Looking for good small business management software for your company to run the business processes effectively and need advice on how to choose the right solution for your specific needs?
Selecting the best business management tools for your small business can be tricky if you consider their integration. It’s highly important that all business apps integrate with each other to ensure a free data flow. Management tools are designed to automate operations and save time but if you use a mix of different solutions it may be problematic to make them work together and all your efforts may be wasted. Luckily, there are all-in-one business management tools that come loaded with everything you need to stay on the top of the things so you don’t have to worry about integrations.
Read on to learn how to choose the best software for small business. We will discuss the advantages of ready-made and custom software solutions and provide you with reviews of the best tools available for small businesses.
What Is Business Management Software?
Business management software is an app or a set of programs within one solution that streamline and execute a variety of business functions such as data tracking, scheduling, employee management etc. It combines enterprise resource planning, customer relationship management, human resource, and accounting functionality in one software system.
Companies of all sizes can benefit from investing in business management software that allows managing all the essential business processes in one system. As IT technology continues to evolve, businesses can take advantage of more management software tools that can handle everyday business operations and make them simpler.
Here are 4 key advantages you can expect if you adopt a well-designed business management software system.
- Process efficiency. Every day your employees perform a lot of processes and if you use standalone applications, they need to re-enter data into multiple systems. As a result, they may make a lot of errors. Integrated business management software automates the key processes and provides an easy access to reliable business information for all employees.
- Time and cost savings. You can save significant costs on your IT investment. An integrated system can be easily installed and set up. There is no need to spend time on installation, maintenance, and integration of multiple and quite often less effective tools. Instead, IT time and budgets can be spent on improving business processes.
- Real-time visibility. If your company uses different business applications, it can be difficult to get an accurate overall picture and understand how your business is performing. With management software for small business, you will be able to track all your business data and processes. Your employees will be better informed and will be able to make accurate decisions.
- Scalability. Integrated solutions are scalable – they grow as your business grows. You can adapt the software to meet the needs of your evolving business processes by adding new advanced features, increasing the number of user and sales channels.
How to Choose the Right Small Business Management Software
Currently, a wide spectrum of business management software is available on the market so you should consider many factors when making choice. Of course, the software should be appropriate for the size of your business. Besides, you should take into account your deployment needs and preferences as well as tasks and processes that you want to automate. And you should make sure that your small business management software has the following features:
- time tracking capabilities
- task management
- sales and CRM
- resource management
- budget management
- file storage and sharing
- business intelligence and dashboards
You have to document your business processes to identify areas where management software can help improve them. Besides, it will be easier for you to explain your requirements to potential suppliers. Keep in mind that as your business grows, your requirements may change and you may need more advanced features in the future.
When choosing a package, you should compare your requirements list with features included in each package and reject all software packages that don’t meet your “must have” requirements. You should choose an affordable business management software solution which has the biggest number of necessary and “nice to have” features. Don’t forget to consider additional costs such as maintenance costs, future software upgrade costs, and the costs of hardware upgrades.
If you are not sure which management software best suits your small business, a good idea is to get professional advice from software business consultants. Experts from Quandary CG can help you choose the right solution for your specific business needs.
Want to know more? Get in touch!
Best Software for Small Business
Let’s have a look at the best business management tools for small business. These solutions cover almost everything: collaboration, invoicing, customer relationship management, project management, marketing, and more. Besides, these solid solutions with high security and regular updates can be easily customized to meet your specific requirements.
Bitrix24 offers more than 35 tools for management, communication, and social collaboration in one suit. It is free for 12 users and both Android and iOS apps are free as well. The software has a large set of features and there are apps for CRM, project management, document management, business processes automation, email marketing, invoicing, and more.
WORK[etc] is all in one cloud-based business management solution with a lot of scalable features for small and medium-sized businesses. It has integrated CRM, project management, sales and marketing, help desk, and invoicing modules. The software supports collaboration between project management, finance, sales, marketing, and support teams. There are apps for iOS and Android so you can access the system even on the go.
Apptivo is a cloud sales and marketing tool for small businesses and freelancers. It can connect sales, procurement, supply chain, financials, and marketing into a single app. All features of Apptivo are completely accessible for iOS and Android devices. Apptivo is integrated with Office365 & G Suite. The tool offers invoicing and reporting features but you need to buy separate accounting software.
Zoho One is a suite of tightly integrated business and productivity apps that you can use to automate business processes, collaborate, and communicate with your team. There are more than 40 mobile, native and web apps in a single offering that can help small businesses run all aspects of their operations – improving sales, marketing products, control back-end processes and more. It offers a large number of high-end features and customization options.
Scoro is a web-based business management solution with a user-friendly interface that helps to streamline work and avoid performing routine tasks. It combines a wide range of features you may need to manage your company: project management, financial management, work scheduling, detailed reporting and custom dashboards, CRM. Users can add custom fields to practically all features and create custom templates for reports, orders, invoices, and quotes.
BlueCamroo is powerful all in one business process automation software for solopreneurs and small businesses that can help them manage their contacts, sales leads, customers, projects, and opportunities. It combines CRM, time tracking, project management, email marketing, social media monitoring, billing and invoicing. It integrates with different third-party apps and online payment gateways. You can customize user interface themes and create email, invoice, and project templates.
Odoo is a comprehensive suite of integrated business apps that cover all your company needs. This open source software includes several thousands of modules for manufacturing, sales, CRM, human resource management, project management, website builder, ecommerce and more. All apps are perfectly integrated to each other so you can start with one application and add other modules later and fully automate all your business processes. You can customize the user interface, business processes workflows, and reports.
NetSuit offers a scalable cloud-based solution for small businesses that is able to meet the evolving requirements of modern fast-growing companies. The highly flexible and customizable software can help you manage the core business processes with a fully integrated system that covers enterprise resource planning, customer relationship management, HR, financials, inventory, ecommerce, and more. It offers comprehensive functionality with industry-specific support for a wide range of industries.
Custom-Built vs Off-the-Shelf Software for Small Business
In spite of the fact that there are a lot of off-the-shelf software solutions available on the market, many business owners prefer custom software development. Wondering why? Let’s compare ready-made and bespoke business management software and discuss their advantages and disadvantages.
Pros and cons of off-the-shelf business management software
Off-the-shelf business management software is a product for the mass market. It is developed to reach a wide audience across a variety of industries and meet the demands of as many users as possible. You can start using a commercial software product right away and the most appealing feature of off-the-shelf solutions is their price. They require a lower initial investment than tailor-made software because they often have affordable monthly subscription plans. Sometimes, you can even try the off-the-shelf software for free for a limited time to understand if it works with your business model.
Off-the-shelf software products typically offer a lot of features but, unfortunately, the functionality of packaged software may not be exactly what you need. You may have to pay for features that you don’t need for your business and will never use. And if your business is rather unique, you may not find all the necessary features in a single package. Besides, the off-the-shelf software may work for your company today but as your business grows, you may encounter problems if your software is not designed to meet your future needs.
Still, many off-the-shelf solutions can be customized to cover your needs. Customized business management software is fast to set up and better fits to your needs than fully off-the-shelf software.
Have a project in mind? Let’s discuss it!
Pros and cons of custom business management software
Custom business management software is developed specifically for your company according to your requirements. Of course, you’ll pay more for a custom-designed software solution and you’ll need more time to implement it, but you’ll definitely get more value from it. And you should keep in mind that although initial costs with a custom solution are higher, it could be less expensive in the long run because you will not need to pay license fees, upgrade fees, and user fees that are common for off-the-shelf solutions.
Bespoke software for small business has a lot of advantages. Here are some of them:
- The custom software offers maximum flexibility. You can develop features and functionality that meet your business’ specific workflow needs.
- You own the software and its source code, just don’t forget to include this item into the contract. You can add new features and change your custom software when you need it to keep up with your business dynamics.
- Custom software is unique for your company so it features a higher level of security.
- You can save a lot of time and money on integration because custom business management software directly integrates with your existing processes and can be easily integrated with other software that you are planning to use.
- It gives your company a competitive advantage.
- Tailor-made business management software is scalable and will support your business growth, adapting or evolving to meet the needs of your future business processes.
As you see, there is a great difference between custom-made and off-the-shelf small business management software. Although the commercial software is cheaper, it may not meet all your specific business needs. On the other hand, development of a tailor-made solution requires much more time and money, but it’s your investment in the future of your small business in the long term. Custom business management software can give your company additional resources to accelerate its growth..
At Quandary CG, we can both develop custom solutions and customize your existing software to work better and give your business a significant advantage over your competitors. Schedule a free consultation to learn how we can help you build the most powerful platform for your small business that will allow you to grow faster and easier.
5 Ways To Improve Your Business Immediately
The easiest steps a business can take to optimize growth is by streamlining its monotonous daily processes. Understanding automation will allow your business to thrive in the 21st century!