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Start your Business and Keep it Going with These Essential Tools for Small Business

Three small business owners talk about the tools they can't live without when running their business.
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If you have a business or are thinking of starting a business these tools for small business owners can help save both time and money. Having efficient tools for your small business will help minimize the time spent on administrative tasks and help provide more time to focus on what’s important — running your business. We asked three small business owners what their must-have tool is; see what they had to say.

Schedule Client Appointments with ScheduleOnce

Katie Brewer, CFP®, president of Your Richest Life Planning uses this small business tool as a scheduling assistant and as a way to provide a convenient customer service experience. ScheduleOnce allows people who are interested in booking an appointment with Brewer to do so directly through her website — without having to coordinate with Brewer or anyone from her team. As long as the time slot is available in her schedule, potential and existing clients can choose their own appointment time instantly; it even adapts to different time zones.

One of the best things about ScheduleOnce is it’s a real time saver for small business owners and as an added bonus it’s an excellent service for customers. Users don’t have to spend hours coordinating schedules; it’s as easy as click and go. “I think it has saved me 40-60 hours in coordination time last year,” says Brewer.

Once clients choose an appointment time, small business owners get an email notification to approve the meeting request. The client then gets an email with an official confirmation along with a calendar meeting request and several email reminders before the scheduled appointment.

Keep Projects Organized with Basecamp

Basecamp is a cloud-based project management system that allows business owners to work with their teams remotely and track the progress of current projects. It allows business owners to create projects, assign tasks, and make sure projects stay within deadlines via the shared calendar feature.

Amanda Abella is a business coach to millennial entrepreneurs and the author of the bestselling book Make Money Your Honey. She uses Basecamp with her virtual assistant and web designer for almost everything to keep her business functioning daily. “We keep track of projects, revise drafts, set up calendars for launches, save important documents, and set up reminders for monthly tasks.”

Abella loves this tool for her small business because it’s convenient since she travels a lot; Basecamp can be used on the go from a website browser, phone, or tablet. “What I like best is that if I’m on the road at a conference my (team) and I are in contact so the business doesn’t stop running just because I’m traveling.”

Keep Documents Safe with Dropbox

Dropbox is an online tool for small business owners that allows users to store documents virtually and access them from anywhere with an Internet connection. Running a small business is a 24/7 job; if you need to work on the go or work from various locations, Dropbox lets you access documents securely.

Jeff Rose is a Certified Financial Planner and the owner of Good Financial Cents. After a long day at the office he uploads documents to his personal Dropbox and then retrieves them when he gets home. For Rose, it’s a lot easier (and more secure) than commuting with important documents.

“I love Dropbox for my business because I easily upload any document that my team or I might need. We’ve created several shared folders where selected team members have access and can upload anything that we might need at a later time,” says Rose. “It also acts as a backup in the event we need to find an important document that a client might need.” Rose swears by Dropbox to help keep his documents organized and safe.

These are some tools for small business owners that can help your business get running and help your team stay organized. For more information about starting a business, including how to find and hire staff, check out our HR services, for additional insights on small biz must haves.

 

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