Management tips

6 tips to improve the management of your SMB

Are you ready to see your business grow and evolve? In this step of your business path, you will likely benefit from a revision of your various management tools and procedures.

After all, if your business evolves, your tools and techniques should evolve at the same time and adapt to your changing needs. These updates of your daily processes will enable you to improve the management of your business and favour its growth for the coming years.

01 Choose the right management tools

At first glance, Excel may appear to be the right choice to manage your accounting. Given its low cost and familiar interface, it is the tool that many new entrepreneurs choose. But don’t be fooled, choosing a spreadsheet is not a good business decision.

The benefits of this tool are very limited when it comes to managing your business’s accounting. For example, tax standards and accounting practices change and an accounting program can adapt to these changes, whereas Excel cannot. There are also fewer risks of error with a software program that does not allow you to use the same invoice number twice, or make an entry that does not balance. For these reasons, Excel is rarely the best option.

With the right software, you will discover several solutions that Excel simply cannot offer you, which will make your accounting management easier and greatly limit the risk of errors.

02 Do the maximum to avoid inventory errors

If using Excel can cause all sorts of problems for your accounting, it can do the same for your inventory. We have nothing against Excel. In fact, it is a very useful general tool. But like any general tool, for specific uses like inventory management, it doesn’t even come close to a specialized tool designed specifically for this task.

Are you still using an Excel file to manage your inventory? If so, don't worry, you're not alone. It is one of the 5 inventory management mistakes that we still see all too often.

Simple and low-cost methods can be implemented in order to remain efficient and avoid losses and mistakes as much as possible:

  • A good SKU system.
  • Appropriate procedures for counting merchandise received.
  • An inventory management system adapted to the needs of your business.
  • Etc.

Not only will sound management of your inventory help you limit mistakes and losses, it will also protect your revenues by avoiding stock outs.

03 Optimize your invoicing: a step that pays off quickly

Your customers don't always pay their invoices on time? There are no miracle solutions, but you can favour the rapid payment of your invoices by implementing measures to invoice more efficiently.

With a good billing process, you will be able to create and send your invoices faster, which means you will also be paid faster. You can reduce late fund entries as much as possible by using appropriate practices: clearly establish your terms of payment with your customers, properly number your invoices, perform a strict follow-up, etc.

04 Make full use of your accounting software (and recognize when it is time to change it)

You've acquired accounting software? Don't let it sit there!

Nowadays, even the simplest accounting software is loaded with technology that aims to facilitate, accelerate and solidify your management processes. For example, a number of your accounting operations can be automated. Make sure you have a good understanding of how your software works in order to use it to its full potential!

Your business and your management needs will evolve over time and, eventually, the software that you chose when you started out may no longer be appropriate. It is important to keep up-to-date in order not to hinder your operations.

The speed of your software, ease of use and its technological limits are a few of the signs to watch for to know when it is time to replace your management software.

05 Improve your sales and communications with your customers by using a CRM

The relationships that you maintain with your customers define your business. These relationships must remain a priority throughout the evolution of your business and remain at the heart of your daily operations. Why?

You probably have different types of customers who have different types of needs and expectations compared to the service that you offer them. Manually managing all data related to your customers is an impossible mission.

Good customer relationship management involves keeping the files of all your customers up-to-date (from the oldest to the most recent), creating and sending personalized communications, managing an events calendar, following up during or after a transaction, and more.

That is true for your current customers, but it is just as true for your potential customers: the quality of the follow-up that you perform with your prospects can make all the difference between losing a sale and gaining a sale.

Is it really possible to perform all these tasks on a regular basis? The answer is yes. If you have superpowers. Or, better yet, by using the closest thing to a superpower to manage customer relationships: a CRM program.

Customer relationship management (or CRM) programs are among the essential tools for businesses of all sizes. A good CRM will allow you to keep your data up-to-date and even make sales projections. Implementing a CRM is definitely one of the best decisions that you can make for your business.

06 Benefit from mobile technologies

The emergence of mobile technologies has benefited several business fields. Mobile technologies can help you increase your productivity, stay in contact with your team and follow up in real time when performing various operations remotely.

Often presented as an application, mobile technology can help you save paper by accelerating your billing and payment process, and by facilitating management of your inventory. For example, mobile applications already greatly facilitate the work of technicians on the road and have a positive impact on the profitability of businesses that use these new technologies. Once you try it, you will no longer be able to do without it.

Room for improvement

For each of your business processes, there is a solution that can lighten your workload while making you more efficient. It is therefore important to take the time to find solutions that meet your needs and to reassess their effectiveness throughout your career. Keep in mind that the business needs you have when you start out will no longer be the same a few months or a few years later.

The management techniques and tools that you choose in each step of your path will help you to constantly improve the management of your SMB and will likely have a major impact on the success of your business.

About Acomba

As developers of accounting and management software programs, each day we help more than 40,000 Canadian SMBs manage the essential aspects of their operations.

Whether you are in the start-up phase or growing fast, we would like to work with you by providing you with solutions adapted to your reality and which will help you reap the maximum benefit from your entrepreneurial project.

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Le blogue Acomba regorge d'articles sur les affaires, les TI et la gestion d’entreprise.
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