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How Technological Changes Are Affecting Businesses - Sophia Belnap - Blog

How Technological Changes Are Affecting Businesses

Changing technology affects every aspect of life. Inevitably, that includes business. The goal of any new technological advancement is to make everyday activities more efficient and convenient. While this is beneficial in all areas of life, it is particularly significant in business because greater efficiency means saving more money. Here are some specific ways that technology has changed, and continues to impact, business in general, especially small businesses.

Improved Communication 

Many people specifically think of communication when they think of technological advances. It makes sense because, in just the past 25 years or so, communication technology has been revolutionized in such a way that it is hardly even recognizable compared with the communication methods of the past. Having a smart phone with an LTE SIM card provides a lot of different platforms by which you can communicate with suppliers, distributors, and of course, customers. At the same time, centralized social intranet software helps to improve intra-office communications, e.g., relaying relevant data between departments and updating internal documents.

Broader Customer Bases

In the past, a small business was more or less limited to serving a local customer base. While this allows you to foster relationships with your customers, it can make it more difficult to turn a profit. However, if you have a website, you may be able to take and fulfill orders from as far away as you can manage to ship. Breaking into the regional market should be no problem, and even national and international markets may be available to you. It's not the technology that's limiting you; it's the costs involved with shipping your products.

Increased Productivity

Technology gives your employees more efficient tools with which to complete their tasks. You may see a major increase in performance as a result, even with the most fundamental business tech. Supervisors can set measurable goals for their team members, employees can process more information in less time, and the amount of human labor required can be reduced.

More Secure Data

You probably have some sensitive or proprietary information about your business. You may also have information about customers that has to remain secure. You may think that storing this information offline would be the most secure, and in some respects you are right. However, this is not very efficient. It is also unnecessary because there are plenty of user-friendly tools that allow you to secure your electronic data effectively, even with little background in information technology.

Reduced Operating Costs

Most of the impacts discussed here reduce costs in one way or another. Some additional cost reductions not already mentioned include giving representatives in the field smart phone apps with which to record their daily expenses. The apps can be synchronized with accounting software in the home office so that when the rep makes a change, the software automatically reflects it. There are other ways in which accounting, payroll, and record keeping can all be automated.

Collaborative Outsourcing

Ideally, you would perform all your business operations at your own facility. However, this may not always be possible due to limited manpower or lack of proper facilities. Technology allows you to outsource certain functions to other companies with the necessary resources to handle them, such as customer service and technical support.

Environmental Benefits

It is in everyone's interest, including your own business interests, to help protect the environment. Technology has made great strides toward the paperless office, i.e., one in which all records are kept online. While the paperless office is not yet a practical reality, technology moves businesses closer to that goal all the time. Going paperless, or at least as paperless as is feasible at the present time, helps to save environmental resources, such as trees and water, as well as in-office resources. For example, when you no longer have to keep physical records, you can clear up a lot of office space that you can repurpose for more pressing needs.

Some people think that small businesses do not need or have much use for technology, but in fact, the opposite is true. If you run a small business, technology can help level the playing field between you and larger competitors.

Publish Date: July 6, 2021 3:01 PM

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