Profitability and sustainability tie in with business performance. If your business isn’t performing well, you can’t hope to see the growth and development every business owner dreams of. So how do you improve business performance?
Improving business performance isn’t all about long-term strategy and investment-heavy projects. Some quick hacks can help you make big changes. Simple measures like planning your day, cutting out old technology like fax machines and re-organising your employee structure can all provide immediate and dramatic results.
What does it mean to improve business performance? That depends on your business. It could be anything from making more sales to producing more products. However, when it comes to success, there is no variance. The difference between good business performance and bad business performance is the difference between success and failure. That’s it. It doesn’t matter if you need to make more phone calls or walk more dogs — good and bad performance is very black and white.
You either perform well, or you don’t.
Because of this, business owners need to always be thinking about how they can improve business performance — especially if they are facing challenges. But while many strategies often look to long-term solutions, what can you do to improve business performance now? When you are up against it, quick hacks for performance improvement are exactly what you want to hear.
You often find you can improve business performance through the better management of time. Why? Because if you can find a way to spend the resource of time more wisely, investing it in the right places when necessary, you’ll find your business can get more done. You can also complete tasks more effectively, and faster, which leaves room for other business processes to be carried out.
The simple and quick solution to improperly managed time is to plan. A brief planning stage early in the morning — or whenever your workday begins — can save as much as two hours of usually wasted time. Create an outline strategy of what needs to be done, when you need to do it, and how it is going to get done. Planning allows you to optimise time spent and improve business performance as a result.
Despite being outdated technology, fax machines are still widespread across British businesses — and the world. There are some pretty staggering fax statistics out there, including the fact billions of fax documents are sent each year, and that 43 million units are operating to this day. The fax machine remains so prevalent because fax is an important part of business communication. Without the ability to fax, you face connectivity barriers that are difficult to overcome.
Yet, being outdated, fax machines present problems. They are slow, immobile and not secure. Their existence within your business directly impacts performance by cutting productivity and introducing risk factors. So how do you improve business performance while retaining the essential practice of fax? You upgrade to online fax. Online fax by eFax uses the latest technologies, allowing faxing to continue, without reliance on outdated hardware. You can improve business performance immediately simply by signing up to eFax services.
Fax machines aren't the only drains on productivity in your business. There are many ways a small business can discover it is wasting resources unnecessarily. How this happens depends entirely on your business. You may find, for example, you are investing a lot of time in social media that isn’t paying off, or your business model includes free consultations that aren't converting into leads.
To improve business performance, you need to take a step back and evaluate.
What isn’t providing your business with the ROI it needs? Often we get stuck in patterns of familiarity and continue to complete tasks that aren't beneficial — simply because they are entrenched in business process. That or we complete them efficiently, using old systems or practices despite better options being available — similar to the fax machines problem. These types of weaknesses can be tough to spot for those working internally. If you are struggling to increase productivity, we recommend you have an expert advisor come in to audit your business’s performance and help you understand where you can up productivity to improve it.
It is becoming increasingly common to see individuals work from non-traditional environments. This may be from home, or even abroad. The connected and digital world we live in means you don’t need to rely on the — some might call old-fashioned — office headquarters anymore. However, this creates a problem for small business owners.
Traditionally, your software for work is found on your internal servers and accessed through a network of computers held within your place of work. This means that to complete work, employees need to be in a specific location — a limitation that doesn’t support the modern working lifestyle.
Cloud computing is one of the latest technology trends to transform the way employees manage tasks. Instead of accessing business tools from a central location, the tools are held on an external system and accessed through the internet from anywhere. Examples of this include eFax, Google Documents and Adobe Creative Cloud. These cloud-based tools can offer all the same functionality as software once housed internally, but through online access provides the flexibility required to meet the demands of our 21st-century work culture. Cloud tech is absolutely and unquestionably some of the best business technology available right now.
In the modern working climate, mobility is essential. The newest generation of employees focuses on remote access to employment. Travelling for work is also on the rise. As the service industry continues to expand, more and more individuals are looking to spend time away from the traditional office environment. Cloud-based software and tools like eFax all help to support task completion of remote and mobile work — but there is another hurdle to jump.
Access to power.
In the digital age, we are reliant on our smartphones and laptops. Almost all working environments require electricity to operate. Without access to power, your workforce can become unable to complete their tasks. In an office situation, this is not a risk, but out and about, it becomes more of a problem. The saviour of this dilemma is simple, yet still some of the best business technology you can find. Mobile power banks allow your workers to charge devices and maintain access to power wherever they are, so there is no disruption to business operations.
We live in an era of AI technology, machine learning, and automated solutions. Smartphones automate so many day-to-day tasks for us and have introduced AI to the residential environment. But how can we incorporate this kind of technology into a business in a way that isn’t just a gimmick, but actually benefits the brand?
Automation can start at a very basic level. You can use software tools to automate social media posts to maintain an active digital presence, send out reminder messages to clients, or even introduce AI to your customer experiences to answer real-time queries through the form of a chatbot.
But this is just stage one.
Automation within your industry can have explosive real-world benefits when engaged in a way unique to your situation. For example, automation in manufacturing includes the use of drones to monitor stock and dramatically increase productivity. In contrast, automation in customer-based operations can complete tasks like data acquisition in a way that reduces workload and allows for higher levels of work output at a lower investment. Application of successful automation depends on the industry. Still, there are very few businesses that cannot benefit in some way from this, some of the best business technology to emerge in recent years.
Let eFax lead the way in your business technology revolution. Discover how to send fax online and sign up today with our free trial offer. See for yourself why our systems belong on this list of the best business technology.