It is common knowledge that technology is a major driver of human progress. It's easy to notice this in fields like medicine and aerospace where technology takes center stage in the industry itself. In the business world, however, there's all too often a tendency to stick to the tried-and-true. The business world relies overwhelmingly on the human element; personal interaction and influence are usually key to success, and economics itself is a well-honed science. Because of this tendency to stick to old methodologies, there's a tendency in the business world to fall behind the cutting edge of technological advancement. Though as progress marches on, technology offers the business world tools and techniques that can improve efficiency and profitability. Here are three ways that a business owner can leverage technology to help their company thrive.
1. Improve Your Security Protocols
Security has always been a challenge in business. Bringing new people into the business whether as employees or customers carries the risk of someone taking advantage of the invitation for nefarious purposes. Enter the electronic security experts. New techniques have emerged over the last few decades that have revolutionized security and made organizations safer than ever from crime. Closed-circuit cameras and lighting systems can now be monitored directly from a smartphone. In addition, identity proofing systems are becoming an industry standard. These mobile device based systems can scan official IDs when new employees come on board as well as match selfies to official identification photos for an additional layer of security.
2. Enhance Team Building Through Computing
Getting people on the same page and working together for a collective goal is a necessary part of any organization. Formal meetings are good ways to facilitate this, but they are often difficult to organize, require people to physically travel and even prove to be time-wasters if participants feel like they're in a social pressure cooker. How many times have we all heard someone utter the phrase "This meeting should have been an email!"? The solution to this is to combine the two ideas. Programs like Zoom and Skype allow employees to connect to each other across the world from the comfort of their own home. A recent international study showed that about two-thirds of respondents connect with their favorite colleague online, suggesting that the Internet is a conduit for collaboration, not a barrier to it.
3. Become More Automated
The ability to automate repetitive tasks is one of the greatest benefits of computer technology. The amount of time that can be saved is staggering, especially when you count up all the hours spent on necessary-but-boring activities such as responding to emails or filing paperwork. Making these specific tasks digital even has the added benefit of helping the environment by creating a paperless office. Lead generation and data analysis are two more tasks which can be safely relegated to automated systems because these are math-heavy operations that a computer is arguably better at than a human.
A major concern among workers is that automating businesses will necessarily lead to job cuts. This doesn't have to be the case at all. In fact, automating the more tedious tasks of a company can open the door to more creative positions being discovered and filled. For instance, at a design startup operating within a limited budget, the money saved by investing in automated timesheet and accounting programs could allow for more varied artistic talents to be brought into the team, thus expanding the scope and reach of the company.
Whether a business is just getting in on the ground floor of a new industry or has been around for years, advances in technology are giving everyone a tool kit that previous generations couldn't even have imagined. We all know it's comforting to stick with the familiar in the business field. That being said, the new gadgets at our disposal are more than just passing fads. They're valuable instruments for helping businesses survive and make progress in an ever-changing world.