at an abrupt pace, the competition is intensely high and your customers might not wait for long before switching to someone else for the solution. That is the first reason why your business must follow the time checks.
Profit margins, customer numbers, market share, conversion rate, etc. are various factors on which the business performance is calculated. However, the true achievement on theses parameters is worthy when they meet the time-defined targets. To notch past the competition, being quicker than others is an important criterion. To help you with that, here are some valuable tips for saving time at your startup while keeping the performance improving:
1. Customize Your Business Structure
A potent idea is not all that a startup requires for survival. A number of uncalled for challenges can turn up against the startup and if you do not have a proper structure of the operations your business can meet the dead-end. Most entrepreneurs understand it and they are able to layout a fine structure at the beginning to face those challenges. While preparing for lethal business challenges, they ignore the fact that things change quickly at startups.
Structuring of the business defines the way various operations are to be carried out. The smaller businesses usually follow multiple hat models, where the same employee handles multiple responsibilities. A well thought structuring plan can bring out the operations efficiently at the beginning when team size is smaller. But as the business grows and more employees join in (while some might have left as well) the earlier structure will cause confusion and start to slow down the pace of the operations.
Bring in the required flexibility with the structure, which will be able to accommodate the changes that come to your startup. Installing CRM and ERP can be a good solution to automate the job responsibilities. It can also provide the central monitoring of the structure as well.
The organizational structuring should ensure the maximum utilization of the resources without inviting any conflict between the responsibilities of the different departments of the business. CRMs and ERPs do exactly that. When the processes are streamlined and every department is clear with their responsibilities, the operations are bound to be delivered in a quick and effective way.
2. Enrich All Business Communications
The communication constructs any business. Right shape of communication enables the entrepreneur to make most of the talent available in the business. However, slacks or delays in the business communications disrupt the business in several ways. Substandard communication with the client harms the business reputations and hence the conversion may take more time and effort.
On the other hand, inferior communication system within the organization will slow down the overall processes and the quality may have to take the beating as well.
Over the years, email has been the most admired method of business communication. It is a consistent and reliable option but its usage is diminishing among larger businesses because of its slowness. BetterCloud survey indicates that 56% of respondents believe that real-time messaging will replace email as the primary communication solution. Businesses are evidently shifting towards the faster communication solutions.
To remain competitive with other players in the market, your business must opt for the same path. The faster communications will increase the speed of operations as well and the desired results will be delivered faster.
Along with that, the traditional phone system is always facing a downward curve in popularity. With progress in the cloud and VoIP technologies, on the connectivity over portable devices has started to make its space significantly. It has enabled a number of solutions, such as – predictive dialer, Automatic Call Distribution, etc. that can connect the clients with your business representative quickly and without asking for much efforts. Not only it lowers the investment cost but also enhances your business reputations.
3. Fine-tune the Accounting with Applications
Startup entrepreneurs are not commonly accounting experts and they take care of other responsibilities of the business. Hiring accountant seems like a huge unworthy expense to them. Since most of the government regulations require a well-monitored accounting for the businesses, you cannot escape accounting.
If you are not regular with the accounting operations, it can deprive the company of regular cash flow and accounting management. Since continuous cash flow and accounting keep the business up and running, such situations are not something businesses would enjoy being in. Eventually, lack of accounting skills and the pressure of tax season deadlines force entrepreneurs to invest a hefty time to get things on the right track.
Accounting applications are up there for the rescue of such entrepreneurs. Right from consistent bookkeeping and automated invoice generation to payment reminders and sync with bank accounts, these applications have the capabilities to do that all. This means all the expenses of your business can be tracked and recorded in the books automatically without demanding much of your time. QuickBooks, Xero, FreshBooks, etc. are some of the popular small business accounting software. Most of them are simple to use and even a user with novice accounting knowledge and work upon them quite well.
4. Balancing Work-life Equation
Working at a startup can be stressful and it can even be more stressful for the entrepreneurs. Most of those associated with the startup are enthusiastic about the idea and they can work out of their skin to deliver the results. In that attempt, the work-life equation may lose its balance.
As the initial enthusiasm can fade away after slight failures at the beginning and pessimism about the startup idea may build up. This negativity impacts the individual performance of the employees and delays with the operations are sure to happen.
It is not all about the performance of the employees, but the abilities of the entrepreneur with decision making can feel tremors at such frame of mind. With the struggling work-life balance, it becomes tough to get the thing back on track. So prepare for it right at the start.
Follow the usual stress relieving techniques and deploy them at the workplace. Moreover, encourage your employees to follow them. Offer enough holidays, follow the timings and avoid forcing someone to work overtime against their will, plan some parties, in which employees can bring their family with them, and there are more solutions that can come up. A healthy state of mind is the reason that will keep your employees at their best to deliver on time or even earlier.
Coming Up Next
Hope that these pieces of advice are helping you with your business. You can write your reviews and suggestions in the comments below. In the next article, we are writing about “Accounting on Cloud: Is it Really Comfortable and Easy-to-use?”. In the article, we will discuss the feel of practical usage QuickBooks from a Small business entrepreneur’s point of view.
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