Overnight, the COVID-19 crisis forced the world to change how it conducts business. As we all begin to move forward together, new priorities and practices have taken shape. Some have changed our interactions with customers. Some have altered our long-established processes. Nearly all have, and will, in some way affect our bottom lines.
New opportunities are undoubtedly arising—as are unfamiliar challenges. Those who have kept an open mind have been able to weather the storm, pivot, adjust, and implement. A part of their success has included trusted partnerships, from supply chain vendors to financial relationships, while dealing with Covid is the new normal, economic challenges continue to impact businesses, consumer spending, and forecasts. Now is the time to find and work with a trusted partner to make sure you have a solid plan of action in place—and the funds to help you navigate uncertainty.
For most professional services practices, two of the most common challenges are planning and funding. If you uncover an opportunity, how will you finance it? If you experience a challenge, where can you turn? Finding the right solutions to balance these potential changes to income streams is essential, as is managing debt and cashflow in a safe and efficient manner. A crucial first step is having a banking expert on your side to help you map out your financial strategy.
Though not an overnight process, one of the most meaningful ways you can transform your firm right now is by adopting new technologies that can advance your business by leaps and bounds. As your financial partner, we would recommend developing a comprehensive implementation plan that includes strong fiscal accountability, SMART planning, and expert level professionals who fully understand the new technology and how it will solve your existing challenges. Additionally, a comprehensive, yet digestible, onboard training program to quickly teach your employees how to use the technology is essential to overall financial health. Otherwise, those shiny, new digital capabilities could end up costing you a lot of money and, in the end, be pushed to the back of the proverbial desk drawer and forgotten.
There are a number of strategies for implementing digital transformation, but the thoughtful approach to adding innovations requires asking strategic questions.
First and foremost, what business problem are you trying to solve? Are you still hanging on to an outdated way of working that’s holding back your staff? Have you neglected a service or tool that could potentially make things easier for your clients? Or are you simply looking to streamline existing services?
It’s also critical to consider any associated costs. Be sure to take a good hard look at it from both sides—Can you afford to do it? Can you afford to not do it?
Analyzing how you currently work and asking the tough questions will lead you to better answers. And better answers will lead you to more personalized technology solutions.
Once you’ve identified the area(s) you’re looking to improve, you can then move on to identifying your available options. Depending on the size of your firm, you may want to consider launching a pilot program to test the chosen technology. This will allow you and your team to work out any bugs before unleashing it companywide. Another added benefit of testing new tech with smaller teams is that everyone who participates becomes a source for information—someone who can be leaned on when it comes time for the larger scale rollout.
It’s essential that whatever tech you decide to adopt—be it project/case management software, treasury management solutions, or any of the available digital tools and apps—you must invest in the training to make sure everyone feels comfortable with the new way of working. Not everyone has the same level of comfort with technology, and if your decision is introducing a new way of working, it may take a while before everyone arrives at the same level. Don’t let this discourage you or your team. Thriving tomorrow requires training today. So be prepared to invite questions, then listen to and interpret feedback to help you fine tune how the new tech integrates into your current processes.
With nearly 100 years of servicing businesses - large and small - throughout Florida, Seacoast has the financial knowledge and expertise to help guide you and your business right now. Our technology and information capabilities rival the nation’s biggest banks, and our focus on the community means we never lose sight of what’s most important to you.
We offer a host of digital capabilities for moving your firm into the future—including a full range of treasury management tools offering cash management in a safe and secure environment. From Remote Deposit Capture and Positive Pay to ACH Payment Processing, we’ll find the innovative solutions that make the most sense for you, your staff, and your clients.
Reach out today to start experiencing what it’s like to have a banking partner that’s always got your back.