While there are many advantages to running your own service business, being a one-person company can sometimes be challenging. One of the toughest things about it is that you have to do it yourself: from managing accounts to maintaining an online reputation, managing appointments, sorting out taxes, following leads, and managing social media - the list goes on. Wearing many hats can become nearly impossible very quickly as your business grows.
Fortunately, no matter where you are in your business - from complete CRM to solutions that help with specific parts of the sales cycle, Odoo has a broad spectrum of business tools that can help you in staying on top of your activities. Every solopreneur has a slightly different take on their workflow, based on the services they offer. The general process is roughly the same for all: prospecting, initial contact, sales call, the offer, working on the project, and following up. Thus, when Odoo is implemented correctly, it can free up a significant portion of time and effort on the way.
The importance of streamlining your business?
As an entrepreneur, the key to success is to create and maintain an intimate connection with your business. While you can still outsource and get help, you still need a solid understanding of it all. You are the boss, after all. So, the easiest way to survive is to create a reliable system for yourself that ensures high-quality work that is continuously pushed out the door promptly; efficiency and effectiveness are critical.
There are many reasons why one should streamline their business; however, here are few to consider:
It helps reduce paper usage - While you may think that the information you usually put on paper is necessary, you don't need to have it all on paper - you can go digital instead.
It is the first step to the automation of all your repetitive tasks
Using a centralized management system keeps all your data in one place - From in-house communication and accounting to e-mail marketing and scheduling; there is an app for everything
How Can Odoo Help?
Communication is the foundation of a business. Effective communication is the most crucial success factor in project management life cycle. On average, one out of five projects fail due to lack of communication between the project manager, team members, and clients.
From one-on-one and group messaging, live chat, individual and team audio calls, discussions, and file sharing, Odoo Inbox has you covered with transparent and efficient communication within your organization. It allows seamless communication between individual team members, departments, and the entire company. There is also the ability to organize and filter conversations into different channels (perhaps for specific projects, for technical support, general chat, and so forth). Users can organize multiple projects, teams, and other items using hashtags, as well as share files by dragging and dropping them into the platform.
Live chat integrates with your Odoo Website allowing your team to answer questions, schedule appointments, and sell your product or service in 1:1 conversations with customers.
If you have your customer's phone numbers on record, you can reach out to them with urgent updates through text message using Odoo SMS. Odoo VOIP provides two-way communication, meaning your customers can write back to any message you send, and you'd be able to reply directly.
Spend Less Time On E-mails
E-mail is one of the most necessary and time-consuming evils for any professional. There is no way you can avoid talking to clients, and you shouldn't. What you can do instead is find ways to use less e-mail and get through your inbox faster. Eliminating unnecessary back and forth via e-mail and efficiently managing your inbox can help you focus on more significant projects on your to-do list. Here are a few ways you can do just that:
First off, try to set up auto-responses for common types of e-mails you regularly receive,such as:
Inquiries from new clients,
Contact Form submissions
If you find yourself telling different people the same thing repeatedly, you should use an auto-response for it. Even if you need to pick up the phone or provide more information directly after that, this automatic e-mail will give people more information and allows you time to respond!
For example, you could create an auto-response to your client inquiry form that includes information and links about you and about what should happen next. By using the Marketing Automation app, you can create a new marketing campaign. Then, create an e-mail template with an introduction and link it to that campaign. At the end of the e-mail, use the Appointments app and add a link to direct the prospects to your Online Calls/Meetings/Appointments Booking. What this would do is every time a new prospect fills out and sends the form, an e-mail with your introduction will get sent automatically. You would still need to go and look at their request, but you wouldn't need to rush to reply to them immediately since the e-mail sends automatically.
Send Automatic Updates
Communicating project updates to clients is essential, but it can also feel tedious, especially with clients that request them all the time. An excellent way to start is by using Project Management and all the collaboration tools that come with it. Then, create and give client portal access to your clients to it. When you do this, not only will they have an up-to-date, real-time picture of their project. But they will also have features like e-mail notifications and digests that will automatically let them know when you're checking off items, moving tasks along your pipeline, and other "getting work done" things. This way, you won't have to send an e-mail after every task crossed off your to-do list.
Auto-Filter Your Inbox
In your Odoo Inbox, create and use different channels as well as the existing filters, or create custom ones to add additional rules into your e-mails. By doing this, your inbox will only show the essential e-mails you have to see, so that when you need to step away from client work to check an e-mail, you will solely focus on the most important ones.