Most small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are stretched for time and resources, which often leads to rushed process implementations, technology upgrades and new hire training. Inevitably, this results in botched executions and a foundation that doesn’t support sustainable scalability.
Sustainable scaling allows you to scale up or down as needed and considers your people, processes and technologies. This is important for the future of your business because it prepares you to deal with unexpected changes. However, before embarking on the path to sustainable scalability, you should be aware of the most common scalability mistakes SMBs make so you can avoid them.
Look out for these common scalability mistakes SMBs make
Lack of proper documentation (for processes, knowledge, technology, etc.)
Have you ever had an employee move on in their career to another company, taking all of their undocumented knowledge and expertise with them? If so, you and your remaining team members have no doubt felt the stress and strain caused by this knowledge gap. Some serious effects of poor documentation include:
- Incorrect business decisions that could cause revenue loss
- Unnecessary time spent hunting for information
- Uncertain communication within the organization, resulting in issues such as organizational stress
- Inaccurate information on employee performance, client preferences and so on
- Inadequate customer service and human resource management
- Inappropriate billing, which could result in fraud charges
This is why documenting every process for every role within your organization is crucial.
Disconnected systems greatly reduce your employees productivity and in many cases cost you money in the long run. It can primarily result in unnecessary data duplication, leaving you with invalid data piling up on your network.
Because there is no free flow of data from one system to another, it could slow down processes. Finally, disconnected systems limit real-time data, which impairs your ability to understand what's going on in your company. This greatly restricts the validity of analytics and trend reporting you need to make pivotal decisions.
In short, the separation between systems causes unnecessary expenses due to redundant, sometimes erroneous and delayed data. As a result, the goal should be to build a single integrated system in which data is created and efficiently flows through all systems.
Outdated onboarding and ongoing training
Many companies don’t have adequate customer or employee onboarding and training procedures. This leads to higher employee and customer churn, which negatively impacts your bottom line. Other repercussions of inadequate onboarding and training include decreased employee/customer morale, diminished employee/customer engagement and confidence, a lack of trust within the organization and a failure to meet financial targets. Correct onboarding of both new clients and employees allows organizations to set expectations from the start.
An unexpected cyberattack is one of the worst things that can happen to an organization. It could be the result of an undiscovered software vulnerability, a security bug that hackers exploited before the patch was released or a security flaw where the company released a patch that you missed. And if your employees are not properly trained in cybersecurity, they could mistakenly give access to your systems or bank accounts to criminals. Being proactive rather than reactive will assist you in avoiding or minimizing the extent of the damage.
If not addressed promptly, out-of-date legacy systems might become your growth story’s biggest faux pas — the consequences of which can have a significant financial impact on your organization.
Remember, outdated systems expose your network to hackers, lower overall productivity and could even push your most valuable employees out the door because they are tired of dealing with shoddy systems that make their jobs hard.
At the end of the day, operations and finances will suffer since the costs of maintaining obsolete components and the likelihood of failure increase.
Partner for success
To avoid repeating these mistakes and to achieve long-term scalability, you'll need a thorough understanding of the tools and best practices required to address the situation, as well as a lot more time and effort than you may have available in your hectic schedule. Working with a managed service provider like MIS Solutions can relieve you of this significant burden while simultaneously giving you the necessary guidance and expertise to help you navigate the complex task of becoming a scalable business.
Why look further? Our years of experience and subject knowledge might be just what you need. Reach out to us for a no-obligation consultation.
Additionally, to learn more about the topic, download our infographic “The Relationship Between Business Sustainability and Success” by clicking here.