New technologies have made it far easier for businesses to expand on a global scale. Indeed, according to findings from software provider SAP AG and Oxford University’s Oxford Economics, around 60% of small and medium sized businesses in North America have set their sights on new geographic markets.
As time goes on, it will become even easier for companies of varying sizes to enter new markets and forge international partnerships. But while accelerating growth with the objective of international expansion is associated with success, unprepared businesses could end up losing money without even knowing it.
Make sure your business isn’t falling into one of these very common pitfalls.
You’re spending too much money on currency conversion
If you’re working in an international market, it is likely that you will have to convert your money into a variety of different currencies. Many banks provide business accounts that allow for this – however they come at a cost.
Finding a smaller account provider that specializes in multi-currency accounts can save your business a great deal of money.
Several businesses have set such accounts up due to frustration at the bank’s expensive overheads. Saxo Payments have joined forces with Regent FE to create an online multi-currency account that states it can save businesses up to 80% on currency conversions.
You’re not taking advantage of cloud technology
Most businesses are probably using cloud technology to some extent, but despite the cloud’s ubiquity, its usefulness is not always fully realized. After all, cloud technology refers to far more than Google Drive and productivity tools.
Contractor Accountants 3 Wise Bears recommend the use of cloud accounting technology such as Xero and FreeAgent so that businesses can keep track of their accounts at any time, anywhere.
Looking at cloud solutions can help businesses know exactly what is going on in various departments even if they are across the globe. However, businesses that embrace the cloud must be mindful of their digital security: as Clearance Solutions have discussed, without professional data destruction services, confidential information can be easily extracted and threaten your reputation.
You’re losing custom to bad localization
Doing business abroad isn’t just about speaking a language fluently, it is about speaking your demographics’ languages fluently. It is imperative to make sure any translation work you do is correctly localized.
Spanish is one of the world’s most spoken languages; however, there is a huge difference between a European Spanish translation and a Latin American Spanish translation – and that’s before you’ve even thought about your niche audience.
If you’re working online, you need to fine-tune your message as much as possible. When using social media for example, you have to think not just about relevant use of language, but also whether your demographic use emoji or hashtags and how they respond to them.
Your employees are lacking the relevant International Business skills
There are two ways in which you could be losing out on skilled employees. The first and most obvious is by not giving them the relevant training. The second is through neglecting the possibility of recruiting from the global talent pool.
You can have employees join e-learning courses from anywhere in the world for efficient learning. However if you want them to have a more all-encompassing experience it has been argued that classroom learning is much more effective. Looking for training courses within each of your business locales may be time consuming, but it is likely that you will have a far more skilled task force.
Another benefit to operating a business globally is that you have access to a larger talent pool for any digital skill you require. This can be financially crucial at a time when SAP delivery directors like Daniel Patel at Eursap are saying that the SAP market is becoming saturated and competition increasing.
Rather than competing with rival companies for the best candidates in the usual city-wide radius, you can keep costs down and source new employees from anywhere with an internet connection. If one keeps to the best practices in remote working and communication, companies can employ the perfect candidates for the right price across the world.
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