Published on July 8th, 2022
Maybe you started your company in a small storefront, a home-based office, or even the proverbial garage. But you’ve been busy expanding your humble roots since then, and you’ve noticed things are getting more challenging to manage.
More orders, project add-ons, and new hires and facilities require additional oversight and organization. Because of this, your growing company may need more tech and software to stay productive and efficient.
Technology and software extend and supplement human capabilities to help increase capacity. With the assistance of specific applications, a developing organization doesn’t have to go through as many growing pains.
Here’s an overview of four software solutions to consider as your company expands.
1. Project Management Applications
The upside of a growing business is additional work starts flowing in. Along with those projects comes added revenue and more to keep track of.
Assigning priorities isn’t usually the hardest part of managing everything. It’s knowledge of where every moving piece is at and monitoring various milestones for completion. Another significant challenge is tracking shifting priorities as workloads ebb and flow.
While project management software helps your growing team track workloads, it can also sort assignments by priority level.
Employees no longer have to manually sort and resort through projects to cherry-pick which tasks they should be working on. Besides priority levels, tasks can also be categorized by severity.
Classifying work this way lets employees know whether individual assignments critically impact the project or aren’t as important.
Filtering or sorting tasks by priority and severity ensures the most crucial work gets tackled first. There’s less of a chance the team will miss essential deadlines.
At the same time, sorting features within project management solutions assists employees with working through backlogs. As more significant work gets marked as complete, lower priorities can move to the top of the list.
2. Customer Relationship Management Software
Businesses typically expand because of the appeal of a product or service. That interest can develop within a single market, prompting a company to branch out into related products or services.
A business’s offerings can also catch on in neighboring markets. Both situations lead to a growth in the organization’s customer and prospect base.
As leads and clients increase, sales and marketing teams need tools to help manage them all. Customer relationship management software facilitates this by separating leads and customers into separate databases.
Sales teams can track which people they’ve contacted and when. Employees can document the results of their outreach efforts and determine whether follow-up is needed.
CRM solutions also have features that allow potential and existing customers to be classified by type. Clients can be segmented by products or services, geographic areas, and engagement or activity levels.
Marketing teams are able to track and automate email campaigns and create and separate contact lists for A/B tests. Marketing can always leverage those lists to retarget people for specific messages, including upgrade promotions.
3. Inventory Management Solutions
A U.S. Census Small Business Pulse survey reported that 36% of small businesses experienced domestic supply chain delays in 2021. Most of those interruptions happened in manufacturing, construction, and retail and wholesale trade.
Without a way to track your inventory, supply chain delays might become difficult to manage or anticipate.Knowing what’s not arriving on time can prevent you from launching sales initiatives for those products, averting customer and employee frustration. In the meantime, promotions could highlight in-stock or leftover merchandise.
Inventory management solutions let employees see stock levels throughout a retail or wholesale network. Estimated replenishment dates, supplier networks, and current product levels are contained in a centralized location.
Store and warehouse managers throughout a company’s operations can make more informed decisions by using inventory solutions.
They know when to back off on ordering certain products and when they should request more. Since employees gain visibility into a business’s entire supply chain, they can better coordinate contingency plans for shortages or overages.
4. Human Resources Software
As a business grows, so does the number of its employees. More staff is needed to address an expanding customer base and enable timely and efficient product and service delivery.
But as with that growing client database, adding employees means more information to organize, track, and manage.
Assembling a human resources department or bringing an HR manager on board can certainly help. The general rule of thumb is to put an HR department in place once you have roughly 50 employees.
However, expecting human resources to track your workforce’s information using spreadsheets or word processing software is unrealistic. HR needs more robust solutions to function effectively.
Employee management and HR applications store staff members’ data, including salary or hourly rates and important paperwork.
These solutions also track vacation and sick hours, holiday pay, and other benefits. Some apps let HR departments verify and run payroll and activate employee self-service portals.
HR staff can concentrate on more strategic tasks as employees submit time-off requests, modify benefits, and access payroll records themselves.
Growing Your Tech Stack
Successful businesses usually modify internal processes and tools as growth takes off. Expecting to do things the same way on a larger scale is more than unrealistic.
It can stop your expansion efforts from reaching their full potential. Adding software solutions such as project and employee management applications supports your company’s evolution. With these tools, your business will be better equipped to meet customers’ and employees’ expectations.
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