When it comes to running simple, the leadership of growing small and midsize businesses today are in a unique position relative to older, bigger companies. They can choose to invest in traditional approaches to IT, like their predecessors – or new and simple IT, right from the start.
Many older, larger competitors grew up before we had the Internet – let alone cloud computing. They evolved during a time when best-in-class was the watchword for IT – and this meant the adoption of lots of stand-alone, purpose-built legacy solutions that did their jobs well.
But ultimately, this approach has led to the business and IT complexity that’s currently making it hard for them to adapt, scale, and respond to business and market changes. Sure, they’ve added new and cutting edge technology where it matters most, but their network remains a patchwork of old and new that just wasn’t designed to play well together.
Savvy executives of SMBs are choosing a better path – one that will allow them to stay agile, scalable, and responsive, regardless of how big they grow. And in doing so, they can scale faster, respond to change faster, meet new customer needs more easily, and innovate for competitive advantage faster and more easily.
As noted in an Economist Intelligence Unit paper, “Scaling SMEs: Building a flexible platform for growth,” many are choosing cloud-based architectures and applications that can be accessed via mobile devices – and at a very affordable cost, as the prices for accessing cloud computing keep dropping.
- There’s no need to tie up capital in servers and other hardware, backup systems, and disaster recovery capabilities – or assume the ongoing costs of hiring people to maintain software and systems. This means you have more capital to invest in strategic areas, such as hiring new people to expand where you see the biggest opportunities for growth.
- And cloud computing can help you avoid ever hitting the wall when it comes to growth and scalability. Cloud computing can be used to build a flexible platform for growth – one with limited fixed costs so businesses have flexibility to use cash strategically as opportunities arise. These solutions also allow you to, for example:
- Start using software connecting your front office with your operations so you can centrally manage information and processes – instead of spreadsheets and a patchwork of fit-for-purpose apps that silo information.
- Easily operationalize state-of-the-art processes either through outsourced services (think payroll) or cloud apps that are constantly being updated and improved.
- Innovate faster by buying the process support needed to support new offerings, business models, and more.
- Access management information from anywhere, even from mobile devices – for example, billing and financial information.
These types of technologies are no longer out of reach for even the smallest business today – and when you start early with them, you can head off the cumbersome complexities of many big companies and position your business for opportunity for sustainable growth. To Achieve economies of scale, To Globalize your workforce on the cheap, To Reduce spending on technology infrastructure, for Streamline processes, To Reduce capital costs, To Improve accessibility, To Monitor projects more effectively, To Minimize licensing new software, Improve flexibility cloud computing plays a very essential role.
Business agility requires the ability to create new business processes and change existing ones. This often means adding to or changing the supporting IT resources. The difficulty of doing this, and the time that it takes, can be a major barrier to innovation. Cloud computing can remove this barrier by enabling the enterprise to add to or change its IT resources quickly and easily.
What’s your IT strategy for keeping things simple to support scalable growth?