Business technology spending will increase by 8.9 percent by the end of 2017, according to research from Forrester. Their study also found that cloud adoption will hit a tipping point, with firms using software-as-a-service (SaaS) as a replacement for existing software hitting critical mass.
Upping your technology game may already be on your business agenda, but a lingering question remains. Which technology upgrades should you use? Start with contract-free upgrades that allow flexibility to experiment without impacting your bottom line. Here are five ways to get started:
You don’t need a team of bookkeepers and accountants to help keep your records organized and balanced. Instead just focus on just the services you need, and scale up as your needs grow. Bench offers dedicated, virtual bookkeeping that’s billed on an annual or monthly basis, depending on your needs. Plans range from Micro to Enterprise to help keep track of your business financials and keep you organized for tax time.
Businesses focus on data and digital security, but often skimp on protecting their physical property. Whether you work from a home office or rent a space for your business, you need security safeguards in place. The LAPD recommends that businesses ensure their windows have secure locks and burglar-resistant glass, or even installing metal grates on all windows except display windows.
Take it a step further by purchasing a contract-free security camera system from Lorex Technology. These systems can be monitored from your smartphone or tablet. So you can check on your property wherever you are, whether you’re meeting with clients or on vacation.
Project Management Systems
There’s no longer a need to manage projects with papers, endless email threads and status reports. Keep everything in one place with a system like Slack. Sign-up for monthly or annual service, and start organizing team conversations in open channels so everyone involved in a project can see the same thing. Slack also allows for calls, direct messaging and file uploading where you can search within PDFs, Word or Google docs to find the information you need.
Web Automation Apps
Apps may help streamline systems and processes for your business, but the sheer volume of apps available can end up being time wasters as you launch and use each app independently. Create seamless workflows between web apps with Zapier. For example, businesses who take notes in Evernote can sync up with Zapier to create Trello cards to manage their projects. Or build a workflow to automatically import subscribers from Gmail or Google Sheets into Mailchimp.
Eliminate the need to post and re-post social media updates with a tool like Meet Edgar, and double your traffic at the same time. Create buckets of social media updates from your business blog, news or to manage your client’s social media needs. Meet Edgar can continuously re-post from different buckets at optimal times of the day to streamline your social media needs. You’ll ultimately spend more time strategizing and less time implementing.