I want you to think back… way back.
No email, internet or smartphones.
It feels like dinosaurs should be in this picture, right? How was it that businesses thrived and worked in a world without these things? How did we ever get anything done?
Fast forward into today’s world. Everyone has a cellphone in hand, we don’t even go into places without wifi and far more emails and texts are sent than phone calls are made. Social networking is how we catch up with friends, family and even the coworker that you may sit beside every day.
Here are a few ways that technology is revolutionizing business today by solving business problems, increasing productivity and ultimately helping your bottom line.
Bring on the gadgets
Drones – It may not be long before business deliveries are being completed by drones. As we speak Amazon is testing these delivery methods for packages under 5 lbs (check out https://www.amazon.com/primeair ). The hope according to techworld.com is to have the drones deliver amazon prime packages in 30 minutes to a customer’s door (see more ways drones are being used in business at http://www.techworld.com/picture-gallery/personal-tech/best-uses-of-drones-in-business-3605145-3605145/)
GPS – Up until now mostly used to track positioning and manage vehicle usage, GPS has become a relatively standard technology in the transportation industry. While GPS is not a new technology, business experts are finally able to weigh in on the ROI (return of investment) for businesses who have implemented it into their systems. According to a study by the Aberdeen Group, companies that implement GPS systems saw a 22 percent drop in fuel costs. In businesses who have travelling employees or equipment, that’s a hefty cost savings. More than that, according to David Ingram at smallbusiness.com, “web-based coupon-distribution companies can use GPS to provide customers with coupons for businesses in close proximity to their location at any time. The same principle can apply to identifying nearby events or specific product/service categories. Delivery companies can use GPS to quickly and accurately give estimated arrival times to customers.”
Wifi Security Systems – Many wifi security systems are not only available on all your smart devices, but also let you store video images via the cloud. Check out the review at http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/6897-video-surveillance-systems.html if you want to learn more about some of the many options out there. The site even has a link to a questionnaire you can do.
Noise cancelling headphones – Okay, I know what you are thinking… why has this made a list for technology in business? Well if your work environment is more open or noisy, how much is it affecting the productivity of you and your staff? Here are the best noise cancelling headphones of 2016: https://www.cnet.com/topics/headphones/best-headphones/noise-canceling/
Make the most of your people
Ultimately it’s about keeping your employees focused and using technology appropriately, so they can perform at their peak level. It may not be as sexy as the latest gadgets, but you start by providing employees with the right hardware and updated software to keep them working at their best.
But from there how do companies like Google or Hubspot keep their employees happy and engaged? How about a nap room? Putting sleep pods in your office might seem like something out of a sci-fi movie but it is becoming more and more popular. A NASA study showed a nap of just 26 minutes can boost productivity by as much as 34 percent and increase alertness by 54 percent.
We also have to look at ways to attract the top talent to our workforces, and meet them where they are. If your company accessible enough for an employee who’s looking for flexibility in their work style? That is where the anywhere workplace can come in. With the right cloud technology in place, you can connect to the best talent wherever they live.
And while you’re exploring new technology, just creating a culture of innovation is a great way to help with employee engagement. Self-stirring mugs anyone? Yes, these are real: http://www.thinkgeek.com/product/cf68/
No more expensive print ads. When it comes to marketing a business, one of the first questions asked is “what’s your web address?”
Digital marketing ranges from simple informational websites, to advertising on search engines, to online product sales. Email campaigning is an effective and low cost method to reach a large group of people with a newsletter, coupons or business updates. Mobile marketing through mobile application advertising and branded apps can further push your message to your ideal customers.
Video has also come a long way, not just YouTube videos and their advertisements, but also taking full on virtual reality tours of your office or branded video brochures. Some companies are even leveraging video games in their marketing by creating their own. If you can think it, it can pretty much happen in this new realm of digital marketing.
In Part 2 of this series, we will investigate further into how technology can help a business today, in ways you perhaps never really even thought were possible. Stay tuned.