The most successful people, are those that are highly productive and are masters at getting things done efficiently and effectively. They know what to focus on, when to focus on it, and for how long. Technology has made productivity more achievable and easier for everyone, but only if you embrace it, and not let it rule your life.
Here are my Top Tech Tips:
Asana – This is a project and task management tool that we use in our organisation. Think Outlook Tasks on steroids. If there is more than one person in your team, this is an absolute MUST. It is free for up to 15 users and has great functionality.
Google Apps – I was a Microsoft junkie. I had been using Microsoft Office for years and knew it inside out. I was avoiding the change because i was so comfortable with Office. At the beginning of 2015, we switched from Office to Google Apps. What a difference! The most significant difference is the number of apps that integrate with Google Apps. This provides almost limited additional functionality and automation.
Google Sites – As with Google Apps, this is a must for any business and their intranet/ Systems manual
Secret Sever – In an age where internet security is critical to every business, Secret Server provides online access on your PC and phone for all of your passwords. You can share access within your organisation. Never write down another password again.
Orderfast – An amazing app-based ordering system designed for small business. OrderFast allows you to place all your stock orders straight from your smartphone, iPhone or iPad at the click of a button
Online Accounts – Don’t mess around with accounting software. Having your accounts in the cloud is an absolute must – no exceptions, for any business. QuickBooks Online is fantastic for small business and has tonnes of integrations, making it extremely powerful. We use QuickBooks Online for all of our businesses.
IWS – Australia’s largest provider of integrated rostering and payroll, IWS offers cloud based rostering for shift based workers as well as fully integrated payroll and bookkeeping for businesses. Priced especially for small businesses, IWS is a great solution to allow business owners to stop working in their business and work on it.
UpWork (formerly Odesk) – Find freelancers on Upwork – the world’s largest online workplace for freelancers. My business has used Upwork for a few years. We have had mostly good experiences with freelancers. the benefit vs cost is significant, although ensure you match the candidate to the job, and usually it is best to have a couple of final candidates and put them both to the test. Clear communication on what is expected is also essential. Outsource to Upwork everything you possibly can. Trust me, you will save a bomb AND the quality and timing of work is great and it’s twenty-four hours a day!
Facebook – Most businesses rely on people spending money with them to grow…correct? To achieve this, we need customers, and therefore in most cases we need new leads or opportunities. If your business is not yet on Facebook, then this should be a serious consideration for you. Not only can you post and update your current customers, but Facebook is one of the best (if not the best) lead generation platform. With recent changes, it has become even better.
Landing Pages – Landing pages are like a stand alone web page or series of web pages where you send your leads to (rather than your website). A lead page guarantees you a higher rate of conversion or opt-in than sending to your web page which is often confusing for a lead as on a web page, there is usually no one single purpose and call to action. There are a few great options for lead pages. In our company we use Instapage, and have also used Leadpages.
MailChimp – Online email marketing solution to manage contacts, send emails and track results. Offers plug-ins for other programs. Mailchimp is where the information that your leads have submitted through your lead page is stored. Mailchimp then allows you to create marketing channels, email flow and so forth to communicate with these customers, to move them from a lead to a paying customer.
With all of the above, there are skills required to use these tools. It is always best to work with someone who knows what they are doing. Our suggestion always is, learn as much as you can from a trusted source, and then find a company you can outsource the work to, that will give you the greatest results. Ultimately, you should budget cost vs. return, and look at all technology as an option to increase productivity and sales in your business.
The advice above is based on what has work in our business. The advice may not be right for everyone, and you should consider this when making decisions. Feel free to reach out to us for assistance.
Do you have a story to share about Technology? We’d love to speak about how we could help your business to move forward with Technology and have great success. Call Bx on 1300 068 229 or find out about our Business for Life Program.