If you’re new to being your own boss, you’ll quickly realize that starting your own business can be a little overwhelming. There are many things you need to put in place before you start so that you can work smoothly. Setting up accounts, finding suitable suppliers and hiring employees are generally things most owners have to go through when customers start placing orders.
It’s important to realize that too much focus on these tasks can take away from the meat and potatoes of running your business. Be sure to focus on the customer and provide quality service and products. Sticking to the essential tools and setting things up as efficiently as possible will give you the best chance for your business to thrive.
In this article, we will review some of the most essential and integrated tools required for new businesses. Some tools may not be relevant to specific industries, but we will do our best to make them useful for everyone.
The first consideration for your business should be the accounting software. The ability to track expenses from the start of your business is essential. If you know what you’re spending from the start, you’ll be able to make better business decisions going forward and budget effectively.
Some popular software include Xero, Quickbooks and MYOB. These programs give you the functionality required for almost everything in your business, from invoicing to analyzing your assets and even employee timesheets. You should find one with competitive pricing and a user-friendly interface.
If you have the budget, it is also a good idea to hire an accountant. Getting an accountant early on will simplify the set-up and future management of the accounts as it won’t be a tedious handover.
Inventory and warehouse management systems
Keeping track of your finances is one hurdle, but the next big thing to keep track of is your biggest asset, the statement. The first thing required will be a place to store your inventory; if you have made large orders, this will probably be a warehouse. Putting protocols in place to keep your inventory secure and software to track your inventory will be one of the essential first steps in setting up your business.
To keep your assets safe, you must first ensure that access to these areas is restricted and secure. To do this, ensure that all entrances and exits have appropriate locks, while ensuring that staff have access cards for identification. You can do this by giving each employee something as simple as plain blue lanyards that they can present to the security staff when they enter.
The tools available to track and keep inventory safe vary by your niche, but many programs are available. As mentioned earlier, Xero and Quickbooks both have inventory tracking functionality. There are also many other great tools such as Sortly, Oodo, StockApp, Mobile Inventory and many more.
Now that we’ve covered the basics, we need to shift our attention to the lifeblood of our business, which are the customers. If you don’t have appropriate marketing systems in place, your journey to customer acquisition will be challenging. Fortunately, we can control our marketing in many ways so that we have the best chance of reaching the right prospects.
Now, depending on whether you outsource marketing or do it yourself, your options may be different. But a few essential tools will be used in both scenarios; these primarily include task management tools, email marketing software, automated content marketing software, and even social media marketing tools.
Whether you run your business online or offline, these tools will undoubtedly help you achieve your business goals faster. There can be a lot of noise when you start out and so many options that we can encounter decision fatigue when you start out. However, if you focus on the essentials listed in this article, you will have a solid foundation that will help you move forward faster in your business.