Business Finances

The Technology Your Small Business Needs to Succeed

When it comes to owning your own business, you have to spend money to make money. Any entrepreneur who has struck out on his own can attest that the outset equipement and technological costs are overwhelming; so overwhelming, in fact, that some small business owners may feel tempted to cut corners. Of course you can’t avoid writing a check for a down payment on real estate for your storefront or refrigerators for your cafe, but spending additional money on operational tasks is unnecessary, right?

The type of technology you need for your small business will depend heavily on your specific situation. For example, if you work at home, you may not require much more than unlimited satellite internet service and a smartphone, but if you have a big office with plenty of employees coming and going, your approach to technology is going to be quite different. Regardless of the size and scale of your business, there are some things that will be non-negotiable for operating your business.

It’s true that small business owners have managed their own books and payrolls in the past, but often at the expense of other crucial management responsibilities. Along with the exhilaration of becoming your own boss for the first time comes the anxiety of proving yourself to your community; many first-time business owners take on a “do it all” attitude in an attempt to quell any suspicions (real or imagined) that they don’t have what it takes to be successful on Main Street. But here’s a bit of Entrepreneurial 101 advice: building a successful company takes a village — of both people and technological resources. If you want your business to thrive, you have to know when to ask for help and when to dip into your business’s savings for resources that will save your sanity and time.

Here are a few extra resources designed to make your life easier and your day-to-day operations more streamlined:

Payroll Management

Depending on the nature of your business, you may be bringing in multiple new employees all at once. On top of marketing your company’s arrival and solidifying your customer service or production processes, managing the the paychecks and general well-being of your new employees is time consuming. Rather than forcing yourself to manually enter individual hours and process bi-weekly pay, why not save yourself the headache and let an automated system take care of your team’s salaries for you?

Platforms like SquareUp are designed to make payroll management as efficient as possible. Working in tandem with Square’s point-of-sale software, the platform is synchronized to allow employees to clock in and out directly on Square’s sales platform or app. From there, each employee’s hours are automatically tallied without any dispute. Employees are also given access to the platform to review their hours and update their own W-4 forms.

Accounting Software

Nobody launched a business because they’re excited about the prospect of managing their own books — that’s just a necessary evil in the life of an entrepreneur. But the good news is that you don’t have to go it alone.

Accounting software, like Intuit Quickbooks, allows business owners to manage every aspect of their finances in one centralized location. Need to keep track of monthly business expenses? Quickbooks can take care of that. Need to clear out invoices and outstanding payments? Intuit can send you automatic reminders so you never fall behind.

Running a successful small business entails organizing what can feel like a million different payment loans, subscriptions, and invoices; attempting to stay ahead of your finances without any support is often the culprit behind financial disputes and late payments. Set yourself up for success by getting support.

Cyber-Security

Regardless of whether your business manages ecommerce orders or serves up green juices and smoothies to city dwellers, there are at least a few components of your company that are reliant on online orders, accounts, and transactions. Buying a cyber security bundle will not only protect your own financial information from potential hackers, but it could also protect the financial identities of your customers who have used credit cards or mobile banking accounts to pay for your services.

Solutions like ESET offer a variety of bundles tailored to support your specific security needs. From maintaining vigilance among employees who may be logging into your systems remotely to managing your server’s vulnerabilities, cyber-security software offers extra precaution and assurance.

Small business success is not guaranteed; in fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 20 percent of new businesses fail within their first year. While entrepreneurs cannot control the market or audience responses, what they can control is management of day-to-day operations. Only businesses with strong operations and managerial systems can really expect to thrive. By paying for these additional resources at the beginning of your organization’s life, you’ll set yourself up for long-term success.

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