As we kicked off our 25th year in business in September, Millennia Group did not wait around for the New Year to start anew. Here's what's new:text
Millennia Group Blog
Small businesses are always looking at ways to grow and prosper. This is a ritual that is practiced regularly but more now than ever and it’s not limited to small businesses either. But while owners and executives throw sh** at the wall, whiteboard ideas or put on our rally caps to generate that grand, economy saving solution, it’s important not to forget the X’s and O’s. That means do the little things right so in the end the chances of winning (or surviving, depending on your perspective) improve.
That is sound advice even if it is from the sporting world and not Wall Street. So what are some of the little things your organization can be doing to increase its chances of winning? Remember, its little things we are talking about, not “Increase Sales” or “Outsource Production”. More like - does your CRM have the correct industry code for every client or do we have fraud controls in place for our wire transfers? Let’s take some clues from those head coaches who at half time always say, “we need to do better at the X’s and the O’s."text
Given that we are coming up to the end of the year, we thought it would be helpful again this year to provide some ideas on how to use your time wisely, if and when projects and meetings slow down at year end. In order to have this supposed time available does presume that you are working. However, even some simple changes or small efforts can produce a tangible and noticeable effect across the company.
Change can be difficult but also extremely rewarding. Reach out to your co-workers, talk to others in your industry or even just friends and family about new things they are doing at work (that make their lives easier). Best of all, talk to existing vendors that you trust and like to work with to see what more they can do to help you. You can even reach out to other vendors to see what other opportunities might exist. Call it R&D. Call it whatever you want and here are some ideas to get you started.text
The prospect of getting a company to change a long established process is difficult, especially when that process touches multiple departments. That should not discourage technology solution providers and businesses from having the confidence to make well thought-out ideas happen, even if seemingly idealistic.
Despite excellent planning, some hurdles will take a long time to clear. One or two parts of the plan may need to slip into a later phase. Creating a plan that needs to deviate from the ideal solution in the short term may be disappointing, but could it be the ideal plan in the end?text
It’s not news that every industry has a set of unique acronyms for describing processes, requirements, features, etc. As long as people participating in a conversation sprinkled with these acronyms are from that industry, it’s a good bet everyone understands. Except for the newbie of course.
However, there are plenty of acronyms, words or descriptions that can be a bit too general, which leads to mis-understanding and likely, wasted time. For instance, when doing a Google search for “workflow systems”, the results come back with 452,000 hits to search through. Just so we are on the same page, let’s try to narrow the definition of workflow a little to save us all a lot of time and money.text
Here are some tips for getting your company or personal electronic files and documents better organized in 2019. These tips will really make life easier if you are currently storing your company files and documents on a network drive or you use a document management system but never really configured it for your business.text
Let’s face it, if we encounter 10 of our co-workers during the day, it would be impossible to categorize all 10 as highly structured, organized rule followers. It might be more realistic to say maybe three of the 10 fit that description. If you extrapolate those numbers out in a company of 1,000 employees, that is 700 employees that can take a unique approach to structure and organization. No big deal unless any one of those 1,000 employees needs to go back to find a document because the CEO has a question.
An easy way to turn all 1,000 employees into super organized, happy rule followers is to use electronic workflows where-ever possible. The end result of workflow is the final, approved set of information upon which all employees can rely. There will be no more guessing on which supporting documents were the basis for the final credit approval or what version of a spreadsheet was the final one used in the report. All users will be able to confidently say to the CEO, Yes, this is absolutely, positively the one.text
If you’re a fraudster you can easily obtain a fake driver’s license or passport. You can create a fake social media profile complete with fake friends. It’s difficult to confirm the actual identity of someone without a DNA profile or finger print on file with the FBI. And that is for confirming someone in person much less remotely.
The widespread use of electronic signatures has taken longer than some people expected and that is partially due to the ability to verify the signers. If we could feel as comfortable with the validity of the electronic signature as we do with a wet signature, electronically signed documents would become the norm. But electronic signatures come in varying degrees of authenticity so which one do you use?text
Do you ever marvel at the number of choices available in the bottled water aisle at any grocery store or online market? There are dozens of options to choose from. How about barbeque sauces, bourbon, pizza or crackers? There are far too many choices and it gets frustrating and time consuming to make any kind of decision.
This has some similarities to the frustration many people experience when they are searching for a file at work. They may find a copy of the file duplicated in multiple places. Determining which copy is the final version is both time consuming and frustrating. The process of de-duplicating is not an easy task, but reducing our choices has obvious benefits and it can be done.text
It seems simple to envision the tools required by a mobile worker. The basics quickly jump to mind including a phone, a laptop, chargers of course and a Starbucks or Panera card. Then you need a location, which could include a home office, an office suites membership or the aforementioned coffee shop.
The real tools of the trade are more software oriented. It’s critical to have a fully cloud based infrastructure or a VPN that provides access to your CRM, accounting system/ERP, messaging app, email and of course documents. The emergence of technology and the disappearance of ledger books, the Rolodex and filing cabinets resulted in amazing efficiency gains. Now that these tools are also available to mobile users, has efficiency peaked?text
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