If you’re expecting your business to go through a sustained period of expansion, it’s a good idea to prepare ahead of time. This is because once events start to accelerate, the phone rings off the hook, and staff are running around, it becomes harder to let calmer heads prevail.
What’s been put in place ahead of time comes into play strongly at this time to smooth the way, rather than break the business due to an excess of activity coupled with a lack of preparation.
Here are some suggestions on how to prepare your company for the growth to come.
Get Standard Operating Procedures in Place Soon
A standard operating procedure (SOP) is a process-based document that spells out how a task should be completed. It includes the necessary steps to complete it. Larger businesses typically have many of these SOPs covering every aspect of their business.
Why are SOPs so important?
The reality is that companies only perform as well as their systems do. While having an elite performer on staff is great, should, or we could say when they leave, it will create a deep void. When the new recruit comes into the business, they won’t immediately know how to perform at their best in the role because there’s a lack of instruction. As a result, standards will vary with increasing staff turnover, which is not a good thing.
Why Should SOPs Be Added Early?
Each SOP requires time to prepare, test and then update. They will never be finished and complete. Instead, they are prepared, then amended and improved upon as a continual process. As such, the sooner all necessary systems are documented within the business, the more useful each SOP will be.
Address Preexisting Heating and Cooling Problems
When your office already gets too hot in the summer or becomes a bit chilly with staff complaining in the colder months, then there’s already an issue with the installed heating and air services.
Depending on how old the office is, the heating and cooling systems could be ancient. If there’s an existing HVAC system with overhead vents, perhaps reliable heating contractors haven’t been called in to review its performance level. If so, this could explain the problems being experienced.
Understand that as the office gets busier and more staff come on board, it will get hotter in the summer. Similarly, the extra business equipment needed will raise the ambient temperature unless the AC system is addressed.
To get a reliable heating and air conditioning services, talk with Semper Solaris to see what they can do. They have many years of experience dealing with business HVAC services and provide excellent feedback.
Which Staff Aren’t Ready for Rapid Growth?
It’s possible that the staff quality at the business presently won’t be good enough when growth kicks into high gear. Some people are only capable of operating at a certain level and won’t be able to cope beyond that.
One sign of this potential is when a member of staff either finds it difficult to adapt to new procedures or technologies. If they’re always resistant to changes to how the company operates, then they surely will struggle when the office becomes far busier than now.
Know when it’s time to part with staff that have reached their ultimate potential in the business and need to be given their notice period. Only this way can they be replaced with the right people who have worked in fast-growing companies previously and are ready to respond positively to the challenge that it presents.
Is the Right Technology in Place?
The computer systems and software need to cope with what’s to come. While a basic system might have worked fine with fifty orders a month coming in, how will it handle 400 a month?
Are systems sufficiently automated to reduce time requirements per order? Is the customer onboarding efficient enough to not let the business get bogged down when a slew of new customers wish to sign up?
Also, look at the technological requirement per department. For instance, the customer service team may require a better system for managing customer services or support requests that covers phone, email and chat app communications. The management of the flow of initial contacts from customers will require better oversight and management to locate and address bottlenecks before complaints escalate.
Bear in mind that implementing new technology and software when the business is well into the growth phase is very problematical. It’s vastly better to have it up and running with staff fully versed on how to use the CRM system before that point.
For companies about to go through a growth spurt or seeing the first signs of it already, preparing early avoids missteps and failures that are costly to resolve. Yet, by investing early into what’s required, it makes the business situation far more sustainable.