With the tax time rush behind us, companies should look ahead to find their competitive edge.
It’s an ideal time for businesses to overhaul their tech stack and ensure they start the financial year with streamlined and progressive infrastructure. It’s an opportunity for every business leader to consider whether their company is well-equipped to operate in an increasingly digital environment. If the answer is no, how will you quickly get up to speed without having to make a huge investment or tackle a steep learning curve?
From modernising HR operations to automating invoices, a range of emergent platforms and utilities will allow businesses to deal with evolving demands – and now is the right time for organisations to integrate them into their operations. With new tech systems being introduced from an institutional level, like PayTo’s instant account-to-account payments that will change how Australians pay for services and transfer funds, or new government guidelines such as work-from-home recommendations, advice and a clear direction are more important than ever.
Here’s a curated list of tools across various functions that can instantly boost a business’s competitive edge. We’ve all heard of the Slacks, Zooms and Jiras that manage day-to-day activities; however, it’s important to ensure the tools behind the scenes are also up to scratch.
Nobody wants another app to use, but introducing a few strategic tech tools could eliminate common pain points, automate unnecessarily time-consuming processes and ensure your mission-critical systems are future-proof.
HR, People and Culture
If you don’t have the budget to bring on a dedicated HR person, your team isn’t large enough to warrant one yet, or your HR team needs a little less admin, here are a few options to help simplify HR whilst still keeping it professional:
Employment Hero- for managing your people
Being a small business owner is hard. There are many things to stay on top of, and, more often than not, business owners aren’t aware of their HR and payroll employment requirements.
Employment Hero is the world’s leading HR, payroll, and benefits platform for SMEs. Its total employment management solutions cover four key pillars: Talent Solutions; Core HR; Payroll; eBenefits.
Compliance is at the heart of Employment Hero’s platform, as it has built modern awards into its technology to save business owners the headache of staying on top of these awards themselves.
Manual, paper-based set-ups no longer cut it for small businesses looking to implement effective and efficient processes to grow their business. Not only does Employment Hero reduce HR administration time by up to 80 per cent, but the technology allows small companies to fulfil their obligations as employers whilst equipping them with the best tools and resources to attract, retain and keep their workforces happy.
Whether you’re an agency or professional services firm billing a monthly retainer, a SaaS company, or an eCommerce brand, payments can make or break customer relationships. Here are a few options to automate and manage those systems, whether you’re transacting locally or with international customers.
GoCardless- for international payments
Administrating recurring payments and managing international customer bases can significantly drain businesses’ time, money, and resources. Fragmented infrastructure and restrictive bank debit schemes can lead to tangled processes, missed debits, and compromised customer experiences.
GoCardless is the first global network designed specifically for international recurring payments, developed to remedy this all-too-common issue. With GoCardless, businesses can settle all payments using a single bank account in their local currency with full transparency over fees and foreign exchange rates. And by moving away from cards in favour of bank debit, businesses can also choose when their customer pays by pulling the money directly from accounts.
This is advantageous as bank debit has a 4x lower failure rate than cards, meaning that GoCardless also reduces the amount of oversight necessary to ensure accounts are paid.
For businesses experiencing increased overseas business (or are planning to expand abroad), GoCardless should be a top-of-the-list consideration.
Zepto- for instant account-to-account payments
Zepto’s instant payments system is essential for businesses wanting to work to maximise efficiency in payments. Time is as precious as ever, and finance admin can quickly become a time-consuming task if not kept on top of it.
Zepto offers several solutions to make payments simple, secure, and fast so businesses can stress less about financial admin. With instant payments, businesses can expect their customers and suppliers to receive real-time digital payments, maximising payment flow and benefiting from automation and automatic fraud detection.
Zepto’s PayID-powered solutions can eliminate expensive business pain points such as reconciliation, process inefficiencies, unauthorised payments, and funding lags. Zepto allows the delivery of funds into a business account with 100 per cent data accuracy, real-time messaging, settlement, and reconciliation. Payments are made easy, fast, and simple.
Zepto also offers instant wages, taking businesses’ payroll to another level.
Loyalty and trust
Loyalty and trust go hand in hand in a relationship. It should be different from a relationship between a brand and its customers. If you are a business looking at ways to increase customer retention, here are some strategies that focus on building and maintaining loyalty and trust with current and future customers.
Yotpo- for creating sticky, return customers
For brands, Yotpo offers a range of communication and marketing services to elevate sales, better communicate with customers, and maximise customer loyalty and retention. From SMS marketing and subscription programs to loyalty and referral programs, Yotpo has the tools a brand needs to better connect with new customers and build on existing relationships.
Yotpo can tailor each marketing program to a brand’s specific needs and the community they hope to build.
For example, Yotpo can customise its loyalty and referrals program to ensure it includes what a brand wants to offer and what it wants to reward its customers with. This could be a three-tier points-based system that rewards customers for spending with vouchers, discounts, birthday gifts, and other exclusive offers.
Refundid – for instant refunds to give customers peace of mind
For businesses looking to build trust and loyalty with their customers, offering value to your brand is key. Refundid is a customer-focused fintech solution that provides instant refunds on eCommerce purchases.
Refundid is all about speed. Its global-first solution utilises advanced financial technology to deliver refunds into a customer’s account in under 60 seconds, even before the item is returned. Providing the utmost flexibility to online shopping, customers have up to 10 days to ship back the order.
This solution eliminates the worry of the customer who is out of pocket and waiting for a refund on an online purchase that turned out to be the wrong size or faulty. Refundid solves this anxiety point for customers with no risk to the retailer.
Compliance and data
Data compliance communicates to customers that their sensitive information is protected and secure. If you are a business looking to build robust data policies, here are some options that eliminate some of the pain points around the time, maintenance, and staff commitment required by compliance and secure data services.
Codat- for simple and secure decisioning
Lost and insecure business data can be devastating for an organisation when they’re still growing. Codat is a straightforward and multi-faceted solution that can benefit any business.
Codat taps into an expansive suite of business platforms, enabling users to get a snapshot of a small-to-medium business customer’s financial standing.
Its prime advantage is ensuring security for all parties involved in typical information transactions. Instead of asking clients to email sensitive financial documents, users can tap into the platforms they utilise to access a broad information overview and the specifics required.
The platform effectively compiles all the financial data required to make sound business decisions on the client end, seamlessly reconciling this data into their accounting software.
By viewing all relevant information on a page, Codat also enables greater efficiency for all involved and helps reduce the risk of misplaced business data.
Obligatory compliance and regulation around B2B payments, financial agreements, payroll, and more becomes a breeze through proper integration of Codat’s APIs, further enhancing efficiency around necessary but often rigid and tedious processes.
Relativity- for checking your blind spots
Whether an incidental requirement or part of an ongoing commitment, all businesses must engage with complex legal processes at some point.
While much of this does require human oversight, there are key legal obligations such as protecting sensitive information, insurance against data breaches, and distributing legal holds that many businesses will have to undertake routinely.
Relativity offers a swathe of tools and features that can significantly cut down the time and commitment required to keep compliance, processes, and checks moving, thanks to refined templates, tools developed by experienced professionals, and a comprehensive and powerful AI platform.
Relativity’s AI platform is also a tool for creating better, more inclusive workplaces.
Their unique Unconscious Bias Detector analyses employee demographic information and performance reviews to help users understand the context and reveal patterns of potential bias – presented in a clear, readable report.
The power of this tool is that through a very straightforward integration, a business can instantly begin improving its culture without having to undertake significant internal audits.