If given an extra hour in the day, 43% said they would choose to spend it with their family, with only 14% opting to put all the time back into their business. To gain this extra hour, 35% of small business owners said they plan to invest in better technology solutions over the next 12 months.
The research showed that most small businesses understand the power of mobile technologies to save time and work on the go, with 80% using laptops, 75% using smartphones, and 40% using a tablet. The average small business, however, still spends almost half of their time (47%) bogged down with business administration.
“Finishing jobs sooner or getting more done each hour is imperative in any business and the easiest way to do that is by reducing time spent on administrative tasks,” said Will Irving, Group Managing Director, Telstra Business.
“Small business owners are half way there. The survey shows they are using a smartphone or tablet for 8.5 hours during the working week, but they are not taking full advantage of these devices, as only 46% are using mobile business applications and only 25% are using cloud computing to be able to efficiently share critical business information amongst their team.”
Mobile solutions can unlock the extra hour for small businesses to invest back into their lifestyle, which was one of the reasons they chose to set up their own business in the first place.
“Mobile business apps like Canvas, for example, produce invoices on the spot from your smartphone or tablet and make carbon copy books and re-typing orders into a computer a thing of the past. It’s these smart features on mobile devices that have the potential to give businesses back at least an hour in their work day,” added Mr Irving.
“With Christmas just around the corner, getting some extra time to spend with the family is especially important. Cloud computing software such as Microsoft Office 365 combined with mobile tablets or laptops lets you get out of the office but keep on top of urgent emails and documents from wherever you are on holiday.”
Will Irving’s top 5 time-saving tips to beat the clock
1. Don’t Let Technology Own You:
Make sure that the technology tools you choose are set up specifically for you and your business. Get expert advice on making the most of each device using apps and functions that can save you time and money.
Cloud computing and mobile devices such as tablets now let you run the business or be on call with the ability to quickly do real work if needed, whether at the office, at home or while travelling.
3. There is a business app for that:
Business apps can make doing business easier when out of the office. Telstra’s Mobile Business Apps including Zunos, Canvas and GeoOP, take business processes mobile, even replacing pen and paper forms – so you can work during traditional ‘down time’ as well as save time on admin.
4. Take the time to be flexible:
The old notion that a full-time working week is nine to five, 40 hours a week, tied to one location, is fading fast, as customers expect 24/7 service with both employees and employers are seeing the benefits of harnessing a more flexible culture, which in turn improves work/life balance.
5. Beat the traffic:
Face-to-face time is crucial in building relationships in business, but travel time is often lost time. Making the most of mobile apps while travelling, or even better, using high quality video conferencing to avoid business travel will save not only travel costs, but also get you home earlier at the end of the day.