The quality of communication systems can make or break a business. Get it wrong, and you could be left with frustrated customers, missing orders, underperforming teams, and unnecessary expenditure.
The flip side of the equation, however, is this: by taking some time to figure out exactly the right comms system to suit your business and its processes, you’ll be able to get something in place that enhances pretty much every aspect of how your organization runs…and saves you money, too!
Find out more about why each element is so important and how to pick the perfect communication system for your business below.
First off, think about the phone lines your business uses to communicate internally and with outside clients and organizations. These are vital: they are the foundation of your business’s comms, and yet many managers don’t realize that there are other options available aside from the traditional phone lines that were (until recently) used as standard.
VoIP (voice-over internet protocol) connections are fast replacing ‘traditional’ landlines in both business and home settings today. With more and more people looking for the best residential VoIP service in 2022 than ever before, this technology is starting to become just as popular for home use as it is in the professional environment.
VoIP connections are prized for their greater reliability, comparative cheapness, and the range of features that they come with. These tools are especially beneficial for businesses and include a virtual receptionist service, the ability for staff members to access their phone number and voicemail messages remotely, voice-to-text, and virtual fax features. Plus, a VoIP connection is more secure than its landline counterpart.
Ensuring that your email platform is working hard for your business is the next step in optimizing your business’s comms processes. Email is an important link for both outside clients and agencies to reach you and for staff to communicate quickly and effectively with each other. It’s useful for sharing documents and dropping reminders and short notes to staff members, too.
Think about how you’re currently using your webmail client and what you would like it to offer your business. Next, look at the choices available: there are many free options out there, so you can try a specific platform to get a feel for it and see if it would suit your business before upgrading to a premium or corporate plan, if necessary.
Look for email platforms that will boost team communication and collaboration: you may wish to find one that features shareable calendars, advanced search features, or team chat, to help schedule meetings and with the general flow of information.
Check Your Bandwidth
If your business’s bandwidth isn’t up to par, this could be causing you all sorts of comms-related issues, from slow loading messages and websites to delays when trying to work collaboratively on an online document.
Ask your service provider about your current bandwidth if you’re experiencing slow speeds or load times to see if it can be increased. Alternatively, if you discover that you have access to more bandwidth than you need, you may be able to shift to an alternative plan with your provider, thereby saving some money.
Project Management Tools
When overseeing the running of a project, effective communication is more important than ever. Members of a team must work closely with each other, as well as share information with other departments and outside organizations. Poor communication processes can lead to problems like the inefficient management of resources and duplication of work.
Deploying a project management system is a great way to promote optimal communication; individual team members and departments can see how their assigned tasks relate to each other’s work, as well as to the big picture, and potential problems, delays, and logjams can be identified in good time and headed off.
The Kanban boards and collaborative tools that are a feature of most project management systems are useful visual aids to managing work, and the ability for staff members to comment or work together on a shared document can improve workflow and productivity.
It’s not just tech that’s important in communication systems: having a proper meeting schedule, and ensuring that your staff feels heard and valued, is vital. Holding too many meetings can cause frustration, as well as hamper your team’s ability to get work done. Try to find a happy medium – hold a team meeting once a month and, for other meetings, invite only those staff members whose presence is necessary.
Encourage and promote a culture of openness and transparency so that all employees feel able to communicate with you if they’re experiencing a problem – or have a great idea to improve the business’s processes!
Effective communication can improve all aspects of your business – boosting customer care functions, improving efficiency, and elevating staff morale. Taking some time to ensure that your comms systems are serving your organization as well as they should be will help your staff to get more done, in less time, as well as uphold your business’s reputation.