November 13, 2017

5 Ways in which Technology has Revolutionized Business

Over the last 10 to 15 years, the continuous evolution of technology has changed the way we do business, the dynamics of the workplace, and what we perceive as possible. And here, we’ll shed light on 5 different aspects that display the effect technology had on business.

 

1. Changing Workplace Rules

Technology makes it possible to telecommute, work from virtual offices and communicate with businesses and individuals across the globe. Flexible work schedules are popular because so many duties and responsibilities can be accomplished from an employee’s home or while the employee is traveling, utilizing communications platforms  from the social arena, such as Facebook Chat, Skype, and FaceTime, down to the more work-oriented channels, including Google Hangouts and Blue Jeans. It’s becoming more and more common for managers and team members to live and work effectively from different cities.

 

2. Cloud Computing

Cloud computing allows businesses, large and small, to move some of their operations to third-party servers accessible via Internet connectivity.  Not only does this allow for variable data packages, but also for rapid (on-demand) expansion and mobility without the fear of downtime, crashes, or permanently lost data. A good example of a Cloud Computing provider is Google’s Gmail; Gmail users can access files and applications hosted by Google via the internet from any device. Another is Microsoft Exchange for more private cloud computing, where files can only be accessed by authorized users through a secure VPN connection. This has allowed small business access to resources that would have been cost prohibitive for them in the past and evened the playing field when it comes to competing against corporations with far more funding.

 

3.  Decreasing Cost & Increasing Functionality

Two things come together to create a “buyer’s market” when it comes to software solutions for your business — first, the hardware and software necessary to create these software solutions has become increasingly easy to use and afford.  Secondly, the number of tech-savvy and entrepreneurial minds who can exploit such crumbling barriers has multiplied exponentially. These solutions are offered at affordable rates and are often simple enough to use that businesses don’t need to hire dedicated employees or sign long-term service contracts in order to make use of them. For example, instead of hiring a dedicated office manager/assistant to regulate the team’s schedule and meetings, you can instead use online applications like Google Calendar and Basecamp or Wunderlist to arrange meetings, brainstorming sessions, and project timelines for your team.

 

4. Detailed Customer Segmentation

With the flow of more and more data, it’s easier now than ever before to understand the customers you’re looking for.  With the availability of analytics tools expanding, you can segment your prospects into ever more minute groups in order to target them specifically and, in effect, get more bang for your marketing buck.  Analytics tools such as Google Analytics, Bitly, or Clickly allow you to narrow down your audiences, observe traffic and trends, and tap into digital conversations that allow you to understand your customers further.  Even a simple Facebook page will let you know where your visitors are from, what type of browser they’re using, how they found your page, what they do while on it, how long they stay, and at which point they decided to leave.  More in-depth services will allow you to refine your processes, offerings, and approach to dramatically increase conversions.

 

5. Social Impact

The rise of social networking has figuratively shrunken the world. Years ago you may have gotten away with average customer service and product offerings, but now you’ll likely evoke a hateful rant on Facebook. If you earn a bad reputation, it’s going to stick with you.  That’s why you see businesses large and small worried about their digital footprint, their social identity.  While they have community managers and such on the lookout for potential “bad press”, making the rounds trying to be proactive, it helps a great deal to have a crisis management plan in your pocket — this entails developing the right statements to deploy and defend yourself online in times of crisis, and curating the right recovery campaigns that deliver your key messages and divert attention from any bad press that might arise.

 

The rapid advance of technology isn’t going to slow any time soon.  However, the good news is: you don’t have to rebuild your business from the ground up. You just have to understand how technology affects your business (for better or worse) and how to play it to your advantage.

 

Now that you’ve understood the importance of technology for running your business, read more about The 5 Systems you need to efficiently run your Business

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