Summer has finally arrived in the UK and Brits all over the place are no doubt collectively yearning for a beach holiday. But for small business owners, that heady feeling of freedom is often replaced by worry at the prospect of leaving their business at such a critical time.
A OnePoll survey conducted on behalf of Xero showed three quarters (76%) of small business owners and entrepreneurs have sacrificed their holidays to power through and keep their business running smoothly. Annual leave is an employee benefit that entrepreneurs often sacrifice, because it could have a detrimental impact on their bottom line.
But there’s been a lot of innovation in technology over the last few years. Yet many business owners still feel tethered to their office in order to be productive.
With cloud-based technology and the internet, flexible working is now a reality for many small business owners. By using the right business apps, many entrepreneurs can run their business from just a smartphone.
These business apps and cloud services are usually very cheap or even free. This means for a small fee, you can run your business from a deck chair… providing you have an internet connection.
- Google Apps are the king of all business apps. They let you stay involved in your business from anywhere. Create, edit and store your email, documents and spreadsheets, and use Google’s collaboration tools to keep in touch.
- Skype is perfect for cheap or free voice, video and conference calls over the internet if you can’t help but call into work from the hammock.
- Hootsuite or Tweetdeck are tools that help you to easily monitor all your social feeds in one place. Available on your smartphone and tablet, as well as your desktop, you can easily post and respond on the go. Or schedule your posts in advance just in case you get caught up on the waves.
- Evernote is great if you get inspired while on the beach. You can gather photos, web articles, handwritten notes and even business cards and share them with your team. You can even have a discussion through the app about your project so your team is always in sync.
- Xero’s cloud-based business software lets you balance the books, pay bills and send your invoices on the go from your smartphone or tablet. By using the Business Performance dashboard, you can keep track of your business’s health at anytime. You can also link with your bank account to reconcile your bank transactions all before heading to the buffet for breakfast.
- The Virgin Atlantic Jet Lag Fighter will help you make the most of your holiday by not wasting time adjusting to timezones. Virgin teamed up with a world-renowned jet lag and sleep expert to give you advice tailored to your trip, activities and personal profile.
- Talk to Me can help you get your message across no matter where you are, with the ability to translate English into 40 other languages. You can have the app playback your words in another language, or you can have it convert it into an SMS text. With the ability to communicate flawlessly you don’t have anything left to do but enjoy your holiday.
Don’t forgo your holiday this year to power through. Power up instead with the right business apps and tools to get the job done wherever you are.