How to Be a Better Business Owner

leader-briefing-teamTax Day is right around the corner. Business owners everywhere have been taking stock, collecting paperwork, preparing documents and making plans for 2019 to be their most profitable year yet. Inevitably, they’re considering the age-old challenges of how to save money, generate more profit, grow the business and keep their employees happy. Taking care of people should always rank among the top priorities of any business, and technology allows us to do just that by making your employees’ jobs easier. After all, keeping morale high also helps keep productivity and retention rates high. Empower your employees to make decisions, improve transparency throughout your organization, research and adopt smart technology solutions, and you’ll be a better business owner. Here are some strategies worth considering:

Improve Productivity through Remote Work
Some employers remain uneasy about allowing their employees to work from home, but their apprehension may be misguided. A two-year Stanford University study produced some incredible results related to the productivity of remote workers. The study found that work-from-home employees work a bona fide full shift or more, in contrast to their commuting colleagues whose work time is reduced by traffic jams, which delay their arrival time and inspire many to leave early to get a jump start on the congestion. Employee attrition also decreased by 50 percent among the remote workers, who took shorter breaks, had fewer sick days and took less time off. The company researched in the Stanford study, who divided their employees into two groups – a control group who remained at headquarters and a remote group – also saved $2,000 per employee because they needed to rent less office space. While some remote workers found it isolating and found they preferred the office environment, in most cases the benefits outweighed any drawbacks – for employees and company alike.

In 2019, consider giving your employees this option, if you’re not already. You can even try it on a pilot basis with stipulations. You might be surprised at the results.

Allow BYOD — but Be Smart about It
Once you begin a remote arrangement with some or all of your employees, you’ll want to give some serious thought to the security of their devices. BYOD (or Bring Your Own Device) is a common approach, though it’s associated with cybersecurity issues. About 70 percent of companies are allowing BYOD, but if they don’t have a way to keep tabs on company-issued laptops and phones, they risk losing these assets.

Instead of the BYOD policy, consider COPE, or Corporately Owned, Personally Enabled. COPE allows employees to select their choice of a company approved device. However, the employees retain considerable control because their devices are personally enabled. The IT department can monitor and secure the devices to some degree, but because the devices are personally enabled, they can still be quite vulnerable to risk.

The CYOD approach attempts to resolve this by allowing employees to select the device of their choice from among a limited selection provided by the employer. Each device is equipped with the employer’s preferred means of security. Employees pay the up-front expense for the hardware itself, while the employer retains ownership of the SIM and the device contract, and maintains greater control over the devices than they would with the COPE approach.

Regardless of the approach you choose with your remote workers, asset tracking software can help you track and monitor these fixed assets.

Use Technology to Save Time
Time management can be difficult even for the best of us. Some employees can benefit from time-management apps. On a companywide basis, asset tracking software saves everyone time – especially those responsibilities involve cataloging assets and inventory. Best of all, asset tracking software can keep remote employees in the loop by bringing everyone into the conversation. With office inventory software, you can put company data in one central database, which will save time for remote employees who need to view updated data on inventory and other assets.

Use Predictive Analytics
Predictive analytics is becoming an increasingly powerful tool for companies everywhere. Once you’ve accumulated a year’s worth of assets and inventory data, you can roll it into predictive analytics software in order to obtain insights and plan you’ll need for the coming year.

Predictive analytics tools are only as good as the data you collect, so before you invest in an analytics tool be sure you know how to collect asset data and other important company datasets.

Be Transparent and Build Your Team’s Morale
Transparency is critical for making your employees feel like they’re part of the team. With that in mind, make team-building exercises a regular part of your culture. Your employees have a vested interest in your company’s performance, so share insights with them regarding industry, company and employee performance, short- and long-term goals and other initiatives. Update them on what their colleagues are doing throughout the organization.

Improve Communication
Communication, too, is vital for morale – especially if you’ve got remote workers. A social networking solution can help break down silos between departments. While open-door policies are great, solicit your employees’ opinions, too. Your employees should always feel free to share their ideas, provide feedback and alert you to any potential concerns.

If you’re rolling out an asset and/or inventory tracking and management solution this year, make it your mission to find a simple, yet powerful tool, and make sure your employees understand how it benefits them to use it. Asset tracking and management can promote better communication and accountability, along with savings of time and money. Perhaps most important, when your business is running more efficiently, you eliminate frustration and improve morale.

Asset Panda’s powerful, flexible and intuitive asset tracking platform helps companies around the world track and manage their most vital assets. To learn more about what Asset Panda can do for your business in 2019, visit assetpanda.com

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