One. It’s Not the Loneliest Number.

Whether or not you’re a fan of 1960s music, you have likely heard “One is the loneliest number…” And, often, that’s true. However, when it comes to business, “one” creates the opportunity to work with countless people and collaborate in ways you’ve never imagined.

Intrigued? I hope so. Let’s dive in!

How Did We Get Here?

When we start our businesses, we tend to cobble together a patchwork of systems to create our workflows. We know out of the gate that developing efficient internal processes are necessary for productivity.

For scheduling our day, we might rely on Outlook or Google Calendar. In addition, most of us are probably guilty of using our calendar app as a task to-do list, too.

Your accounting solution might initially be Quickbooks or even Excel, using basic spreadsheets. When starting our entrepreneurial journeys, it’s difficult to see beyond today. It’s not uncommon to miss the future shortcomings of your accounting app when today’s business is seemingly small and easy to manage.

The sales staff may likely use Word or Excel to put their proposals together. Or maybe a basic email appears to be sufficient. And what about sales contacts? Did you maintain a comprehensive address book or simply search through old emails to find a name or phone number when you started?

When your business is green, your marketing efforts often begin slowly and grow over time. To deploy a weekly newsletter, you may sign up for an email service, like MailChimp or Constant Contact. You may try your hand at social media marketing and procure an organization and scheduling service like HootSuite. As those efforts begin to bear fruit, you add on PPC ad campaigns which you manage independently through the Google AdWords dashboard and the Facebook Business Manager.

While we can further reminisce over how your business has evolved, I’m sure you can see the various platforms you’ve tied together to make your company function. So, ask yourself: Are all the members of your team reading from the same playbook?

Discovering Inefficiency

It’s possible you may not know whether your team is reading from the same playbook. Your business is thriving, work is completed, and you despise fixing what you perceive as not being broken.

So, let’s explore where you are and where you could be.

Starting with how your company manages its calendars, is personnel availability transparent between your staff? How about with your customers? Sharing calendar access or creating department-specific shared calendars can be easily set up using Office 365 or Google Workspace. However, while that can work for internal visibility, scheduling externally with customers and prospects becomes challenging—often requiring yet another application.

Hopefully, you’re not managing your books with spreadsheets. If you are, I think you already understand how disconnected your financial data is from the rest of your organization. You have already experienced the difficulty of mining business insights.

If you’re on a beginner accounting platform like Quickbooks, it may not be obvious how disconnected your financial data is from your inventory. While your purchase orders are entered and deployed from this application, providing a rudimentary understanding of COGS (cost of goods sold), you lack proper knowledge of your manufacturing materials. It’s complicated and inefficient when trying to locate specific lots, especially during the unfortunate event of a product recall.

As your sales team grows, it’s common for each person to develop their own data management strategy. And, when the money is flowing in, it’s equally common for the corner office to leave them to their own devices. When territories switch or personnel resigns, the pain of decentralized sales data becomes felt.

During a resignation or termination, the need to replace sales personnel quickly becomes paramount. Sales is one position where getting up to speed slowly negatively impacts your top line. Imagine the difficulty a new hire will face trying to locate contact data, past customer interactions, legacy contracts, and the like.

When your marketing team has grown and assembled a series of services, as previously mentioned, they quickly find themselves with a messy web to manage. While your team is doing a stellar job deploying compelling content and creating a presence on key platforms, they are missing the opportunity to track leads holistically. And it’s not entirely their fault—the tools available to them aren’t designed to play nice with others. Plus, in the context of the rest of your organization, you have already built a culture of siloed information.

Getting Down to One

Okay, we have discussed how common it is for businesses to find themselves with many disconnected solutions and why. We have also touched upon the dangers of independent and, frankly, inept applications.

Where do you go from here?

When it comes to developing efficient processes, less is more. And having one platform that works for all is best.

Mature businesses have already discovered Salesforce as the platform of choice to simplify their previous web of apps and pull teams together. Salesforce began its life as a comprehensive CRM (customer relationship management) tool, a blessing to those responsible for sales and marketing. CRM provides contact, lead, and campaign management, customer interaction history, and much more.

Over time, Salesforce has evolved into a powerful communications platform for internal and remote teams, customer service solutions, a central data repository, and more.

Some reading this article may already have Salesforce and say, “yes, we started this way…we evolved that way…we know this already.” Suppose that’s you, Bravo! But have you pulled all of your teams onto Salesforce? If not, you’re missing out.

Salesforce has transcended beyond its CRM roots to become the development platform of choice. With Salesforce as your foundation, it’s easy to add the applications necessary for each of your departments—allowing them to pull information from the same source of truth.

Are you in the manufacturing space? How about non-profit, food and beverage, or pharmaceutical? If these are your niches, you will need the power of an ERP (enterprise resource planning) to manage your product inventory, donor tracking, compliance, and recall needs, respectively.

Getting started with ERP is easy when adding GoldFinch ERP to your Salesforce platform. Onboarding is simple as your employees are already experts with the Salesforce user interface, and real-time collaboration becomes a reality thanks to centralized data.

Accounting needs? No problem! With applications like Xledger and AccountingSeed, also built to work with Salesforce and GoldFinch, your finance folks can count the beans while the corner office can quickly review the forecasts. Changes in inventory and materials update on-the-fly for everyone involved.

Let’s Go!

Simplicity comes through the powerful platform of Salesforce. When you’re running an efficient business, getting every employee working from the same platform with the same data at the same time allows you to eliminate your previously required applications.

Consolidating your needs into a single platform maximizes collaboration and communication thanks to one solution. And there’s no loneliness with that.

To get started, contact us today, and let’s get your teams together!

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