With all the day-to-day responsibilities business owners juggle, staying on top of everything can be challenging. Switching between crunching the latest sales numbers and keeping employees engaged makes maintaining productivity difficult. You want your business to perform well, but it’s impossible to do it all by yourself.
While you have your staff by your side, there are also tech solutions to help your business become more productive. When productivity and efficiency go up, so can sales, quality, employee morale, and more. By adding software and applications to your company’s daily operations, you can stay organized and improve communication.
But with the variety of tech out there, knowing where to start can be confusing and overwhelming. Identifying gaps and opportunities in your processes can give you a solid baseline of which tools can fit. You may see a need for a project management app or a payroll solution for your small business. Communication and engagement tools might be what you need to elevate task coordination and collaboration.
To see how technology can help, consider the ways these tech tools can make your business run more efficiently.
1. Manage Paychecks and Benefits With Payroll Software
On average, it takes small business owners nearly five hours to deal with payroll taxes each pay period. This doesn’t include the time it takes to figure out paycheck and benefit logistics without an automated solution. Maybe you had a hectic month with a few employees who left and a new hire that joined the ranks. Plus, more workers became eligible for insurance, but you’re unsure whether they all filled out the paperwork.
Small business payroll software can alleviate many of these burdens by automating payroll taxes, paycheck distribution and direct deposits, and benefits. With these applications, you can verify and approve time records for hourly employees. Before running payroll, you can also double-check pay rates and add in bonuses or commissions if needed.
Summaries of tax and benefits deductions for each employee are available, making it easier to spot potential problems. If there was a mistake in adding dental insurance for an employee, you can spot it instantly. Payroll software also makes sure your company stays compliant with local, state, and federal tax laws. You won’t have to spend time calculating these deductions for each employee.
Some automated payroll solutions will file your taxes each pay period. You don’t have to worry about filling out the forms and sending in the deposits. And if there’s an upcoming change in the regulations, you’ll be able to stay on top of it.
Another nice feature of payroll apps is that employees can complete W-2s and I-9s online. These forms get stored in the app automatically for future reference. Any contractors you hire can do the same for their 1099s.
2. Stay Organized With Project Management Software
It’s no secret that businesses are struggling with productivity. Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows significant declines between 2007 and 2020. Sometimes productivity loss happens because employees aren’t sure what needs to be done. While some staff members may be proactive about asking what they can work on, not everyone has the same initiative.
Newer employees, for example, might need more guidance and ways to communicate with others. Even seasoned workers can become used to seeing things from the perspective of their individual roles. And one person can’t organize everything and make sure all team members are staying on task. This is where project management software comes in.
Project management apps like Microsoft Project or Trello can help you and your team create projects and assign different tasks. You can prioritize some tasks over others with high, medium, or low designations. For many employees, this simple label can clear up confusion over what tasks they should complete first. When there is a lot to do and multiple projects, prioritization helps organize things from a big-picture perspective.
Creating, assigning, and organizing tasks aren’t the only features of project management software. It also facilitates communication, especially if employees run into obstacles or need input from another team member. Your staff can hand off tasks to others, upload documents for feedback or final approval, and ask questions. Employees can see how things are progressing, respond to questions, or initiate conversations within individual projects or assigned teams.
3. Collaborate With Communication Apps
Even if your business doesn’t have hybrid or remote work arrangements, communication can suffer when employees get busy. Team members who work on separate shifts or carry out different functional roles can become siloed from each other.
There is also a good chance you’ve got a mix of personalities among your staff. Some workers may prefer to be “loud and in charge,” while others like to put quiet thought into their contributions.
Communication apps can keep your team on the same page and facilitate conversations. It’s sometimes easier to respond to an online discussion than an in-person one. Those who work at home a few days of the week can easily reach out. Staff from separate locations can share ideas and get an idea of what’s happening across the organization. New and tenured employees can virtually meet and learn about each other’s roles.
From a managerial perspective, communication software can give you a means of staying in touch with all employees. These apps are also a good way to provide instructions and clarify what’s confusing or lacking in detail.
Approximately 57% of employees do not think they get sufficiently clear guidance. And 69% of managers do not feel comfortable giving feedback to their staff. Communication solutions can break some of the barriers that prevent managers and employees from engaging in meaningful and constructive conversation.
4. Recognize Others With Engagement Software
Employee engagement software can bring in-person and remote teams together. Managers and peers can recognize others for helping out, coming up with viable ideas, and going above and beyond. Depending on the app, you can focus on sharing recognition, company news, and/or announcements. Staff members can get to know each other better through personality tests or by sharing similar interests.
Other engagement apps let you integrate performance tracking, annual or semi-annual employee reviews, and coaching sessions. You can add in performance objectives or development goals you and employees have come up with together. Some apps focus exclusively on peer recognition, letting employees build camaraderie in the digital realm.
Running an efficient business isn’t a simple task you can accomplish on your own. Turning to tech tools that keep you organized and connected to your team can help get you there. With these tools facilitating increased collaboration, communication, and involvement, your vision of success will no longer be out of reach.
Follow Techdee for more!