As a business, you can never have too much success. Competitive companies are always looking for ways to get an edge, streamline processes and boost productivity. They know how important it is to use every possible advantage.
Today, businesses have more tools at their disposal than any other time in history. Many of the newest technological tools focus on helping businesses gather, track and interpret information. The more you know about your employees, systems and customers, the easier it is to position a business for success.
Use the three tools below to start gathering data and increase your odds of succeeding:
Ongoing Employee Training
A company is only as good as its employees. While it’s ideal for employees to have working knowledge when they’re hired, it’s in the company’s best interest to make sure they expand on their training.
But it’s not enough for companies to just offer training. You gain the most value when you track the results and measure the rewards. That’s where application programming interfaces (APIs) come into play.
APIs are what are used to create software that can work across programs, so that information can be shared. APIs in learning management software are being used to gauge what employees learn, both online and offline. These types of tools take employee training from being a simple perk to actionable information that can help improve employee education, retention and productivity.
Investing in employee training also encourages idea management. Without fresh ideas and new ways of doing business, companies can’t innovate. Employees that are up to date on their training are more likely to find creative solutions to problems, and/or discover the next big idea for your business.
Virtually Connected Voice Systems
Even though customers don’t necessarily have to call in to place an order, those that do tend to be highly motivated leads. They may also be a current customer with a question. Or they could be a customer that has a complaint.
In all three of those scenarios, a company can gain valuable information that aids in their success – but only if the company can capture the data and information. New virtual phone systems are making it possible for companies to get enterprise-level communication features at a small business price.
Virtual phone systems use cloud technology to connect to existing cellphones and landlines. In addition to creating a professional phone directory and setting up extensions, companies can track when calls come in, where people are calling from and what was said during the conversation.
You not only find out about sticking points that are hindering success, but these types of advanced features can also be used to develop training for the call center or create FAQ pages that minimize the need for customer service calls. Given that a recent survey from eConsultancy found that the phone is still the most preferred customer communication channel, any improvements that can be made in your call center can have a big impact on your success.
Reputation Management Software
Social media is still a relatively new landscape for many businesses, but billions of consumers worldwide are speaking their piece on social media platforms. They’re influencing their friends, family and anyone else who sees their comments.
What people say on social media matters. It may seem like a single person’s opinion won’t make a huge difference, but it can. The Pew Research Center has found that social media influences 78% of consumers. Understandably, consumers believe what their peers have to say about a product or service more than what they read in an ad.
With new social media sites being created seemingly every day, trying to keep up with what people are saying about your brand can be near impossible. Luckily, a number of software programs have been created to help companies with their online reputation management. Programs like HootSuite and Sprout Social can monitor social media activity surrounding your brand name.
Whenever your brand is mentioned, you’ll receive an alert so you can intervene quickly and resolve a problem or answer a question. Taking this kind of initiative doesn’t go unnoticed. The majority of customers are willing to work with a business again if they work to resolve complaints.
Information is power, and the tools above can help you learn a lot more about your business, your employees and your customers. The more you invest in using that information to your advantage, the easier it is to succeed.