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Apps to Help SMEs Do More, More Efficiently

22 December 2015

It is sometimes worthwhile taking a moment to reflect upon how much the business world has changed in the past decade. 10 years ago, billing customers using an app, not having a landline in the office, or not requiring staff to enter the office before they started their work day would have seemed unthinkable.

But mobile screen-based applications, or “apps” have piggybacked on the unprecedented adoption of smartphones and tablet computers. And while these apps are great for unwinding with a simple game (Fruit Ninja anyone?) or checking the beach report for the weekend, there are an increasing suite of apps that can help Australian businesses do more business, more effectively and more efficiently.

So what are some of the leading contenders that you should consider for your small business or medium sized enterprise?

Documents

One of the most common pain points for small businesses and medium sized enterprises is effective document sharing between team members, suppliers or customers. Undoubtedly, email solved some of these problems, but long and sometimes meandering email chains often cause as many headaches as they solve.

Apps like DropBox go a long way to solving this. DropBox allows you to “drop” files into a shared folder that can be accessed by anyone with a computer and the app installed, whether they are using a phone, tablet or desktop computer.

Accessing a particular file requires a password, which the person who sets up the file will be able to give anyone who they wish to have access. In simple terms, it lets you put all your documents in one “house” (DropBox) but limit access to the “rooms” (folders) only to those who need it.

Evernote is another multipurpose storage and document sharing app that allows bookmarks, photos, notes and even audio files to be stored forever and catalogued in a range of ways.

Payments

It won’t be news to anyone reading this website that for SMEs, cash is king. There are countless apps that help businesses get paid faster, often for less transaction costs than traditional payment gateways.

PayPal is a global company with millions of daily users that has processed billions of transactions in dozens of currencies, and is useful whether you operate a local coffee shop or an international gift wares online shop.

Square and Stripe are two alternatives with well-credentialed teams behind their development, while Braintree helps your website set up a payment gateway so you can sell directly online.

Tax

Deductions are a legitimate way to minimize your taxable income, but when it comes to the end of a taxation year in June, it is all too common to have forgotten about the business expense you incurred the previous October, or where you put the receipt for it.

The Australian Taxation Office has developed an app that helps SMEs keep track of their expenses on an ongoing basis, and will help minimize the value of those “lost deductions”.

To speak more about the future of your SME and how to plan effectively for it, the Scott Partners team welcomes your call today to arrange an appointment with our professional, experienced consultants.

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