There is a misplaced, yet popular belief that fast growing companies have achieved nirvana of success. That once a company starts growing fast it has everything going for it.
Although high growth brings with it a number of benefits such as visibility, market momentum etc. It also brings as many challenges which if not managed, can be severely damaging to the longer term business prospects.
Regardless of the industry or size, if the business begins to grow rapidly, the pace of activities soon start outstripping the capacity of the underlying business system to handle it. One of the key elements of this business system is the IT system supporting the various activities and initiatives. This blog takes a look at some challenges faced by rapidly growing businesses and how a careful choice of the underlying IT system can help keep the business from getting into trouble:
1. Investing in the Right Collaboration Technology Platform
For fast growing businesses, selecting the right technology can often be the difference between success and failure.
While scaling up, the right way to go about it, is to identify the underlying IT systems that can not just provide the support for the business activities but make it possible to handle the growing volume of work. Also, important is the ability to efficiently track and analyse the business activities.
Remember that technology is a very powerful enabler for businesses; Having the capacity to create new business models and deliver new business advantages.
For example, a company might ask:
- How can we effectively collaborate with staff spread across different geographical locations? Or,
- How can we manage the growing customer base while gaining insights and opportunities to grow sales? Or,
- How do we manage the growth in communication amongst team members and with customers and partners effectively? Or,
- How do we ensure that we do meet regulatory compliances. Or,
- How do we ensure business continuity against the backdrop of cyber security threats?
Thinking about such strategic questions can help businesses select technology which is the right fit for them.
Investing in the right collaboration and customer facing technologies, with adequate security, durability, scalability and intelligence is key to supporting fast growth. Often the inadequacies of the underlying IT Infrastructure holds back a company, stealing it of its vital energy and productive time.
2. IT systems to help cover Legal and Compliance Risks
The #1 focus for businesses is growing sales, increasing profits and achieving financial stability. However instead of dealing with all things concerning growth, most businesses, worry about litigation and compliance audits.
An Osterman Research report points out that a fairly large number of businesses in the US are embroiled in litigation.
Various legal obligations like freedom of information (FoIA) laws in the US are creating new retention and recovery demands, whereas the diversity and volume of electronically stored information (ESI) is increasing. This has resulted in an increase in the prominence of electronic discovery (or eDiscovery) in recent years.
According to Gartner Enterprise Information Archiving Magic Quadrant, eDiscovery is an important compliance requirement, where electronic data is accessed, located, secured, as well as sought to produce as evidence during a civil litigation.
To comply with eDiscovery requirements, and prevent adverse impact to the reputation, businesses should opt for an email archiving service with an easy to use eDiscovery feature.
3. Investing in Elastic IT Systems to Support Growth
Whether the growth is planned or ad-hoc, it is difficult for businesses to minutely plan every element. As they start to pick up speed, they can easily overestimate manpower, storage, software licenses and other resource requirements leading to excess spending.
When it comes to storage and software licenses, there is a better alternative to upfront investment in IT Infrastructure capacity. Investing in elastic cloud based IT systems which offers a ‘pay as you go’ option, can deliver the key benefit of freeing up precious resource to support growth activities that would otherwise be locked in excess and unused capacity. No resource is wasted, since businesses only pay for services procured, rather than provisioning based on estimated growth over a period of time.
Are you facing similar issues in your fast growing business? We’d love to hear how you are solving your businesses challenges using IT as a critical tool for enabling growth.