The smallest startup is still a business, and has to function as one. Most startups have limited resources, so entrepreneurs typically learn to take care of business with a lot of sweat equity and creativity. Early partners usually wear many hats, and often they must do without some of the things that bigger or more established businesses take for granted.
It’s not uncommon for new business owners to turn to spreadsheets for many office and business functions. There’s certainly a place for spreadsheets, because they can do things that other types of documents simply cannot. However, they have limitations when it comes to things like ensuring everyone has the same, most recently updated version of a spreadsheet.
Agility and Responsivity Are Mandatory
Startups may compete with much larger, more established businesses that have deeper pockets and more resources at their disposal. But one of the prime advantages of a smaller startup is its flexibility and agility. Often, startups are able to be responsive on time scales that bigger enterprises, with their layers of management, cannot match.
How do online forms help? For one thing, you can assume that a successful larger enterprise probably uses them because they don’t want to be bogged down with paper-based processes. For another, as nimble as a large enterprise can be with online forms and workflows, the lean startup can demonstrate even more agility and responsivity. Whatever online forms do for big businesses, they do it even better for smaller ones.
Minimize Paper Right from the Start
Many new businesses start out with a commitment to sustainability, and one of the best investments any company can make in sustainability is minimizing use of paper. Start your business with highly regarded form creator software, and you can avoid significant paper use right from the start. For most businesses, there simply is no reason to use paper forms for things like employee applications, timekeeping, or maintaining financial records.
Another advantage to making processes online and automated from the start is that you automatically create a traceable record when you do so. You can even add intelligent actions to online forms and workflows to create a usable audit trail. This can be tremendously time-saving should you ever face an industry or governmental audit. And nobody will have to shuffle through filing cabinets looking for just the right piece of paper because it’s all readily accessible in electronic form.
Online Forms Beget Automated Workflows
Most businesses find that once they take one paper-based process and make it electronic, they see the potential for doing so across departments and functions. What’s more, they begin to see how these online forms can be connected together into full-fledged automated workflows.
For example, suppose you create an online form for workers who travel on business to submit their travel expenses for reimbursement. It’s not that much of a stretch to make those forms automatically go to approving authorities who can do their work and document it as part of an electronic reimbursement workflow. Ultimately, employees can be reimbursed without anyone having to put pen to paper.
Leave Nothing to Chance
The startup that dedicates itself to electronic rather than paper forms and workflows leaves much less to chance than do businesses that do it old school. Content marketing strategies can be mapped out and made into workable procedures, new employee onboarding can be done more quickly, and software licenses can be recorded so that automatic renewal reminders are sent to key personnel in plenty of time. In other words, the more a startup business learns to use online forms and workflows, the less they will leave to chance or risk forgetting about.
PerfectApps is workflow management software that lets you create everything from the simplest online form to the most complex automated workflow. Businesses of all sizes and in all industries have used PerfectApps to save money, reduce their environmental footprint, and make business processes faster and easier to track. We invite you to watch our demo video and see how PerfectApps is the ideal partner for making your business as efficient and agile as it needs to be to succeed in a competitive business climate.