What Can Business Owners Learn from a Tech Startup?

How is it that a tech startup can compete with businesses owning bigger budgets and greater manpower?

Because they’re lean, agile and powered by the right technology. They know how to maximise productivity and efficiency to consistently deliver innovation and accelerate growth.

Want in on the action? Keep reading to discover what business growth tips you can learn from a tech startup.

Lean and Clean

Have you heard of the concept: Lean Startup? It sounds like a diet regime but it’s actually a methodology created by entrepreneur Eric Ries. Tech startups widely follow it to grow in the most efficient manner.

In start-up mode, the team works together to harness available resources as efficiently as possible. It’s about using what you have to launch your startup rather than investing in things you don’t. It clears the clutter and leaves you with a simple plan focused on learning.

“When in doubt, simplify.” – Eric Ries

Following this methodology, a tech startup’s priority is to build a minimum viable product (MVP).

A polished MVP will have enough quality features to keep early adopters keen. The idea is to then continually ‘Build, Measure and Learn’, using customer feedback to polish the MVP to perfection.

It’s a tactic fuelled by innovation that allows start-ups to fail and learn without wasting resources. As Ries explains:

“The lesson of the MVP is that any additional work beyond what was required to start learning is waste, no matter how important it might have seemed at the time.”

If you decide to adopt the Lean Startup concept, you could gain a powerful competitive advantage. Because growing in this way ensures minimal capital investment AND speed. It allows you to rapidly develop a quality product or service ready for sale so you can start making a profit as soon as possible.

Agile, Not Fragile

The ripples of economic, social and political changes affect all businesses.

In order to respond to these changes quickly and easily, software development startups adopt the Agile Method to avoid becoming irrelevant.

Keeping up with customer expectations and competitor offerings is the name of the game. To do this successfully, a business must jump on every opportunity to save time and drive efficiency, such as:

  • Collaborate: independent teams work closely together, interacting face-to-face to maximise communication
  • Adapt: rather than following a strict plan, teams will respond to changes helping them keep up with customers’ evolving needs
  • Automate: tests are automated to supercharge efficiency allowing the team to quickly explore alternative approaches to a project

Adapting is critical to staying agile, whether it’s changing the approach to a project, redefining goals, changing the environment or altering processes. This requires team members to adopt cross-functional testing skills and continually review progress through customer feedback.

“Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.” – Stephen Hawking

You can apply the principles and values of Agile Methodology to your operations no matter your business. Give your teams the autonomy to become self-organising so they can expedite innovation and bring tangible value to customers. Strive for continuous improvement rather than following a step-by-step plan.

“Agile organization is a growing, learning, adapting living organism that is in constant flux to exploit new opportunities and add new value for customers.” – Steve Denning, Forbes senior contributor

Powered by Technology

Tech startups don’t just rely on technology to build and test innovative products. They are powered by top-shelf software and hardware that helps them:

  • Accelerate employee productivity
  • Process masses of data for valuable insights
  • Boost the efficiency of business processes
  • Drive worthwhile connections with customers
  • Improve customer experiences

If a business doesn’t harness the right tech, they could be losing out. For example, the cost of poor communications is £19,666 per-worker per-year, according to the Holmes Report. To combat this, technical organisations turn to digital solutions to enable fluid communication.

For example, at San-iT, we use Microsoft Teams to bring our people together seamlessly. Within the software, we can set up groups and allocate them to different chat rooms so teams can collaborate on the move from their mobile devices.

Microsoft Graph API is also a tool we use to optimise productivity. It allows us to:

  • Simplify the onboarding process
  • Automate data collection
  • Easily locate critical data (such as staff’s availability)
  • Set-up security alerts
  • And a ton of other productivity-enhancing actions

This is just a small example of the stunning ways technology can help you run your business better. You don’t have to be a tech-based startup to capitalise on digital-transformation. Read more about the tools we use in our blog for more inspiration.

Do as The Techies Do

Finding leaner and more agile ways to grow can be achieved no matter what industry you’re in. Harnessing game-changing technology can be simple with enough research. It’s all possible with or without a technical team.
If you’d like to discuss what we’ve covered today in more detail, we would be more than happy to help. Email us at [email protected], send us a tweet or call us on 0800 084 2575 to get in touch.

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