A recent study has found that 95% of entrepreneurs think software and technology is key to running a happy business, despite almost half (45%) admitting they don’t have the right tools or technologies to do so.
The research of more than 1,000 UK entrepreneurs, commissioned by online accounting software company Xero, also showed that 37% wish their IT systems were more efficient.
The research from Xero found financial inefficiencies, often due to a lack of technology in the workplace, cost the average UK business £35,000 in their first year, equating to a potential £175 billion loss in revenue with over five million SMEs in the UK.
James Caan CBE, serial entrepreneur who started 28,000 new businesses in his role as Chairman of Start-up Loans, believes having the right technology to run your business is imperative for success, “Every entrepreneur should be equipped with the right tools to run their business efficiently. Business apps like Xero provide technology solutions that simplify the way business owners manage their finances, giving them the freedom and flexibility to focus on what they’re passionate about.”
Caan believes the increasing availability of software like Xero goes some way to explaining the rising number of people starting their own business, adding: “It’s fantastic that more and more people are setting up their own businesses and a key factor in this is the increasing number of tools on hand to help.”
“Technology is such an important factor in the success of a business and its influence cannot be underestimated. Using the right technology to stay on top of your accounts is so fundamental to keeping a successful business and also a happy one. In Dragons’ Den so many people tripped up on this point, demonstrating how important it is to stay on top of your numbers for the growth of your business.”
With technology on hand to take the headache out of running a business, entrepreneurs can focus on the culture of their company; something that 3 in 5 (58%) of respondents surveyed believed was an underpinning factor for a happy business.
Launching its Business of Happiness initiative, Xero worked with leading happiness expert and best selling author Dr Robert Holden to identify the key to building a happy and successful business.
Commenting on the findings of the study, Dr Holden said, “It’s unsurprising that over half of respondents rate culture and fun in the workplace as an important factor in creating a happy business. The cost of no joy at work is too high for any enterprise to be truly profitable.”
Five Requirements for a Happy Business
Because a happy business is a beautiful thing, Xero has worked with Dr Robert Holden to find five requirements for making your business a happy one.
- Have a vision: Knowing what you’re working for helps you take pride in your work and focus on your goals.
- Good relationships: Make sure you have honest and clear communications with your employees, clients and customers to help keep them happy too.
- Freedom and flexibility: Having a good work life balance and being able to enjoy your free time or family occasions with flexible hours helps you to manage your workload and do your best job.
- Growth and investment: Learning new skills and helping others to do the same encourages engagement and excitement.
- Creativity: It’s not just about coming up with new ideas, but also allowing yourself and your team to be creative and using the right tools to do this.
- 61% of entrepreneurs in London believed that having the correct technology was very important, the highest in the UK
- 75% of entrepreneurs in the South West said they were now happier running their own business, the highest in the UK
- Entrepreneurs in the South West (68%), Yorkshire and Humber (67%) and Scotland (62%) are the most fulfilled in the UK
- 90% of entrepreneurs say they enjoy a better quality life than they did before
- 58% of entrepreneurs believe that one of the underpinning factors in their happiness is that their work is enjoyable and fun
- More than two-thirds of respondents (67%) believe the fact that the work they do is challenging contributes strongly to being happy at work
- 57% of respondents agreed that they viewed the people they worked with as friends
- 57% of entrepreneurs responded that they have increased flexibility around their family life and commitments.