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StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

3 Ways Your Company Is Using Technology Wrong

As a business owner, you’re probably fed up of hearing about how important technology is for your business. You know that by now and you’ve probably made some updates to the tech in your office and started to see some of the benefits. But a lot of business owners end up adopting technology because they’ve been told that they should, without really understanding how to use it properly. If you’re making mistakes when implementing and using new tech, you’re paying out loads of money for stuff you aren’t getting the full benefit of. These are the biggest tech mistakes that companies make and how to solve them.

Using The Cloud For File Transfer

I’m not suggesting that using the cloud for file transfer is a bad idea, it isn’t. One of the great things about the cloud is that you can use it to quickly access files from any computer, but so many companies think that this is the only thing the cloud can do and they’re paying for an expensive service and only using it for this one small thing. When you set up the cloud, spend a bit of money on cloud implementation services and get everything set up properly, then you’ll be able to get the full potential from it. You can use it to improve collaboration between employees by allowing them to work on documents together in real time. It’s also great for cutting costs and saving space in the office by reducing the number of physical servers you’re using. If you aren’t using all of the great features of cloud services, you’re wasting money.

Experimental Technologies

When a company comes to you and says they’ve just developed an innovative piece of software that is going to revolutionize your company, it’s tempting to bite their hand off and hand over your cash. But you don’t know where IT trends are going to go and a lot of tech in the early stages is going to be riddled with problems. You might get lucky and buy something that saves you money and improves productivity, but you’re just as likely to buy a buggy piece of software that never takes off. Don’t take risks on new technologies, it’s better to invest your technology fund in the tried and tested stuff.

Viewing IT As Separate From The Business

 

The IT department often gets shunted out of the way and forgotten about until they’re needed. They’re seen as separate from the rest of the business but that’s the wrong attitude to have. Now that technology is so tied up with every aspect of your company, the IT department has a central role to play in maintaining that technology and helping you to use it properly. If you’re not allowing the IT department to do what they do best, you’re just going to slow things down unnecessarily.

Spending money on technology is one thing but if you actually want it to have a meaningful impact on your business, you need to understand how to use it properly and avoid these mistakes.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

Why Technology Is So Important In Business Practice

The information age got itself into full swing about 100 years ago, and we’re still living in it these days because of the amount of new information that can spring up in any sector in any market anywhere on the globe. As a result, it’s such a powerful time to run a business. You can be reached from anywhere and find the market you need instantly with a few search engine terms, and then operate on a larger scale than you ever would have been able to in the past. So with that in mind, here’s some of the mostly wide renowned reasons as to why technology is so important in our business practices.

Our Communication is So Much Better

Let’s consider this for a minute. When you’re able to write things down to send off, instead of speaking it to a person, we can draft out what we’re going to say. That means we can perfect our communicative skills, and make it a lot easier to close a deal with a few emails. Of course there’s no beating the natural charisma of the speech, but if you’re the kind of person who is in a leadership position and struggles with this, no longer do you need to think yourself turfed out because of it!

Not only does this impress possible investors and business connections, but you can also better perform customer service with the written word. No issues with connectivity over the phone, everything about a complaint is set out in front of you to refer back to, and you can focus on more than one task at once seeing as you’re using a screen instead of your voice. You can practice with online programs and apps without ever needing to hire out a service. It’s often a lot cheaper to run business through technology!

It Affects Our Operating Size

So whilst we may be a far cry away from replacing human workers with robots, despite burgeoning AI on the frontier, we can expand our businesses via the use of software. This is because everything is instantly accessible as long as you have an internet connection, and there’s hardly any countries left in the world where this isn’t reliable. Connectivity on a global scale means we can do international trading, conference calls across oceans, and bring in more and more people from the other side of the world with a whole wealth of talent. It’s incredibly exciting when you think about it!

You can even cut out a few hours of work time, or even lower the cost of hiring an accountant when you can do financial modeling on smart spreadsheets. It may still be a good idea to bring on someone who knows the numbers inside and out, as nothing is smarter than the human brain, but programs like this give people with lower budgets a better chance from the get go.

It Often Keeps Details More Secure

Of course in such a digital age you’re going to experience software bugs, and of course sometimes there’s the odd hack or two. However, having firewalls and digital security systems in place make these details you store on a network a lot more secure, plus they’re easier to reach for everyone involved in a transaction process.

On a more local scale, business operations can be kept secure by software from outside intrusion by competitors, and if you’re running a business that has a secret recipe involved in the creation of your product, this is where it’ll be the most safe. Even passwords alone are a great deterrent!

So the general theme is that if you have software systems in place to encrypt the data of customers, you’re not going to lose it in the back of a filing cabinet or need to input the same information everytime it comes to it, plus you’re better protected against any malware willing to get into your data banks. Don’t underestimate the power of technology when it comes to this purpose, and remember that customers always have a choice to either have their details remembered or not; you’re simply providing a better alternative for them to avoid hassle!

Overall, technology makes business easier and safer to conduct, and there’s a whole world of it out there for you to explore as an entrepreneur. Startups have never had such a strong foundation age, and whenever a sustainable business crops up on the block, it means the information age has done its bit for the future.

Technology Investments That’ll Improve Your Business’s Organization

In today’s modern environment, a business needs to be making use of the full range of technology available to them in every aspect of their enterprise. Technology has made it easier than ever before to keep in contact with suppliers, listen to customers and what they have to say, and increase your presence through the internet. In short, through making effective use of technology, you will enable yourself to have a more effective business, and one that can be run much more tightly. Here, then, are just some of the ways in which technology can have a positive benefit to your business’ organization.

Communication and Interaction

There is such a wide range of ways to communicate with one another in today’s society that it is impossible to list them all. Studies have shown that the average digital consumer does in fact own 3.6 digital devices. But the sheer volume of ways that technology has afforded us should mean that you should always be able to get speaking to someone that you need to, employee or customer. Furthermore, with the extensive range of methods available to you, you should always be able to find a way that suits you, your business, and your methods, whether that be a phone call, a text message, or an e-mail. And with the internet, you can have a much greater freedom of access to information and contacts instantly, as well as quick access to all elements of your business with just the touch of a button or the swipe of a finger.

Apps and Software

There are a staggering number of tools, programs and software available to you in order to assist with all the elements of the organization of your business. Sites such as www.weaveability.com, for example, offer SAP tools that make all of the data about your business available in one place, with access to real-time updates from both your consumers and your suppliers. This makes it much easier to keep a watchful eye over what is going on within all areas of your business, as well as the fact that you can receive vital updates as soon as they occur and wherever you are, with data able to be synced across all your devices.

Document Management

There is also a wide range of document management software available for you to take advantage of. Such software will enable you to increase your business’s productivity and organization via a direct elimination of any need for entering data manually, routine maintenance or filing. Let technology do the brunt of this work for you-and, indeed, let it do it better and more efficiently than a living person ever could. The virtues of an automated system have long been documented and recorded, and while they are not faultless, in many respects they are clearly superior. With an automated system, the margin for error is much reduced, while you can spare valuable manpower for jobs that really require a human touch.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

Tech Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself! 3 Reasons To Upgrade Your Systems

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

Blink, and you’ll be due another tech upgrade! As time moves on we constantly need to get the latest tech and systems to ensure that our business moves with the times, but do we need to keep updating our machinery? In fact, do we even need to upgrade at all? Well, yes. And here are some reasons your tech is very likely due an upgrade.

Your Customers

If you think that you have a dedicated customer base that won’t waiver, then you have another thing coming! Your customers need to be at the forefront of your mind when you are communicating with them, and if they have moved onto more sophisticated methods of payment, from contactless to bitcoin, and if you haven’t changed with them they are going to leave you behind. Having a dedicated core of customers is what every business thinks it has, but if you can’t keep up with the times, it’s not going to help you retain them. Increase your methods of payment, and how you communicate with your customers, from follow-up emails to customer satisfaction surveys and even courtesy calls. It’s these little touches that will keep you in their mind when they are looking for somewhere to get their next product.

Your Platforms

Every online platform is developing at the speed of light, and if you aren’t covering your standard social media bases, then you have to make sure that your website is as good as it is going to be. The importance of the platforms you need to operate on will get you the most amount of coverage, and if you plan on pushing your company further when it comes to your target markets, you need to make sure your servers and equipment can cope with the strain. Using companies like ATB Technologies can help you to overcome teething issues if you are a small business with big ideas. As the scope of the company increases, the tech should grow to match it.

Your Carbon Footprint   

If you are using tech that has the power of an etch-a-sketch, then it may not be just draining your electric, but it may also be giving you a massive carbon footprint. Upgrading your tech to things like cloud-based operating systems and computers that automatically power down when they are not being used means a cheaper electric bill and a big reduction in the amount of waste your company is generating. If you still have to print out loads of paper, making the switch to tablet devices for every staff member means much less wastage. And connecting tablets to a cloud network means increased connectivity between the staff which will increase things like collaboration, but it can also help staff members to keep in the loop if they work from home.

Your tech impacts your business in so many ways, from the productivity to the marketing, so you owe it to your company to make sure it runs on the best tech you can afford; this especially applies if you are still using dial-up!

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article, Getting Your Team Ready For The Digital World

Getting Your Team Ready For The Digital World

Future-proofing your business is going to be a never-ending task. Technology is conquering the world, and the business landscape is included in that.

Do you still use a ledger for your expense sheets? Likely not. Do you still send written letters to clients? Possibly, but not as often as previously. Do you still hand out flyers to market your business? Probably not. There are many mistakes your company can make, and not acknowledging the digital world is one.

Computers dominate your workplace, not textbooks, right? Right. The internet and digital technology have changed the ways that people conduct business forever. And that’s for the best! There are more ways to complete work and communicate than ever before. Instead of waiting for mail to arrive, messages can be sent and received instantly. Instead of transporting a bag of files around, data can be stored to the cloud and accessed by you from anywhere in the world.

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article, Getting Your Team Ready For The Digital World

Photo courtesy of Frederico Cintra

The digital age brings a world of possibilities to you, your workplace and your team.

But where do you start?

It’s important to educate your team on the uses of the internet. Get together and brainstorm the possibilities. Work with your team to find solutions to issues and make sure that from the starting line, you’re all ready to work together.

So, getting your team ready? The first thing you need to identify as a leader is the weaknesses. Are members of your team uncomfortable with digital technology? If so, why? It’s imperative that you help your staff become more comfortable with the use of the internet. This will ensure that no-one is left behind as technology develops and your business relies on the increasing developments of the business world.

Training your staff is essential, even if they are fully knowledgeable about the use of technology in the workplace. Your team shouldn’t just be ready for the increasing use of digital tech, but should be ready for their own futures, and you should be the one to offer them guidance with this! Don’t be afraid of talking to your staff about their career development. This shouldn’t revolve around the future of your business, but should take their own aspirations into consideration. Now, this could involve losing them, but you’ll be doing the right thing for all parties involved and it’s a small risk that you should always be willing to take. Boost the skills of your staff with training courses from someone like Simplilearn and you’ll capture the benefits of the future, today. Get the best out of the digital skills of your staff and boost them when the opportunity arises. This means that you may be able to promote more often from within when vacancies arise, and that’s never not a good thing for your business and its future.

With technology and developments come risks. If your staff aren’t educated about the dangers of the internet, then a wayward download could cause disaster. Secure yourself with a good IT support team and regular system scans with decent anti-virus software and you’ll save yourself from catastrophe. Unleashing an uneducated team onto the internet could spell serious problems for your business.

What’s your workplace communication like right now? Do you all shout at each other from badly laid out desks? It’s time to change that and move away from messy, lengthy email chains that get your team nowhere. Start to utilize software like Slack and Basecamp to get the best out of your team. Both these applications offer a mobile solution to problems that workplace communication presents. You can attach files and minimize the amount of software that your workforce uses to avoid additional confusion.The advantages of this are usually overlooked and having one single platform for multiple, yet linked, subject matter is an an incredible method of increasing the productivity of your workforce. Regarding Basecamp alone, the campfire app within allows you to communicate instantly and in-real time and link to work. This cuts some steps out the process and allows your workflow to be centralized. No more messy communication methods, it’s time to clean up and get everyone moving in the same direction. Slack and Basecamp offer mobile apps, but there are multiple ways to connect when you’re not in the workplace. Whatsapp and Skype enable you to constantly be a presence, no matter where you are, and if your employees need you, they will be able to get hold of you.

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article, Getting Your Team Ready For The Digital World

Photo courtesy of miniyo73

The cloud is also something that can give your team a boost. Uploading your files to the remote storage solutions offered by Google and Dropbox can give your team so many options. Not only can your data be stored and accessed anywhere in the world that has an internet connection, you can collaborate on your documents with your staff simultaneously. There’s no need anymore for emails with amendments to be fired back and forth. Cloud storage is also a great option for backing up your valuable data.

The benefits of owning a business in the 21st century are fantastic. There are more ways to complete work than ever, there are more ways to collaborate and communicate than ever before. The digital age offers choice and freedom to your business and staff and the cloud allows you to run your business from anywhere in the entire world and even if you want to stay put, you can be totally flexible and mobile thanks to the options presented by the digital age. Answers exist all around for your problems, you only need to search for them.

Just make sure your team are ready for your leap into technology. It’s very easy to allow your staff to become left behind by your own rapid advances. Make sure you schedule time to speak to everyone on your time and take on their advice and concerns. Give them the chance to develop and encourage them to become the best employees they can be, but not just for the sake of your business. Allow them to educate themselves, but don’t be afraid to lead the way. Get your team ready for the digital practices of your business and you’ll have little to regret.