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Expert Advice for High-Growth Businesses

3 Proven Ways SMB Tech Leaders Can Deliver Supergrowth

As a tech leader at a growing SMB, you have one primary responsibility—to support the expansion initiatives of your company. More specifically, this role has to ensure that the organization leverages the right technologies to grow exponentially, but in a cost-effective manner ― with limited headcount.

Sound familiar?

Having to do more with less is nothing new to SMB tech leaders, which is why scalability is so very important.  Imagine the challenges of supporting company growth with the bare minimum of resources. But this not anything that you don’t already know; it is an issue you face daily. That is why an increasing number of CIOs and IT leaders are turning to the cloud technology.

Still hesitant? Here are 3 ways you can use the cloud to not only sustain growth, but to obtain “supergrowth.”

UNDERSTAND THAT NOT ALL CLOUDS ARE THE SAME

You may be thinking, “Everyone already uses the cloud, so how can it be the competitive advantage I need to reach supergrowth?” Well, not all clouds are the same.

There are hundreds of cloud point solutions that can be purchased to solve individual problems, like tax software, accounting software, or scheduling software. These cloud technologies can be pieced together to help run your business; however, this piecemeal approach eradicates the value of the cloud.

One type of cloud software will probably not be compatible with another. This means they cannot “speak” or pass data easily to each other—which means your lines of business have to manually transfer data back and forth. And any type of manual process always leads to mistakes.   

When cloud software is fully integrated, data becomes a powerful tool. For example, sales will have real-time access to customer financial data and inventory levels, so they can sell faster and make promises they can keep.

STOP ROGUE IT PRACTICES

Oftentimes, LOB leaders go “cloud rogue,” meaning they begin using cloud-based services without any oversight of the SMB’s IT department—and this happens in about 75% of companies.

While rogue cloud deployments may meet the needs of an individual LOB, this also creates serious security and compliance risks for your company. And as mentioned earlier, rogue cloud usage may lead to integration issues across all operations. 

To select a cloud solution that successfully meets the needs of all LOBs, including those of your IT department,  your organization should create a “cloud road map” that assesses:

  • The current state of all IT systems and the network
  • The company’s business goals
  • The route the IT department needs to take to help the company achieve these goals

ALIGN INITIATIVES WITH BUSINESS GOALS

For tech leaders, it can be a difficult to juggle an SMB’s IT needs, customers’ needs, and business objectives. To successfully balance these three areas, IT leaders and their teams need to talk to LOB leaders to understand what drives the business—and what they need from the IT side in order to obtain “supergrowth.”

As an IT leader, you should bring your eye for technology to the table, in all facets of the business. Don’t highlight technology for technology’s sake, but if you see where technology could potentially improve a process or save time and money, then suggest it. Additionally, you should make it possible for other teams to provide input regarding the functionality they need to be successful in their roles.

THE RIGHT CLOUD FOR “SUPERGROWTH”

With shrinking budgets and minimal headcount, it may seem like an impossible feat to identify technology that would meet the needs of ALL departments… and be able to scale as your company grows. But it’s not.

Oracle’s fully integrated cloud solution suite can meet the needs of your SMB now AND as it continues to grow. Through a single, centralized platform, all operations of your business will have what they need to work efficiently, effectively, and collaboratively—thereby ensuring “supergrowth” for your company.

For more information, check out our new ebook—

3 Ways the Cloud Can be Used to Sustain Supergrowth: What Every SMB Leader Needs to Know. 

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