The cloud is revolutionizing business but old ways of working can die hard. Test yourself against these three crucial warning signs to see if it’s time to make the change.
We need to talk. The multiple products and apps you use to manage your customer data is very likely holding back the growth of your business.
Sure, these products and apps may be useful tools for managing and collaborating on sales, financial and customer information, but as your business expands, your needs will become more complex.
Like the young family that outgrows their first home, a time will come when your business needs to move key financial and customer information and into a place that everyone can securely access anytime, anywhere.
Only then will you and your team be able to focus on what is important: delighting customers and growing your business.
Cloud accounting and invoicing business Sage One tells us the three warning signs you must watch out for if you want to discover when it makes sense to move your customer and financial information to a new home.
Warning sign 1: Time wasting
No manager wants to make key business decisions based on limited or out-of-date information, and yet many managers spend hours examining financial and sales information presented via different products and apps.
Using multiple products and apps restricts the ability of sales and financial teams to update information and connect with each other, and it also introduces more potential for error into how your team works.
For example, with no central place to store this information, individuals or teams report their information separately and may even base their reports on out-of-date information.
This disjointed workflow makes it harder for you to pull together the information you need to make informed management decisions about the future of your company.
Warning sign 2: Working on the wrong things
The nature of using multiple products and apps and storing customer information in many places means your team must input key account information in many different places.
Here’s the problem: This way of working takes a significant amount of time at the end of a month or quarter; and many sales and financial teams say this is time they could better spend answering sales queries, discussing ideas for new sales promotions or preparing the accounts of key clients.
If your team is spending time manually inputting information like expenses or on other administrative tasks, your business is wasting valuable billable hours on unproductive tasks.
Can you afford to let the best members of your team spend their day on unproductive tasks?
Warning sign 3: Struggling to collaborate
As the manager of a growing business, you go out of your way to address inefficient business processes, but have you considered the way your team shares customer information with each other?
For example, a legal firm may use a product to compile financial data related to their clients and accounts receivable. And employees of this legal firm may use another app to collaborate on current information throughout their working day.
This means various employees are working on and making changes to multiple versions of customer information in different places.
Even if these employees avoid making mistakes and remember to update each product or app, sharing the latest customer information internally is still a big challenge for your team.
Working with multiple versions of customer information is an inefficient way of collaborating, and it isn’t the way of today’s growing businesses.
So what’s the solution?
It’s time to find a new home for your business critical customer information.
If you move sales and accounting information from the many different apps and products your company uses and into a cloud-based accounting solution such as Sage One, you will reduce business errors and increase the productivity of your teams.
You will also protect key business data and ensure sales and accounting teams collaborate on the latest information. And you’ll have a solution that scales up with your growing business.
Best of all?
Bringing the back-office and the front-office together will give you the peace of mind that comes with making business decisions based on the latest information.
Like the family that moved from a small starter home to a larger house, after your company uses a cloud-based accounting solution, you will look back on the days your business lived with just disconnected customer data and wonder how you managed.