There are a lot of ways that modern business has changed over the last several years. From marketing to bookkeeping, there are areas of business that seem practically unrecognizable from how they were even ten years ago. Even the things that aren’t completely different have had to evolve and adapt to meet the needs of the modern business world. Of course, there is absolutely a central cause behind so much of this change: technology. Technology and business have always been closely linked, and that connection has only become stronger in recent years. As technology changed the lives of consumers, companies have had to adapt to meet their needs and expectations. Not only that but the way that businesses are run has become much more streamlined and intuitive thanks to the technology. In truth, businesses that don’t embrace technology are already setting themselves up to fail. Unfortunately, there are plenty of businesses that don’t seem to realize this. They assume that because their business has continued without using the most recent technology up until this point, it can continue without it indefinitely. The problem here is that it assumes that the world of business is the same as it was a decade ago. To help your business avoid this fate, here are some ways that you can incorporate technology into your business to stay on the cutting edge of the modern world.
High speed internet
It doesn’t matter what your business is, whether it’s a carpentry business or a retail store, you need to have high-speed internet access. Of course, it should really go without saying that you need internet for your business in general. People live more of their lives online than many of us could ever have imagined. With smartphones and tablets, people have access to the internet wherever they are. This means that without the internet, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to connect with and sell to your customers at any time of day. But you really do need to make sure that your internet connection is fast and reliable. With online working being such a priority, it’s crucial that your business is able to stay connected at all times. The last thing that you want is to be in the middle of an important task and your internet suddenly slows down or disconnects entirely. A lot of employees online at once can put a lot of strain on your internet connection, and losing that connection can put a huge amount of strain on your business’s productivity. It’s a good idea to shop around for the best possible internet service and make sure that your dedicating time and resources to regular maintenance.
When it comes to your business, every penny is crucial. The worst possible thing for your business is not to be able to keep an accurate record of your finances. The truth is, a lot of business owners don’t have a particular aptitude for bookkeeping. This is part of the reason that it’s one of those things that businesses often neglect. Of course, doing that can be extremely dangerous. Fortunately, there are plenty of different types of accounting software available. They allow you to be able to keep a close eye on all of your income and outgoings, as well as being sure that you’re fully aware of all of the expenses that are necessary to your business. Of course, you could always outsource your accounting to someone else, but that can be pretty costly, and the great thing about a lot of accounting software is that they’re available for free. Whether you’re after the most basic software possible or you need something with much more specific functionality, there’s something out there for every business.
One of the best things about modern technology is how much it’s improved people’s ability to stay connected to each other. Of course, smartphones have made it much easier to connect with your customers at all times, but you shouldn’t neglect how it can improve the productivity of your business. There are many ways in which the traditional model of an office is disappearing and being replaced by a much more open, flexible working environment. The trouble with this is that it’s difficult to know how to stay in contact with your employees if they, or you, are working remotely. By using smartphones, your employees can stay connected even if they are away from their desks or computers. Smartphones allow them to access emails and shared documents. If you have dedicated software that your business requires, consider having your IT department create an app that allows your employees to access that software on the go. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should use the smartphones to hassle your employees every hour of the day! But it does mean that the, sometimes restrictive, confines of the traditional office don’t have to get in the way of your business being as productive and successful as possible.
There are times when you won’t necessarily want to use the cloud for all of your storage needs. In fact, it’s a very good idea to have some form of backup storage in place. Cloud services are very reliable, but when it comes to your business, you can’t really afford to take any chances. Portable memory storage devices like USB thumb drives are a fantastic way to transfer and store data, even while on the go. It’s also important that you understand the capacity of any given storage disks. Because of that, things like a raid 10 calculator are invaluable. Once again this allows your business to break out of the idea that work can only ever occur on-site in the office itself. It’s also an extra security measure. If you have your data backed up, then it’s a good idea to have it off-site. If anyone intends of stealing any information from your business, then the very first place that they are going to look is in the office itself.
Perhaps this is slightly stretching the definition of technology, but social media is definitely part of the recent technological advancements that have been made over the last decade. It has revolutionized the way in which businesses are able to connect with their customers. Never before have companies had access to such a massive audience. New accounts are made every second and people can spread and share content that they like to everyone they know in just the click of a mouse. Social media has completely changed the concept of word of mouth marketing for the better. Your business simply cannot afford to ignore the benefits that social media pages can provide. Facebook and Twitter are still the big hitters but there are dozens of sites that you can use depending on your business. Not only does it allow you to market directly to customers but it helps you connect with them on a personal level as well as acting as another avenue for customer service, allowing you to address their problems directly. Not only that but in doing so, you get to show other prospective customers how well you are able to assist a customer with their problem. This turns customer service into yet another marketing opportunity.
The key thing to remember about technology is that it never stays still for more than a moment. Technology is always getting faster and more powerful, and it’s up to businesses to try and keep up. Of course, this isn’t always going to be possible, no one can stay on the cutting edge of technology all the time. But by keeping a close eye on innovations, you can find the best possible ways for your business to stay ahead of the competition.