- Forward Thinking
Leverage the technologies to work remotely for small startups with less investment.
As you get involved in the business development you are going to talk some people and eventually you will feel to make new connection, tend to increase your contacts, arranging meetings and presentation. When you speak to new people, the first thing people may ask do you have your website, presentations and some information to share. If your connections are in different cities or abroad, everyone use to have difficulties and questions around sharing information and how do we meet face to face.
Small organisations and Startups may also have challenges of taking care of documentation related to accounting, invoicing and expenses management etc. These all are resulting to stressful activities for the small startups and eventually creates an additional cost for managing overheads.
I thought to share few experiences that may help other who wanted to work cost effectively for their start-ups during on weekend or remote project work assignment or any other task such as charity, event planning, exhibition etc. where you can be productive during your holidays season without disturbing your personal commitments. Obviously, you are going to be managing your priorities of tasks as well.
There are following inclusive top 10 to-do things list that can help to increase productivity of business processes to the next level.
- Website and email domain
Costs usually start at around £2, but can go up to nearly £100, depending on the type of domain extension you want. Don’t worry – there are virtually endless domain variations available like .NET, .BIZ or .CO instead of just .CO.UK or .COM, which may actually end up being a cheaper option. You can search for, and register, your domain name at a web hosting company, such as https://www.register.com/, www.fasthosts.com, Namesco or GoDaddy.
Sources of building WebPage by yourself and hosting – Wix, Weebly, GoDaddy, MoonFruit, SiteBuilder, Square Space, BestWebHosting. There are many free themes available online and build a website using drag and drop feature. Example: themeforest, Elementor, PageBuilder etc
- Cloud shared storage
Free cloud storage and information sharing by Google drive, Box, Dropbox, OneDrive. Google Sheet is a perfect example for requirement gathering, updating record database, shared and collaborative work. They all provide some free storage to keep your all documents online. You can categorize different cloud server data for different types for documentation.
Automated use of some artificial intelligence applets technology integration can add a boost-up in your business process. Example of apps including iFittt, zapier, zoho, google, MS 365 office forms, jotform etc are freely available to automate some manual / regular day to day business process. Example: Gmail document rule of certain subject directly move to particular drive automatically, and auto response to customers with selected attachment of guide etc.
- Online Conference / Live meeting tool
Online meeting takes an important role whenever meeting with your client. With growing technologies, you can almost avoid cost of travelling unless if there is specific requirement. Today we have many free cloud meeting applications including google talk hangouts, Skype for personal or 365business , JoinMe, Zoom cloud meeting, Zoho, Amazon AWS (Amazon chime) etc.
- Online Cloud Accounting, Invoicing, Expense manger and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tools
There are many free tools available for startups and small business to take advantage of all functions business including Book-keeping, Accounting, Invoicing, Expense, Receipt, CRM, payroll etc that are fully automated.
- Meeting rooms network
Sometime, you may need to meet face to face with client or an interview. You can find nearby any locations and see many numbers of virtual meeting / office club providers such as Regus, WeWork and BasePoint etc. Always select the one, that has large network of offices and can provide featured membership access to go any business branch and business lounge. Some bank and credit card companies like Virgin or MBNA also give offer to join meeting room club.
For large networking or training event, you can speak to local community hall or library must have conference room. They can charge hourly amount to a minimum and can save lot of money avoiding larger hotels rooms.
- Social media and other collaborated networking sites
We are in generation surrounded by GenY-age people. Growing digitally and being a social entrepreneur is a wise decision. I usually not found of these but today I am on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google+ etc.
You can grow your social presence and have smart work ideas to tap into startups and leverage these resources to make your time productive. To addon to current digital media shares, you can take advantages of these free apps / tools example including Phonto, Canva, Layout, Piccollage, Fotor, RiPl, Pixabay, Desygner etc.
- Source of Finance
In todays’ age, people can leverage many online peer to peer network (crowd funding) to source initial finance if you are in difficulties of getting credit may be because of not good score. You can also check out some new credit card balance / money transfer option.
- Virtual Landline or VOIP phone
It’s an important to register your business with landline number. There are numbers available either based on local, regional or national code or toll-free. If you are working remotely or from home or always travelling, its better to have VoIp phone on you mobile. There are many service providers gives deals like EE, Vonage, Virtual Landline, Amazon AWS, Skype VoiP (call). You can try using free minutes by Amazon AWS Free Tier or cheapest cost from VirtualLandline from buzzConnect.
- e-signing / contract documentation / secretarial compliances
There are situations, where we need to get signed documents of your contract from client. Please check first your respective trade practices or contact us for special requirements for any particular industry. In UK most of the business and processes are accepting digital of e-sign. There are many paid product or app like adobe e-sign, Signable and DocuSign etc. However, to start with there are some free app like DocHub or with fraction PAYG cost per digital envelop you can use Signable.
For Company secretarial compliance, again there are cloud based WebApps like informDirect or madesimple.
- Time Tracking and Project Management
There are many free applications that provides time tracking and project management for 1 to 10 users. In future, if project team grows, then service providers can discuss custom pricing according to type of business. Example including: Toggl, Hours, Mavenlink etc
- Payment gateway / Direct Debit collection
If you have monthly service contract with client, then its recommended to use GoCardLess.
Based on your category of startups business, we have relevant apps for recommendation. We provide expert Accounting, Tax and Start-up mentoring services included with all FREE recommended apps to increase your business productivity to the next level. You can book a FREE start-up consultation appointment with us, we are happy to help you.
I welcome you all to add points in comments whatever works for you so that other small business Entrepreneurs can be benefited. I can keep updating the list later. You can follow me on my blog or news, where will find such articles.