New Business Consultant Gregg Pickard takes a timely look at how businesses can insulate themselves from the worst that the winter can bring, and build a more resilient business in the process.
In my work as a Datel Consultant, I’m on the road most days, visiting customers and helping them to either implement or customise their Sage software. One issue that regularly comes to the fore at this time of the year – especially if road conditions have made my journey difficult – is business continuity.
The business owners and managers I speak to are aware of just how vulnerable businesses can be in adverse weather and are right to be worried. Recent years have seen widescale disruption and, while most of the UK has got away lightly so far in 2015, many parts of the country have already been seriously affected by weather-induced chaos.
Even in relatively mild winters, it doesn’t take much to bring the transport networks grinding to a halt and many working days can be lost as staff struggle to reach the office or are forced to take time off because their children’s school is closed.
In short, just how resilient is their business?
Greater automation within Sage ensures that tasks essential to the company’s cash flow, such as creating and sending out invoices, are carried out as normal, even if there’s no one in the office.
A Sage solution touches each aspect of your business and creates a pool of shared, accessible information. Team members can cover for colleagues affected by adverse weather or afflicted by winter bugs and deal efficiently with sales orders and other customer enquiries.
With a Sage solution, our customers can be ‘open for business as usual’, even if the office is closed. Staff can connect to critical systems from home or from a temporary location over the internet or via a secure network.
All these features, integral to a Sage system, support business continuity in the face of any natural or man-made crisis with the potential to damage your profitability and ability to provide good customer service: break-in, vandalism, fire, burst pipe, power cut, heating failure, volcanic ash...
In today’s competitive climate, having this flexibility gives you an immediate advantage whatever the weather and whatever the time of year. After all, who can forget the widespread flooding during the summer months just a few short years ago?