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What makes a Sunday Times Tech Track 100 tick?

September 17 2020 by Paul Bulpitt

We love seeing our clients being recognised for their amazing work. Such as Monterosa who are featured in this year’s Sunday Times Tech Track 100 for being one of the fastest-growing privately-owned tech companies in the UK. To qualify for this year’s Top 100, they needed to have grown by around 50% year on year for the past three years. In order to achieve this growth, a business must be sustainably-run. It builds solid foundations and grows in a sustainable way. 

At Wow, we are extremely proud to go on this journey with some of the UK’s most exciting businesses. Supporting and advising fast-growing businesses requires specialist capabilities and services.

Traits of the fastest-growing companies

Having worked with many fast-growing tech companies and their founders along their journey, we’ve noticed some common traits. These traits any business of any size can learn from: 

 

Make decisions based on data insights

Growing a business at pace is not as reliant on having a hero as the “10 things Steve Jobs ate for his breakfast” articles would have you believe. The fastest-growing businesses we work with have invested in their data capabilities early. In one case, this was installing Salesforce CRM when the business had just six people in their team. In most businesses, we use Xero to gain financial insight. It doesn’t have to be complicated – it just has to provide the key insights when needed.

 

Use R&D tax credits to fund growth

The R&D tax credit scheme is invaluable to many businesses in supplementing external investment and providing cash for growth from an early stage.

Focus on what you’re best at and outsource the rest

Focus as a success trait is pretty obvious, but following through with the discipline to focus on your core strengths isn’t. The fast-growing tech businesses we work with focus on what they do best and outsource the rest, whether that’s legal, HR, or finance. We know from first-hand experience how hard it is to scale a finance team, but that’s our job! If you’re running as fast as you can to build a product, attract customers, onboard customers, and retain them – don’t take on the hassle of trying to scale a finance team too.

Spend significantly more time planning

Our research shows that the average business owner spends five hours a week on strategy. Fast-growing businesses spend 15 hours a week doing some form of planning or future-focussed activities.

Have a niche focus

We know that those businesses that focus on a technical specialism or an industry (or both) grow quicker than generalists. Monterosa is a case in point, as are many others in this year’s Sunday Times Tech Track 100. As this article points out, finding a customer segment underserved by a tech giant can be extremely effective.

Think big

Probably the most distinguishing trait is the removal of the constraints many people put on their imagination. Many of the most successful tech businesses now seemed just a ludicrous dream to someone at some point. However, without this ambition and sense of challenge, your business won’t gain the momentum needed to scale at the rate needed.

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