As the recent weeks have shown, there’s one thing more certain than Brexit and that’s more uncertainty – and while the warnings to businesses to prepare for the worst and hope for the best look set to be ramped up yet again, it really is important to remember that not everything a business needs to prepare for can be traced back to Brexit.
Local, national and international economic uncertainty, rising fuel prices, exchange rates, skills shortages, rate rises, and inflation are just some of ‘usual’ things businesses have had to deal with for many years. Though Brexit has brought these back into focus, businesses have always had to plan and adapt to protect themselves.
So as we continue to wait for post-Brexit clarity, we’re still likely to know very little about the government’s strategy and what it plans for some time yet. And will that provide all the reassurances we’re looking for? On the evidence of what’s gone before, that seems unlikely.
My advice? Focus on what you can change now for any eventuality. Future-proof your business with built in capacity to allow for greater innovation, better productivity and cheaper costs. Every business in every sector should always be reviewing where it can improve and take the practical steps they need that will allow it to grow and stay relevant – and competitive.
Don’t lag behind on technology: In today’s world, countless technologies exist that help improve exposure, encourage communication, and can cater to specific needs. It empowers business owners to achieve what they set out to do and allows them to be creative and productive. Businesses that want to stay relevant know that they must incorporate new technologies into their company’s growth strategy.
Get digital ready: The best way to combat challenges is to develop a company-wide digital transformation strategy. Digital technologies are transforming industries in completely new and different ways, offering major improvements in delivery, efficiency and safety, as well as new and better ways to interact with customers. Digital transformation initiatives are built on new platforms including mobile, cloud, analytics and social technologies and businesses that continue to transform are still seeing the benefits – including improved client interaction and retention.
Get Cloud ready: There are trends that improve businesses and there are trends that are so innovative that they change the game altogether. Incorporating Cloud computing is game changing. The best thing about this technology is, it is extremely flexible, scalable and implementable to every SME. Cloud computing allows businesses to access their information and software virtually, creating a global way of accessing your data any place, any time. With no need to replace existing hardware, the cost benefits are huge – as is the capacity, security, flexibility and reliability obtained.
Work smarter: Embracing new communication technology provides multiple options for improvement and flexibility. From video conferencing to team conference calls on-the-go, there’s no waiting around for a free meeting space to push your plans along. With new integrated communications systems linked to the Cloud already widely used, flexible working is now also more achievable for everyone who needs or demands it.
Build a better culture and staff morale: Most of your staff already use advanced tech in their daily lives – from advanced smart phones to apple watches and internet-on-the go. As a forward-thinking business, perhaps now is the time to embrace new and creative ways to connect colleagues and customers that provide better, more productive ways of working that suit your staff and your business.
While many businesses fear change and some can be set in their ways, when it comes to running a modern organisation fit for future, ‘if it’s not broke, don’t fix it’ just won’t wash anymore. Embracing change and exploring the huge benefits, cost and efficiency savings on offer, is key to a positive start and usher in new growth.
It may also not be easy to decide when to take advantage of change, but given the challenges and uncertainties ahead, and by taking the time to ask the right questions and keeping on top of what’s happening in your industry, the time to take a closer look at the options is now. The answers are already available so there’s no need to wait.