"It might sound hard, but more accuracy means more fairness, for both staff and customers," says Mr Machin. "Thirty percent of our costs are labour. The more we pin costs down, the more choice we have about how to distribute rewards. And the better we get at pricing our produce, the more customers we bring in."This article shows how new technologies, including biometric identity management technologies, are helping small businesses generate the data that help them operate with the same type of information large companies have been using for ages.
These identity management technologies combined with Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) techniques are allowing small businesses to arrive at a precise calculation of costs, taking the guesswork out of pricing decisions. Moreover, the return on investment is significant.
"I would say our original investment in the time and management system has repaid already. The wages calculation, for example, used to take a couple of days. Now it is a matter of hours."