Be more efficient in uncertain times with an online database

As we claw our way back to some form of normality, the challenge of COVID-19 remains and probably will be with us for some time yet. So learning to do business differently is vital to weather this storm! An online database is no longer a nice to have, but a must have to get through.

I am a bit of a control freak and perfectionist. So holding on to some form of control over my business has felt like a lifeline during these uncertain times! Our online database has provided us with the insight we need to ensure that we spend our precious time on things that really matter.

Stop guessing with an online database

There has never been a better time to review your internal processes and optimise your time and cost leaks. Not to mention addressing all the new laws to comply with COVID-19 restrictions.

Of course you know there’s tonnes of ways you can hack time and save on outgoings. In our view though, there is one defining factor and that is how well organised your business data is. After all, if you have messy spreadsheets or worse, loose paper receipts lying around, how can you make educated decisions for your business?

Without an effective system to organise data and generate reports on your business, you’re only guessing!

What does a ‘data system’ even mean?

Your data systems are the software that runs your business. This is not necessarily your accounting software (MYOB, Xero, Quickbooks), although that is one important example. Simply, your data systems are applications you use to track marketing/CRM, clients, inventory/ERP, timesheets, OHS, HR… all the things.

While there are subscription software options for all of the above, an online database is simply a data system that is TAILOR-MADE to fit your business. Instead of paying for features you’ll never use, you get a system that fits your business like a glove, and enables you to see the information you need, when you need it.

Save TIME with a custom database

An online database means you can access your data, from anywhere, anytime. That saves you time commuting to the office to check in. If you get your staff using the system, it can also save data entry time – get the boys to clock in and out on their phone onsite. Receive customer registrations at the tradeshow on an iPad, direct to your CRM. Send an invoice to your residential customer on the spot.

Saving time in data management comes down to ‘touch once’ processes. The fewer times you need to ‘touch’ a task, the more efficiently you will use your time. An online database enables you to automate some systems, so that you and your team need only ‘touch once’.

Save MONEY with an all-in-one database system

It’s a no brainer that if you’re ‘touching once’ and automating processes, you save money on wages. However, you also save money sleuthing through paperwork on your desk and searching through your computer files for old spreadsheets. An online database can have custom reports developed, so that with just a couple of clicks, you can easily access the information you need. If you use your systems everyday, you’ll get a LIVE picture of your current position, enabling you to make important business decisions.

Save on ongoing software costs

Big businesses can blow tens, even hundreds of thousands on custom coded masterpiece software for each of their data needs. However, for us little guys, we need a more cost-effective solution, which until fairly recently, has meant subscribing to online software.

While paid software subscriptions can get the job done, they all invariably have features that you need, not included. So, if you need a CRM for client relationships, and a system for managing HR/OHS requirements and a project management system – thats three separate subscriptions, which can really add up!

Let’s say you have a team of 5 that need access to your sales software and project management system.

  • SalesForce = $35-$105 (small business pricing, AUD) per month, per user. For five users, thats starting from $175/month
  • Monday = has a free option, but very limited. starting from $14 per month, per user. Thats $70/month.

Just between software to manage your client relationships/sales funnels and projects you would spend just under $3000 per year on this software for a team of 5 on the basic level. Thats two separate systems, each that require you to learn and train your team, and pay this amount forever, which increases as you expand!). Ouch!

The GREAT news – get a custom online database, without the custom app price tag.

As mentioned above, custom developers charge a premium price for custom codework – and rightly so. If you’ve ever looked into how complex coding can get, then you’ll understand they earn every dollar!

With millions of small businesses priced out of this market, there is an emerging ‘low code’ movement, which enables teams like Thorn Creative to rapidly develop custom online systems for small businesses at a fraction of the cost of traditional software.

If all you need is a simple spreadsheet style system, you can even build it yourself! We develop low code solutions on the Ninox database platform, which you can trial for 30 days free here.

The real price difference.

Using the example above, needing a project management system and a CRM for your business team of 5 to access, the ongoing monthly cost of Ninox is just $8 per user per month (USD). In AUD at the time of writing this, thats about $12 per user, per month, or just $720 per year.

Subscribing to Sales force and Monday: Starts from $2940 per year

Ninox platform: $720 per year, plus initial development costs.

But more than that, by developing a custom database system that meets both of these needs, you save time and money in training your staff to use two different systems.

The cost to develop a system like this?

There are features in both Monday and Sales force that you would be paying for, that you may not ever need to use. So to offer a quote here of replacing these systems with all of their features here is really missing the point of this post! We would need to talk with you, define what features you absolutely must have, and create a strategy based around that. You can schedule a call with us to chat about your needs, and depending on your budget we can offer consultancy to help YOU develop your own system.

With Ninox, you can reclaim the power over your data, save money and time


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