Almost half (42 percent) of small business owners say they don’t use technology to its full capacity, and 13 percent say they don’t use any technology at all, according to a recent Oasis survey of 289 owners of U.S. businesses with 10 to 99 employees.
Ten percent say they limit the use of technology because they’re busy just “getting the job done every day,” and 31 percent say they try to use it but aren’t sure how it can be used most effectively.
When small business owners do leverage technology, it’s largely used for websites (59 percent), cloud-based solutions (40 percent), mobile apps and interconnected devices (28 percent), and insights and analytics, tools and reporting (20 percent).
“There seems to be a missed opportunity for small business owners and managers to utilize technology better,” Oasis executive vice president and CIO Joel Steigelfest said in a statement.
“Savvy small business owners would be wise to consider whether routine HR tasks such as payroll, benefits processing and applicant tracking could be more efficient when automated through third-party tools and processes,” Steigelfest added. “This allows them to remove the burden on non revenue producing tasks so they can better focus on their core business and grow.”
A separate M-Files survey of 1,500 office workers worldwide found that poor information management is hurting their productivity, with data often stored manually in outdated folder structures across a variety of different systems.
Eight-two percent said they have to navigate different systems to find the correct version of a file they’re looking for, 42 percent said documents are frequently labeled incorrectly, and 41 percent said information is often stored in the wrong folder or system.
Once they find a document they’re looking for, 26 percent say they’re often unsure whether they’ve found the correct version.
“These findings clearly show the need for change in information management practices across all organizations – both large and small – wherever they are in their transition to a digital workplace,” M-Files senior vice president of marketing Greg Milliken said in a statement.
Still, some owners may be limiting technology investment due to financial concerns. A separate survey of 120 U.S. small business owners by Nav found that the majority believe the U.S. economy is heading towards a recession.
Forty-eight percent expect a recession to happen between six months and a year from now, 19 percent expect a recession to happen in 2020, and 17 percent say they’re sure when it will happen, but they believe a recession is coming.
In response, 38 percent of respondents said they’re cutting costs, and 22 percent are pursuing financing options.
“Small business owns often feel the pain of a recession before larger companies or the economy as a whole,” Nav CEO and co-founder Levi King said in a statement. “Even in good times, business owners struggle to access affordable capital and this pain point is exacerbated during difficult economic periods.”
“It is vital that business owners understand their business’ financial health and take proactive measures to weather the storm,” King added.