Your business’ back office is where the magic happens. While customers and clients interact with your front-facing brand, the back office handles all the data, transactions, processes, and actions that actually enable your enterprise to function. As such, it’s important to ensure the systems that power your back office are up to the task of keeping up with your growth.
There are two mentalities small businesses need to adapt as they assess back office operations. First, is “think big to grow big” and second is to “always seek synergy.” In short, small businesses should re-tool systems so that they grow into them, and so that they all work together.
Here’s a look at some of the prime considerations to keep in mind as you seek to make over your own back office and grow beyond your current bounds.
Hire Digitally Savvy Talent to Overhaul the Back Office
Virtually every system of the back office is digital these days, from accounting and transaction software to sales pipelines and CRMs. But it’s not enough to simply have these systems: it’s also important to have a team that knows how to set up and use them. Businesses need to hire individuals who are comfortable in and adept at navigating a tech-driven world, ready to embrace new tech solutions.
There are opportunities to hire tech-savvy individuals across operations. That’s because tech enablement is a skill that can underlie any professional focus. You can have a digitally inclined HR manager, a tech-savvy accountant, and a sales manager that’s adept at using digital tools. Upskill your team and hire talent that’s not just good at what they do—they also need to embrace a digital way of doing it.
An Integrated Tech Stack is a Must-Have
With so much of the back office powered by tech, the question of synergy needs to be central to orchestration. Do you have mechanisms in place for ensuring your many platforms, programs, and services can communicate with one another? Synergy is crucial in generating broad company insights, which means connecting the dots to create synergies:
- A digital payments platform that connects to accounting software
- Accounting software that connects to sales and lead-generation platforms
- Sales platforms that sync up with marketing tools and services
- Marketing tools that interface with channel-specific services
In remodelling your back office for growth, carefully build out a tech stack that delivers ubiquitous insights. Data can’t exist in silos. Integrating the tech stack will solve problems, provide insights, and enable growth by unifying data to power better planning and decision-making.
It’s Time to Ditch Bank Runs and Paperwork
Transactions and banking are a big part of what happens in the back office, and many small businesses are still stuck in antiquated habits. Taking your deposit to the bank or standing in line to execute a wire transfer isn’t productive for the company. Moreover, trying to maintain a physical paper trail is a bygone way of recordkeeping in the current digital age.
Using their banking practices as a model, businesses should seek to shift into digital habits wherever it makes sense. The analog way of doing things might’ve worked for a small business just starting out, but it’s unlikely to work for one that’s growing bigger. “Think big and grow big.” Ditch the bank runs and paperwork for modern solutions like a digital payments platform and digital record keeping practices.
Focus on Data Transparency, Integrity, and Accessibility
Digitizing across the board—and hiring employees with digital savvy—leads to one all-important consideration: accessibility. Small businesses need to embrace the business cloud concept in a way that makes data accessible to those that need it, in the capacity they need it. Whether it’s sales data, transaction data, access to client SLAs or reference to the company’s internal SOPs, employees should know exactly where to get the data they need.
Transparency and integrity are also key here. Your organization needs to trust the data it’s using. That means knowing where it came from, the context surrounding it, and the relevancy of its insights. As small businesses create systems for gathering and leveraging data, they also need to build in processes and protocols for maintaining the insights they rely on to drive growth.
Redesign With High-Level Company Goals in Mind
Don’t just make changes to make changes. The best way to approach a back office makeover is through the lens of company goals and expectations. What are you trying to achieve and what needs to change to enable that vision? Align talent, tech and approach behind high-level company goals to give purpose to every upgrade, change and investment you make.
Ultimately, a small business’ back office will be an ever-changing endeavour. Some foundational systems will stay the same; however, new tech and new needs will prompt demand for new solutions. To grow and scale requires a willingness to change. Start by laying the groundwork for your small business’ growth via a back office that’s tech-focused, architected and operated by digitally savvy professionals who are all aligned on the company’s goals.
Ready for a back office maker over? Veem can help get you started. Schedule a demo today!