If you consider technology a necessary evil instead of a tool that can propel your business forward, this information from Cards Technology founder and CEO Sam Card will give you the information you need to break through growth barriers.
Q: What are some of the ways technology helps small- and medium-sized businesses grow?
Sam Card: At some point, every business hits a ceiling with the number of customers they can serve, the revenue they can earn or the number of employees they can bring on board. Technology can help businesses burst through that ceiling.
You can increase productivity with cloud technology like Office 365 and by automating certain functions within your business. Also, new software can provide you with specific metrics and other information so you can make better-informed decisions.
Q. Can technology give businesses a competitive advantage?
Sam Card: Yes! Different software has different capabilities businesses can leverage to increase their competitiveness. Also, making sure your technology is supported by a responsive IT team provides a consistent level of uptime, so you definitely have an advantage over competitors who might experience frequent downtime because of poorly maintained technology. Many companies with properly designed and maintained IT systems can easily achieve true 99.9% uptime.
Q. How do you incorporate technology into business planning?
Sam Card: We frequently sit down with our clients to listen to them describe their business plan and goals are for the next couple of years. We also want to hear what they plan to accomplish in the short-term – 90 and 30 days – so that we can prioritize based on their needs and make technology recommendations to help them achieve their business goals.
Q. What advice do you have for business owners who aren’t sure how to incorporate technology into their business processes?
Sam Card: Our proven process is to start with your business goals and identify what you want to do. Then, it’s time to gather information so you can make the best decisions – technology is never going to solve all your problems but you want to make sure it isn’t going to create more. Talk to a good IT consultant; get opinions from people you know and trust. Go to an industry tradeshow and talk with the vendors, sit through their sales presentations.
The more information you have, the better your chances are of getting the right technology solutions for your business’s unique needs.