Owning and running your own startup can be incredibly rewarding. The pride, excitement and sense of accomplishment associated with being your own boss is profound. However, the startup and small business sectors are volatile, bringing an endlessly challenging operational environment and significant pressure to grow and expand.
Whilst there is no typical startup or mall business, all new ventures can be overwhelmed by business growing pains. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, more than 60 percent of small businesses fail during the first three years of establishment, while 90 percent of startups also fail. Inefficiencies and heavy admin processes often stem from founders and business owners being time poor, having limited access to resources and a restricted cash flow. The way a business manages these pain points can ultimately determine future success.
These problems often indicate that internal systems need reviewing; improvements to relieve problems can allow for a new stage of growth and productivity. By committing to streamlining administration, it can help to reduce stress from operational tasks and allow for a more efficient outcome.
Schedule your social media and content
Creating content and social media amplification can be tedious and painful. A simple way to implement structure and consistency into your social presence is by developing a content calendar. This allows you to map out social media posts and track the concurrent advertising, blogs and other forms of content you are planning to run. By utilising platforms such as Buffer, or simply an Excel document, you can develop content in advance and schedule posts across all social platforms in one go.
Automate your systems
Poor time management and unnecessary processes can and will hurt your business. Using automated systems, time saving tools or online programs to encourage productivity can help transition your business into a more efficient and adaptive organisation. Consider different ways to automate time consuming tasks, such as email campaigns, accounting, payroll, timesheets, cybersecurity and printing.
Use CRM software for your business
CRM or customer relationship management software allows businesses to gain a greater understanding of customer preferences and identify prospective clients. Rather than relying on business cards, handwritten notes and updating customer information manually, this software can help improve sales leads, efficiency, data security, productivity and generate informed decisions on customer experience based on accurate data. The benefits of CRM software for startups are significant and can generate more powerful relationships with customers.
Look after your staff
As a startup, your staff are your key to growth. Attracting, finding, vetting, paying and retaining employees is incredibly time consuming. By investing and prioritising the needs of your staff, you place your greatest financial asset at the centre of your operations. Some strategies to reduce employee turnover include:
– Offer clear pathways to a pay increase or promotion
– Create balanced workloads – spread the thankless tasks between your staff
– Foster responsibility and initiative
– Conduct regular performance reviews
– Build a culture of fun
Start using cloud accounting
Consolidating your accounting needs into a single cloud platform is a wise move, helping your business to work smarter and faster.
Cloud accounting can very quickly provide a better overview of your finances, in real time, and the multi-user access allows for easy collaboration online between colleagues and advisors. It provides real-time accessibility to financial records, from any location or device, and allows invoices to be issued quickly. By using an online platform, it removes the need to backup and store data and reduces the risk of losing valuable information.
It is critical for startups to conduct a regular review of internal processes, analysing ways to ease the pressure of administrative demands and pain points. By streamlining these systems, it can help you to commit your time to building you business and focusing on longer term strategies.
Alex Alexandrou is General Manager at Reckon.