“What can technology do for me?”
Every business, from mom-and-pop stores to publicly traded companies, need to ask this question. Trying to come up with an answer can be difficult; there’s a surplus of solutions out there, many attacking problems that don’t affect you. One of the best ways to help bring clarity to the search is to start assessing your business model.
Try to think of a business field that honestly doesn’t benefit from technology. A list of blue-collar businesses might be forming in your mind already. Mechanics use computers to help them diagnose car troubles – they could look up every engine error code in a book, but that would slow down their work and allows for human error. Farmers use computers to control the water pumps that irrigate their crops, and computers allow them to analyze soil samples to maximize output. No matter what the line of work, the right technology is the key to maintaining a competitive edge.
In large-scale companies, computers are imperative to keeping operations in sync and flowing smoothly. Stockbrokers use computers to receive a constant feed of information. The best brokers distinguish themselves by having the best analysis software. The smarter their programs, the better their predictions. Emotions and guesswork play a part, good technology separates first place from the runner-up. Broadcast companies ride on the back of technology, using computers to manage schedules, store advertisements, serve media and measure traffic.
Your business might not be a mechanic shop, or a farm, or a stock trading firm, or a broadcast service, but the right technology can help ensure your success in the same way. Let’s look at some more real-world examples that may hit close to home:
- CRM – CRM, or customer relationship management software, is the lifeblood of any business that needs to maintain a customer base to operate. CRM can help you generate and track leads, store client data, manage marketing operations, measure resources, and more. If you are in a client-facing field and you aren’t using CRM, you’re handicapping yourself. True you could keep client names and information in a Rolodex, keep appointments on a calendar on your desk, and write out marketing strategies on a piece of paper. What happens when you’re out of the office and need important information about a customer? How are you going to turn that marketing strategy you wrote out into an actionable plan? We could keep asking questions, but you know the answer: CRM.
- VoIP – This one might seem less important if you’re of the “if it ain’t broken, don’t fix it” mentality. For the sake of your business, step outside that mentality and hear how VoIP can increase your productivity and profitability. Voice over IP (VoIP) is a system that uses internet service to serve phone calls. The list of benefits is an article of its own, but the key points are lower cost, number portability, application integration, and features beyond traditional landline capabilities.
- Secure Firewalls – Welcome to the information age, where data is stored on computers, and white collar crime includes breaking into your computers. That doesn’t mean your information is always at risk, but there’s no reason to take a chance when protection is inexpensive.
- Remote Access / VPN – Sometimes you travel, or an employee needs to go on medical leave, or some other unforeseen circumstance arises. Maybe you just want to work from home, or let your employees work from home sometimes? Whatever the scenario, VPNs are the answer and getting remote access set up right can help save money and increase productivity.
- POS – A point of sale system will speed up your sales and checkout process incredibly. On top of making your customers happier and increasing output, a good POS system will usually integrate with the next item on our list, financial software.
- Financial Software – Businesses exist for one reason, and that’s to generate income. Everything from tracking sales, generating quarterly reports, and managing taxes, can be a nightmare to do with pen and paper. Financial software is the ONLY logical way to handle a business’ finances, and we can offer the right software set up the right way for your business.
This list doesn’t cover all the solutions we offer, but hopefully, you can see some of the ways in which technology can benefit you. To find out what specific steps your company can take to get the RIGHT technology to suit your business’ needs, contact us. We’ll set up an appointment, talk to you about how your business operates, and find out what solutions are right for you.