5 Tech Tips for Small Businesses in 2022
Small business owners will be looking for IT and tech advice to boost productivity and profits in 2022. Technology has developed significantly in the past 18 months, specifically the tech businesses have maintained operations during the pandemic. Small Business Owners will be looking at how they can use this newfound knowledge to drive their small business into profitability. Here’s what we’ve learned about business tech since the advent of the pandemic that you can put into practice in your firm for 2022.
IT & Telecoms
First, let’s take a look at the IT and telecoms sectors. Small businesses have quickly adopted cloud storage and services and hosted VoIP solutions for their communication needs. This is because such technologies offer several benefits over traditional on-premise systems. Cloud storage, for example, allows businesses to access their data from any device or location with an internet connection, making it perfect for working remotely.
Hosted VoIP services provide a similar level of flexibility and cost savings compared to traditional landline phone systems. These cloud-based phone systems give your team the flexibility to log in and receive work calls from any location or device. It also gives your business the ability to limitlessly scale up how many phones your business can run on one line. Read our blog on Internet Requirements for VoIP if you’d like to learn more.
At iceConnect, we offer a wide range of VoIP telecom solutions for small and medium-sized businesses in London and across the UK. If you’d like to learn more about how our phone systems can benefit your company message us today.
Project Management Software
Small businesses can benefit from using business-focused apps such as Slack, Asana, Trello and Microsoft Planner to improve communication and collaboration between team members.
Slack is a collaboration platform that brings all your communication together in one place. It’s real-time messaging, archiving and search for modern teams. Slack also has many bolt-on apps that can improve its functionality for your specific purpose. For example, we use the Microsoft One Drive app to enable our team to share files inside the programme. There are even simpler apps such as birthday bots to remind you of birthdays and Poll apps to help you get a group decision on a topic. We usually use it when choosing which take-away to order for lunch, which previously was a never-ending conversation 🙂
Asana does not seek to replace email or traditional management tools like spreadsheets, whiteboards, file servers or meeting rooms etc. but aims to help teams manage tasks online with greater productivity. It supports multiple workflows such as the Kanban board style for managing projects achieved through drag and drop of task cards. The card can be moved around between lists depending on the status of the tasks, i.e. dragging it from the Backlog to the Doing list until it is complete, at which point it can be archived or deleted.
Trello is a collaboration tool that organises your projects into boards. In one glance, Trello tells you what’s being worked on, who’s working on what, and where something is in a process.
Users can attach files from Dropbox, Google Drive or upload straight from your computer to any card with just one click. This makes it faster and easier to incorporate feedback on designs and assets early on in a project instead of sending multiple emails or messages back and forth. Trello also has a robust extension system that makes it easy for users to integrate Trello with tools your staff may already be using. It’s the only collaboration tool with this integration level with leading business tools. This collaborative capacity makes it my personal favourite project management tool. In addition, Trello is available across all desktop and mobile devices.
Microsoft Planner is a new app available on iOS, Android, and Windows 10+ devices that complements Office 365 Groups for managing teamwork. With Planner, anyone can easily create new plans, organise and assign tasks, set due dates and update the status of any project in real time. Microsoft Planner’s visual dashboards and email notifications help keep everyone informed on the overall progress of their initiative. In layman’s terms, Microsoft Planner is an attempt to copy Trello. Trello on its own is a better software tool than Microsoft Planner, but what makes Microsoft Planner appealing is that it is fully built into the office 365 ecosystem. Its functions seamlessly with Outlook, Calendar, Microsoft Word, Excel, and other applications.
Advances in Remote Working
It turns out that remote working is at least as productive as having your employees work from the office. Employees tend to like working from home at least some of the time. In order for your workforce to work from home in a functional productive manner, they need to have the necessary hardware and software tech set up at their homes. The project management applications mentioned earlier can real a real breakthrough for your team to boost communication and productivity of your new virtual office setup.
Much of his tech existed before the pandemic, but far more firms have picked up platforms such as Zoom and Slack since March 2021. Communications technology has been a considerable boon for firms forced to work remotely, but now you’re returning to the office, keeping these channels open will remain an essential source of collaboration.
At the same time as getting your existing employees hooked up to communication apps and platforms, you should also begin considering how you can bring in automation technology that’ll fundamentally change your workforce. In this respect, this might mean losing staff, but the efficiency savings automation tech can generate mean you have little choice if you wish to remain competitive.
Work distribution AI can help you manage workflows, and logistics automation can help you efficiently get products from A to B. examples of AI automation in the supply-chain industry include:
In the supply chain industry AI software can automate mapping improvements in warehouses. This means staff travel time to specific products in warehouses is continuously optimised, reducing warehouse picking times.
Automated Workforce Planning
AI Software can now predict high volume times of the year and plan your workforce accordingly. Previously this task had to be done by an individual with skills and experience in that particular business. This task can now be completed automatically based on actual data rather than hunches.
As a small business owner, you’re always looking for ways to make your business more efficient and profitable. One way to do this is through the use of automation technology. Automation can help you take care of many tasks that were once done manually, freeing up your employees to work on more critical tasks.
The best way to find out which automation technologies are right for your business is to do your research and talk to the experts here at iceConnect. Many software solutions are available, so it’s essential to find the right one for your specific needs. Automation can help you take your business to the next level, so don’t hesitate to explore all of your options, contact us today
Expert IT Advice
To understand what will make your business thrive in 2022, it is sometimes helpful to turn to experts in the field. That’s why many small businesses bring in managed IT services professionals to help them adjust and add to their tech stack.
Hiring a technology consultant can help you improve your businesses technology and digital back office. They can provide support and expertise to help you determine what needs to be changed. Having these experts on board can help you realise what your firm needs to do to manage its technology correctly. They can also provide top-level support for maintaining your systems and securing your data.
If you want to improve your business in 2022, it’s essential that you start implementing automation and project management technology today. This technology will help take care of many tasks so your employees can focus on the things they do best. If you need help figuring out which software solutions are right for your business or how to go about automating certain areas of work, don’t hesitate to reach out and ask our experts here at iceConnect. Our team is ready and waiting to provide support with all aspects of automation technology, contact us now!