It is every small company’s dream to be on the Deloitte Fast 50. In 2014 these top 50 companies registered growth rates of over 10,000 percent at the top and 500 percent at a minimum.
It’s easy to see why these companies are put on a pedestal: what small company wouldn’t want to be growing at these phenomenal rates?
Start with growth in mind
So what problems do fast-growing companies face and what do successful ones do to overcome them? In 1983, the Harvard Business Review traced the five stages of small business growth. The article remains insightful today.
HBR’s research tells us that small business growth is a series of crises and evolutions. Technology helps successful firms navigate these fast-flowing cataracts of growth. By emulating the technology habits of the fastest growing companies, you can learn how to cope with such crises, before your company reaches them itself.
We’ve listed the top five technology habits of the fastest growing companies so you can get one step closer to repeating their success with your own business.
1) Mobile working
Flexibility is key to rapidly growing small businesses. Implementing technology that allows your staff to work remotely away from the office is a vital part of increasing you business’s flexibility.
According to a recent survey conducted by Palo Alto Software, 63 percent of small business owners plan on increasing the use of mobile devices in their business. With mobile use allowing on-the-go working, there’s clearly an increasing number of small businesses that plan to increase their working flexibility. Companies need to embrace VoIP telephony solutions, IT security systems and support contracts that assist flexible working.
2) Cloud-based tools
As Accenture concisely said, in their Business Technology Trends Report 2015;
‘Stop talking about cloud—the value is in using it’.
Why does the cloud have to be mentioned in every technology tips article for small companies? Because it’s essential for small companies.
Embracing the cloud holds three-fold benefits for companies eager to grow:
- It provides significant cost-savings.
- It replaces the need for internal infrastructure.
- It has built-in disaster-recovery systems.
3) Marketing automation
Having the ability to monitor website performance, create marketing workflows and schedule social media promotion is incredibly powerful. This automation delivers even more impact for small businesses, allowing them to create a powerful marketing system without overspending on expensive advertising or building big in-house marketing teams.
4) Sales acceleration
The ongoing growth of the sales acceleration market is coming about because more and more businesses are seeing the benefits of the process.
$12.8 billion was spent in North America on sales acceleration technology last year, indicating a clear trend in all company sizes moving towards revolutionising their sales process. That’s because practices such as sales workflows, CRM software, A/B testing and prioritisation can optimise the sales processes, ideal for a small business looking to grow with limited sales resources.
5) Unified communications
Implementing a unified communications system in your company allows your workers to keep in contact with each other, and with their clients, easily through all devices. This kind of flexible collaboration and communication isn’t just for the big companies anymore. With the increasing trend of anywhere working amongst small business employees, having a unified communication system is now important across all business sizes.
Get ahead of the curve
With the right tools, small companies can ease themselves through the continual crises they face.
However, more than any technology trend listed, small businesses can benefit most from innovation. Practice constant self-evaluation with your business and encourage company-wide innovation, and you’ll set your business on course for rapid growth.