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4 signs it's time to update your business systems and processes

20 June 2018

The systems and processes in even the smallest business are numerous and complex. When a business experiences growth, many of the processes and systems that were developed during the startup phase will no longer meet the company's requirements, and as such will be causing inefficiencies. 

Additionally, having the right tools to do the job is a key component of creating a strong culture, and if employees feel their working practices and systems aren't up to scratch, they may be less inclined to stick around. 

If you recognise the following signs in your business, it's likely time to update your systems and processes:

1) A lot of tasks are done manually

Technology allows for a whole host of previously manual tasks to be completed automatically. If you find you're spending precious time doing things that could be automated, especially if they involve filling paper forms out by hand, it's definitely time to take stock of your systems.

It's time to update your systems if you're filling out lots of tasks by hand. Filling out lots of things by hand that could be automated? It's time to update your systems!

2) Your systems frequently break or include errors

Inputting things manually leads to errors. This has the potential to be devastating if these mistakes are in an area such as accounts, as they could lead to tax and compliance issues. 

On the other hand, you could automate everything, but if those systems are constantly breaking you'll also run into difficulties. In this case, it could be that the technology you're using is too complicated, and simpler coding might work better. 

If this is leading to frequent loss of data, or if you're consistently trying to find information on different devices, this is also a sign that you need to rethink the way your business works, especially as accurate, up-to-date information is essential to making strong business decisions. 

3) You rely on one person to fix these errors

It's easy to fall back on one key individual to fix any errors in your systems, particularly if that person created them in the first place. But what if that person were to leave? You'd have nobody who can fix your systems, which could lead to serious difficulties for your organisation. 

4) You're experiencing bottlenecks and backlogs

Ultimately, systems and processes are designed to ensure you deliver the product or service that you're meant to. If you're experiencing constant bottlenecks, leading to backlogs or missed deadlines and disgruntled customers, you definitely need to change your processes as soon as possible. You could have the best product in the world, but if you can't deliver it, you won't stay in business long. 

Although these are the key signs you need to update your systems and processes, ideally you'd change things before these issues become a reality. So, if you're planning on expanding, it's important to consider your procedures and work out what needs to change to support that growth. 

BDODrive can help you assess where your organisation is at today, to work out exactly what you need to grow tomorrow. Contact one of our business advisory team today to find out more.