Steps to Exporting Step 3: Has Your Company Got the Capability and Resources?
Capability and resources
For any company, expansion into overseas markets will have a direct impact on the organisational structure of the business. Weaknesses in business processes, structure, staffing issues, critical skills and the ability to deal with cultural issues may need to be addressed to deal with the increased demands associated with exporting. This can be achieved through training and development and Exploring Exporting programme will be able to help
If you are in the manufacturing business, you need to consider how much of your current capacity is available for export and how you will meet increased customer demand.. You also need to be sure your product is sufficiently proven in the marketplace. If you are outsourcing the manufacture of your product, have you considered the additional demands associated with management overheads, manufacturing schedules, quality control, finance, etc?
Software companies should consider the staff resources they’ll need to integrate, test and support sales in the field, plus any localisation required. Likewise, services companies should consider the demands replicating their service offering overseas will place on the company’s key staff resources.
Are you internationally competitive on the cost of making and delivering your product or service? It is essential for companies trading internationally to have a good understanding of their company’s competitive position compared to their international counterparts, and, if necessary, to take appropriate measures to maintain or improve their position in the market.
Technology and Intellectual Property
You’ve made a significant investment in developing your new product, service or technology, but how well is it protected legally? Legal protection for your technology and brands through use of patents, copyright, registered designs, design rights, trademarks and “know how” (confidential company information), can act as a barrier to entry for your competitors and will make your company more attractive to investors. Seek legal advice from a small business or intellectual property lawyer or solicitor on this.
How efficient are your processes? Are they sufficiently fine-tuned to support your export drive? Do you need to build capability in your people to better identify problems, improve operations and efficiencies and reduce costs?
Innovation is one of the key drivers of competitive advantage, growth and profitability. In the face of increased global competition, Irish companies must stay on top of innovation and manage it as a strategic business process, encompassing new product development, responses to potentially disruptive emerging technologies and a creative approach to problem-solving, ideas management and implementation.
Getting your Website Ready for Export Sales
The internet provides one of the most cost-effective ways to develop business overseas. How you choose to incorporate the internet into your business will depend on your resources, capability and the market you’re targeting. However, one thing is clear, no business can afford to ignore or take their web-presence lightly.