Getting A Grip on Your Data
Too much data
If you’re a business owner, then you know about data overload. As business owners, we produce way too much data in too many formats yet most of us lack the right tools to manage all this this data. Whether it’s data generated from invoices, deliveries , time sheets, expenses , site visits, development tools, customer support and lots of other sources most small businesses need more help to manage this avalanche of critical data.
There’s more to data management than Excel
Let’s face when, when most business owners are asked what they use to manage some of their most valuable data, the answer is often just Excel. Excel has been the go-to data collection and management tool for so many businesses for so many years. And while Excel is an easy option for the unskilled, it’s no longer of much real value to businesses that want to maximize the value of their data
|Push data so you don't have to look for it|
Sharing is caring
While spreadsheets like Microsoft Excel are very useful and reliable tools, they are essentially financial planning tools. They are for capturing tabular text and numbers but what about everything else? What about sharing with other staff, or interacting with your customers and suppliers?
It is not just about numbers
When you look as your data needs you find more and more non numeric data is being managed - This can be sharing entire documents, pdf’s and even excel worksheets ( try attaching a PDF into Excel). Add in the fact that we work in a time where we are interacting more with our customers, our suppliers and the need to exchange rich data with all players is critical to business success. There are more and more requirements to exchange information with other systems such as accounting, CRM and stock management applications. This is where a smart database with sharing and workflow integrated can make managing and sharing your data smarter and
Enter the Business Database
This is where having a database integral to the business can be critical to the success of your business.
Do you know your Mysql , Mongo db or SQL?
Importantly business database should not require a degree in IT to manage. Having to install Mysql , Mongo db or SQL Server is ok for those that make a living out of IT systems, but for business owners and staff this low level tech is not their day job. You shouldn't need a degree in SQL query to be able to create and manage your own database.
Time = money
For most SME’s,a dynamic database builder tied with workflow can provide all that is required and yet are simple to set up and manage. These are key to the SME - Why invest additional time and resources in a database when time and resources are the two things you have the least.
When you share data what happens when it is updated or something is added? How do you get notified in a way that doesn't consume what little time you and your staff already have? This is where workflow layered on top of a flexible sharing tool-set can energize your business and increase productivity ten fold.
What can a database do for my business?
With a flexible database and query tools you can not only improve your productivity with your staff, you can transform how you work and interact with customers and suppliers.
A good cloud database and workflow solution can let your customers share your information, use forms to enter new requests to your staff, allow customers to order new products, or suppliers to update details directly to your database. All this in the cloud, 24/7 and with no software development required.
|Endless opportunities to manage your data|
Add in workflow for smarts
Small business can be put off by Workflow applications - It sounds complex and takes too much time and resources to properly implement a sound workflow application. While that is true of some of the more complex workflow apps, many modern apps are more than usable for any small business owner.
|Smart workflow takes the pain out of managing your business|
Workflow gives you actions on your database - When an inquiry is added by a customer or a contact form is submitted who receives a notification? Who is responsible for action on the form? By building simple workflow rules or actions on to your database you can transform how you business operates and increase your productivity enormously.
Features that every business database should have
When looking at a database solution for our business you need to keep in mind some requirements that will serve your business well:
- Sharing in the cloud (access 24/7 from anywhere)
- Supports both desktop and mobile users
- Facilitates interaction with your customers, suppliers and contractors.
- Rich data storage such as attaching documents, photos
- Access management controls such as roles and groups.
- Extensive Data security built in
- Workflow for managing actions on your database
- Import/Export tools for exchanging data with other systems
- … doesn't require extensive IT skills to set up and manage.
Get a gripBusiness data needs are going to only go in one direction and that’s ever increasing in both volume and complexity. Getting a grip on your data now will help your business manage it better in the future.