As business becomes more mobile and global, business owners face tough decisions about how to operate more effectively, efficiently, and practically.
Business owners must make hard choices on how to streamline operations while at the same time being able to collaborate with clients and staff members wherever they might be and whenever they might need to get things done.
There are so many options about how to incorporate the latest technology into their businesses.Yet, some of the biggest concerns facing businesses are how to save time and money while achieving these results.
The first tip for businesses to be virtually virtual, according to the team at Citrix, a cloud company that enables mobile work styles- empowering people to work and collaborate from anywhere securely, is:
#1 Adopt cloud computing tools.
With cloud-based computing tools you begin by saving your most valuable resource, your time, and you can collaborate with clients and staff members from anywhere.
You don't have to physically be there to share this information and get work done.
Peter Puglisi of Bookkeeping CPAs now runs his business 100% remotely. With 70% of his clients remote, Peter found himself losing billable time on travel and gas.
For efficiency, Peter adopted cloud apps to meet and exchange files from anywhere-whether at his home office in New York or his winter retreat in Florida.
Tip#2 Don't let location limit your talent pool.
The workforce may be more mobile than ever before, but it still takes a cohesive team to move an organization forward.
When you physically can't be with your team because they are the other side of town or they're on the other side of the world, you can use a tool to virtually keep your team close by leveraging the power of video conferencing with "Go To Meeting."
Tip#3: Structure your collaboration
As a best-practice recommendation, the Citrix team recommends you structure your collaboration around two things- actions and outcomes.
Keep business momentum and accountability by adopting a project management solution like Podio. A great example of a company using Podio is Cirque Du Soleil.
Podio has become the main hub where all projects are managed by the Cirque Du Soleil team.
Everyone at Cirque Du Soleil from graphic designers to executive can request and follow the progress of creative jobs in one place and on any device.
Tip#4 When it comes to data backup, do your homework.
There are services that can backup data and some are free. Evaluate what you are getting for nothing.Make informed decisions based on your company needs.
Don't skimp on protecting your essential business records-especially if you operate in a regulated industry including legal, finance, insurance, healthcare, and real estate.
Remember that laws are not blind to company size. A good example we can share comes from our client, Mission Benefits, an insurance firm that uses ShareFile to securely store, sync, and exchange medical forms with clients.
In addition, using ShareFile allows Mission Benefits to maintain a paperless office.
The company's ShareFile space online is branded with their logo and colors which helps clients feel that ShareFile is an extension of the business they already know and trust.
Go back to Tip #3 and evaluate how you handle the backup of your data with the action and outcomes in mind and do your homework before you decide
Tip#5 Leave your desktop at your desk.
A laptop will be lighter and more portable than your desktop pc, but much larger and heavier to carry around on a continual basis than most of today's sleek mobile devices.
With this in mind, more and more businesses are using solutions like GoToMyPC to work from their clients' office , to work at home, or to work on the road.
When using GoToMyPC, the businesses know they will still have access to all of their applications, software, and files.
Dennis Stanton has been able to manage the point-of-sale system for his small business, The Swedish Bakery, from anywhere in the world, including on board his last Caribbean cruise.
Tip#6 Don't Sweat IT.
Businesses need to stay up and running. With GoToAssist, Sundance Beach troubleshoots issues that arise in retail stores from anywhere and ensures maximum uptime for their business.