Make Smart Technology a Strategy

Are you a typical small business owner? Do you constantly defer to others – perhaps a savvy young employee – when it comes to technology? Do you often find yourself saying the words: “I’m just not very technical”?

It’s time to stop saying that.

Embracing technology

You yourself must be ready to explore new technologies. There are so many time-saving apps, social networking tools and online project management platforms out there. 

So it’s time to stop thinking of these tools as fun gadgets and instead start building them into the core of your workflow. (You can bet that your competition will, if they haven’t already.) By placing new tech at the center of your business practices, your efficiency and communication will greatly improve, company-wide. 

Tools for better teams

For instance, I’m the CEO of Veltig, which is a rapidly growing Salesforce practice. Cloud computing is so central to our business, we always try to hire really smart people who know Salesforce, whenever possible.

Once they’re hired, we want to keep them. One of my most important responsibilities is to retain employees by building a great culture and having a great employee experience. A good experience doesn’t just mean free snacks and great PTO. It means giving them the tools to do their jobs better, with less frustration.

When I joined a year ago I quickly realized we had too many disparate systems and spreadsheets in the back office. It drove me crazy when I found myself wasting time hunting for information across numerous systems and I knew it must be driving our new hires crazy as well.

For example, we managed our HR records and PTO on manual spreadsheets and then used Dropbox to upload and share them. (Our founder even entered time off into our payroll system by hand!) Sure, some of those processes and tools are free and that can be alluring to a cost-conscious business owner.

But “free” quickly becomes expensive when invaluable time is wasted on tasks that should be automated. That time is much better spent improving operations and services. Our consultants grew frustrated when the systems designed to help them were actually eroding their productivity.

As our team continued to grow, the processes that had served us well in the past proved too manual or error prone. Far too many emails were flying around – and as a result some occasionally slipped through the cracks which negatively impacted customer and employee satisfaction.

Our onboarding process was also very manual and inefficient. This was not the first impression we wanted to create especially as we began to hire more people from beyond our network.

Something had to change

So we moved to Sage HR & Payroll and things began to improve in a big, time-freeing way. Now we really started to enjoy the benefits of seamless integration & enhanced automation. Paid time off is now managed completely online. Time off requests are submitted and approved online.

Every member of the team can even see who is off and for how long – all on a simple, intuitive dashboard. Sure, this sounds basic but it was a huge improvement over a calendar which had too many colors on it to make sense. Employees now can view all of their payroll and HR information online anytime anywhere.

Our onboarding experience for new hires is now completely automated and integrated with payroll. As an added bonus, I no longer have to track the constant changes in labor regulations like ACH or state laws. Sage manages that complexity for me.

Putting this kind of technology in place has allowed me to spend less time on frustrating admin tasks and more time with the most important aspects of my job: our employees and our customers.