As a small business owner, organization can be a big headache. On a small team, there’s never enough capacity to track every job and process. But once you get your processes in order, everything else tends to run more efficiently.
Fortunately, you don’t have to do it alone. Technology can help you stay organized, find efficiency hacks, and push your small business to new heights. The key is choosing the right tools: No technology is one-size-fits-all, and small business owners often think that enterprise-oriented tools must be the best choice for them. Believe it or not, the ones built for smaller companies tend to be best suited to them.
If your small business is looking to get organized, here are seven key pieces of technology that can help.
1. Knowledge Base Software
In a small business, institutional knowledge is tough to build and easy to lose. From company handbooks to training processes to holiday traditions, there’s a lot to keep track of and share. Because everyone on the team needs access to those things, it’s critical to keep them all in one central location.
A knowledge management solution like Guru makes it easy to store company knowledge digitally. Knowledge management can transform a small business: Not only does it make document access easy, but it ensures continuity whenever a team member leaves. The more informed people are, the easier it is for them to work together.
2. Customer Relationship Management Software
For sales, marketing, and customer service teams, CRM software is critical. Not only does it help your team members optimize their schedules and prioritize tasks, but it ensures that the ball is never dropped with a customer or lead.
By helping your sales reps stay organized, they’re able to close more deals. On your customer service team, having information on past interactions at your fingertips builds stronger relationships with customers. Marketers can use CRM software to spot audience trends and guide their campaigns.
But a small business CRM can do more than just keep you organized. In addition, it can:
- Boost customer retention and loyalty
- Keep team members on the same page
- Streamline communication with customers
- Grow your business due to automation features
- Analyze sales data to improve your processes
3. Project Management Software
In every small business, projects have tight deadlines and clients have high expectations. With so many team members and deadlines involved, it can get overwhelming. This is where a project management tool comes in handy. It provides you with a visual of all tasks that need to be accomplished.
Teamwork is one such project management software that can help you organize tasks for a project and see what every member of the team is working on. Teamwork’s broad view provides your team a visual overview of an entire project. Use them to develop columns for defining processes, to view a task’s status, and to plan timelines. In short, a project management tool keeps all project information centralized and helps infuse more autonomy and efficiency into your team.
4. Instant Messaging Software
As your small business grows, expect communicating well to become more difficult. Emails get buried, and quick questions get ignored.
It’s not just you: On a larger team, there are simply more lines of communication involved. And as remote work becomes more common, communication will only become more difficult. It’s a lot tougher to explain an issue in writing than it is to simply pop over a cubicle.
Fortunately, there are tools that can help team members communicate quickly and efficiently. For example, Slack is a channel-based messaging platform built for businesses. Slack helps you stay organized by providing a different space for each type of conversation.
Channels are like meetings: You can set up channels for departments, company-wide announcements, non-work chatter, and more. Plus, Slack’s direct messaging system enables you to start one-on-one conversations for quick questions.
5. Payroll and Benefits Software
Seamless payroll and competitive benefits are key for attracting top talent, but they’re not always easy to administer. The good news is, you don’t have to do things the old-fashioned way simply because you’re a small company.
An online payroll and HR tool like OnPay can help your business run payroll, provide benefits, manage onboarding, deal with worker’s compensation claims, and more. OnPay’s interface is clean and easy to use, and it accommodates contractors as well as employees.
6. Content Scheduling Software
If your small business has a blog or social media — which you should — a content scheduling software is crucial for staying organized. By scheduling out content in advance, your team can save a lot of time.
Hootsuite is one of the most popular social media management tools. In Hootsuite, you can monitor and schedule posts on multiple social media channels. It can also help you monitor what people are saying about your business and respond instantly. Hootsuite Academy offers knowledge so that you can take full advantage of all the platform has to offer.
7. Learning Management Systems
Training new employees is a challenge at every small business. If you go about onboarding and training employees in a disorganized way, they’ll carry that expectation throughout their job. An LMS regiments the process, ensuring every employee gets the same instruction and experience.
A good option for small businesses is Tovuti. Tovuti’s LMS allows your business to:
- Build interactive courses in minutes, while incorporating PowerPoints, PDFs, and more.
- Auto-assign courses and invite participants to events, presentations, and live classrooms.
- Customize your interface with branding, colors, logos, and more.
- Incentivize learners through interactive content, gamification, and rewards.
- Utilize built-in virtual classrooms for spontaneous online learning sessions.
Don’t neglect your employees’ education and onboarding. An LMS software can make the process not only more organized, but more enjoyable and valuable.
Organization can make or break a small business. When your business operates in a more organized fashion, it’s able to get more done, keep the team happier, and unlock that next stage of growth. If you’re not prioritizing organization, there’s no time like the present to get started.