The solutions you use are an extension of your firm. While you can always focus on improving a single area of your business, taking a balanced approach and spreading your efforts across multiple areas of the firm is more impactful.
This approach is referred to as systems thinking. TechTarget defines systems thinking as “a holistic approach to analysis that focuses on the way that a system’s constituent parts interrelate and how systems work over time and within the context of larger systems.”
Within your firm, this involves asking what kind of future you want to create. Too often, firms view technology in an isolated bubble and consider how a particular tool or application will benefit one department or solve one problem. But when you take a systems‑thinking approach, you can pre‑solve problems rather than reacting to them.
Taking a systems thinking approach means choosing applications that benefit more than one area of your firm and tools that connect to each other. To turn data into usable information, it can’t be sitting in a siloed environment. Your solutions must be able to “talk” to other systems through integrations or an automated API (Application Programming Interface).
Investing in the integration of financial, talent, and client data allows you to see the big picture and zoom in on specific areas when needed. On the other hand, disparate systems limit the type of data your firm can analyze to increase efficiency and improve performance — both of which are crucial for scaling and growth.