As companies access higher market penetration and more customers, they face both a challenge and an opportunity. On one hand, these companies can expand into new locations and grow their business. But, on the other hand, they will have to improve their back-office efficiency, as well as keep a watchful eye on their sales channels, while continuing to ensure a high level of service that their customers are used to.
To take full advantage of this situation, fast-growing companies need to evaluate and determine whether their existing business applications – in regards to sales, accounting, service and other such functions – will effectively support this growth. It applies mostly to companies that have started with standalone applications and now have to determine whether to upgrade their systems to a more flexible platform.
Cloud computing and cloud customization sit comfortably at the top, as an attractive option for both small businesses and larger enterprises, as they offer a low cost for entry, as well as a faster marketing time, compared to traditional business software.
Embracing mobility as flexible growth
Every company is, more or less, unique, meaning that the way they customize their cloud software is also determined by the specific characteristics of the business itself. Nevertheless, when it comes to mobility, the path that needs to be taken is somewhat the same, regardless of business size or industry. What’s more, mobility in this context is twofold.
First, we have mobility regarding mobile technologies, such as smartphones and tablets. Statistics show that in 2017, there were 3.5 billion unique mobile internet users and mobile devices would drive over 80 percent of all global internet usage. Also, 88 percent of those who search for a local business on a mobile device will also get in contact with that business within the next 24 hours. Likewise, 92 percent of those even made a purchase. Cloud-based technologies have seen a steep rise, alongside these mobile trends.
Second, mobility presents itself in a much higher degree of flexibility than what was previously possible. With cloud computing, authorized staff members can access information from pretty much everywhere there is an internet connection, no longer being tied to a single license and a single, dedicated device, such as a PC. It dramatically streamlines internal operations, reducing human error and miscommunication in the process.
Concerning customization, traditional software solutions rarely, if ever, allowed for third-party app integration. With cloud computing, however, companies can choose from hundreds of third-party apps, which, in turn, can be further customized to fit in with the company’s own unique strategy and business needs.
Another point of interest is data backup. In the past, backup was done manually. With cloud technology, data is backed up around the clock. It means there will be no disruption or loss of information, regardless of various incidents such as theft or breakage.
Automation of manual processes is also possible via cloud computing, allowing for automatic synchronization and reconciliation without the need for countless hours of work.
Cloud customization will free up companies from having to adhere to the already-established one-size-fits-all approach to the issue. Businesses can now pick and choose third-party applications that best fit their needs without having to compromise flexibility and mobility to do so. It, alone, will drive growth by eliminating unneeded processes and streamlining operations.