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Your aim as a small business owner is straightforward – you want to improve your business processes whilst offering competitive customer services. However, small businesses often lack the resources that bigger corporations typically have. But every big corporation started small – so what can SMBs learn from the big players?

The ever-growing administrative burden

The ever-growing pile of paperwork is an all-too-familiar image for many small business owners. Findings from Canon research suggest almost a third (28 per cent) of SMBs and SoHos in Europe spend more time than they’d like on general administration. As a result, 29 per cent of firms say they do not spend enough time cultivating and generating new business.

IT resource challenges

Large firm executives are not immune from being weighed down by day-to-day operational issues either. IT directors at blue-chip organisations are often criticised for spending too much time in the data centre and not enough on the areas that will add value. Some experts refer to the Pareto principle, where 80 per cent of the effects come from 20 per cent of the causes. Commonly known as the ’80/20 rule’, the principle provides a guide to how businesses efforts can be wasted.

Putting principles into practice

In the case of IT directors, some industry analysts suggest resources would be better utilised if they could allocate more resources to generating new business opportunities instead of using it on paperwork.

With 49 per cent of SMB and SoHo owners agreeing that bureaucracy is a challenge for their business, it is going to be difficult for small firm owners to move their focus from operations to business development.

Mobility matters

Rather than dealing with the paper mountain on their return to the office, small business owners can use mobile cloud computing which will allow employees to receive and update information on the go. Digital transformation should also be practised back at HQ. By creating electronic versions of their records with new printing technology, it allows them to fully control the processing of business information.

Administrative challenges can be conquered by learning from larger business practices, adopting new technologies and embracing the digital transformation. This can drastically reduce the amount of time spent on lengthy admin tasks and can increase productively by focussing on activities that add to the bottom line