Technology can be both a lifesaver and the bane of existence for a busy company today. No matter how small or large your business, you encounter some forms of technology on a daily basis. We even have technology to protect us for when our technology fails us.
A great business team will be able to work with the technology it has effectively and efficiently. Technology chosen for your company is specifically a strategic business asset. It is an investment and often it doesn’t come cheap. You need to be able to justify the costs for software, hardware, and programs that help your business run more productively. What works for one business may not be the best choice for another, so it’s all about exploring your options and finding the best to reach your needs.
Let’s look at some ways that programs help boost business productivity.
Boosting Business Productivity with Team Collaboration and Organization
Cloud and team collaboration tools can be useful when you have multiple people working on a project or parts of a project together. This allows each individual to do their part simultaneously or in conjunction with other members of the team doing their parts so that it all comes together in the end. You can also easily check on deadlines, status reports of each person, and see progress in real time.
The great thing about team collaboration tools is that they allow you to be productive and communicate effectively no matter where each team member is located. They’re especially great for remote workers and telecommuting employees.
Your team members can also work efficiently while on the go with programs that sync between devices and mobile technology like smart phones. You and your employees can stay connected to the business and communications no matter where you are. This is something that simply wasn’t possible 10 or 20 years ago. There are keys to successful virtual collaboration that will help your team stay on target and complete their goals.
Boosting Business Productivity with Security
Businesses of all shapes and sizes also know that they will face a number of security threats. Online and system security are some of the biggest risks you need to minimize for a successful business. The operating system you choose to run in office/business computers can help boost security, as well as any added programs, firewalls, and spyware/adware software.
Some businesses also choose to run DNS blocking of certain domains and material on their business networks. For example, you might block all social networking tools to worker computers in order to boost productivity and enhance performance.
Drive encryption and anti-malware programs give you the ultimate data protection. If a business system gets infected, you will suffer lost wages and time, lost productivity, and even worse, you could be severely hacked and your data compromised. Prevention is always the best solution versus treating these problems after they occur.
Boosting Business Productivity with Financial Management
Another way that technology boosts productivity within a business is with financial management. You can use tools to aid with accounting processing and procedures, which take a lot of man hours when done manually and can contain errors that would be monumentally detrimental to the financial safety of your business. There are invoicing, billing, and company payroll matters to deal with, not to mention utilities and business expenses, insurance, and more.
A great financial management program can shave hours of time off of bookkeeping efforts and also ensures you have everything done correctly. Some popular programs include FreshBooks, Intuit Online Payroll (formerly PayCycle), QuickBooks, NetSuite, and Microsoft Dynamics.
Boosting Business Productivity with Backups and Data Protection
What’s worse than losing important data with no backup right when you need it the most? There is very little that compares to this in the business sense. We live in a data-driven economy and without direct, constant data availability, your business will suffer.
30% of all businesses that have a major fire go out of business within a year. 70% fail within five years. (Source: Home Office Computing Magazine). Are you prepared for disaster? These businesses fail in part due to lack of backup data or adequate, updated backup data. Depending on the severity of the loss, it can be impossible to ever bounce back if you’re not prepared in advance with protection against data loss.
And it’s not just a temporary loss like fire that can destroy a company quickly. 93% of companies that lost their data center for 10 days or more due to a disaster filed for bankruptcy within one year of the disaster. 50% of businesses that found themselves without data management for this same time period filed for bankruptcy immediately. (Source: National Archives and Records Administration in Washington)
So as you can see, even a short period of data loss can be catastrophic to your business. You need the security that comes with data protection and backups. Knowing that you have data protection and backups will also increase business productivity, which increases your bottom line.
Boosting Business Productivity with Virtual Office Space
Yet another benefit to technology and productivity is the access to virtual office space. We now have the tools needed to work nearly anywhere. Not so long ago, it seemed like a crazy idea, but now virtual offices can be successful. The tools that technology brings us make what was once impossible now easier than ever. Today, it’s likely that nearly every employee you have can do what they do from their home office or virtual office. This benefits productivity in many ways. It also gives you and your employees more flexibility, which also increases success in business.
There are many tricks and tools that technology brings us for business productivity — far too many to list in one article — but these are some of the major pain points for businesses and how technology can help combat these issues and make things easier, more productive, and more efficient for your business and your employees. In the long run, this means an increased ROI and employee security.
What types of technology does your business use for increased productivity?