When it comes to efficiency for your small business, being at the forefront and not at the end of the line proves important.
Today’s consumers want to deal with small businesses that are trailblazers, not following everyone else.
With that in mind, is it time for you to open up a more efficient workplace?
Review and Revise
In order for your small business to be as efficient as it possibly can be, it is important to review and revise (when necessary) any practices around the office where it appears you are falling behind.
For starters, if you are in the process of or have recently chosen to implement web based systems, it is crucial that you know your online activities are as efficient and safe as possible.
So why might you want to be a more web-focused small business, eliminating much or all of the paper trail in the process?
While there are a number of reasons, first and foremost, doing away with the paper trail allows you and the customer to have a cleaner, more precise means of doing business together.
If you run a medical practice, think about all the paperwork you have accumulated over the years, even if your business has only been around for less than a decade. Yes, many such practices still use paper (and not technology) when it comes to tracking patient data, but they are becoming few and far between.
For those small businesses choosing to do more business online, they not only condense the accumulations of mounds and mounds of paper in their offices, but they can now turn to online means to monitor their customers. Instead of literally paging through paper after paper, all the information can be neatly and nicely displayed on a computer screen.
Flexibility Comes with Technology
Another benefit for going the web-focused route is availability to view documents literally anywhere in the world where there is a computer available.
Whether you run a medical practice or myriad of other small businesses, you know that the work day doesn’t always revolve around the standard 9 to 5 format. That being the case, having access to your workplace documents and folders at any portion of the day can prove beneficial.
With that flexibility also means responsibility, so don’t take using the web for granted.
If you are going online somewhat or totally with your small business practices, it is important to practice security.
While paper documents can be lost and/or stolen, they also can be compromised if there is a fire, flood, or other natural disaster taking place in your office. When that happens, you could lose mounds of important customer and company financial data.
Instead of putting yourself and your company at risk for that, having all pertinent documentation online makes so much more sense.
Speaking of items that are pertinent, make sure you always emphasize patient/client privacy with your employees.
Even though the bulk of employees in small companies nationwide are hard-working and trustworthy, there have been documented cases of workers stealing financial and other personal customer and/or company information over the years. When this occurs, both the customers and the company are put in compromising positions.
So that you can lessen the odds of such problems occurring within your small business, be sure to:
- Stress importance of customer privacy – Employees can never be told enough times how important customer privacy truly is. If a customer/patient loses faith in your ability to protect their personal/financial information, you could lose them permanently;
- Review your web based practices – Always be looking to improve your web based practices, not weaken them or let them become stagnant. As great as the web is for so many things, it seems like it is almost always changing in one regard or another, so adapt with it;
- Look to be even more efficient – Finally, how can your workplace become even more efficient when it comes to satisfying the needs and wants of your customers? Do periodic reviews (including customer surveys) to see what is and is not working in our workplace. Remember, the customers keep you in business, so satisfying them should always be your top priority.
About the Author: Dave Thomas covers small business topics on the web.