Businesses may be well aware of the technology available to them to help run their business effectively. However, the question remains as to whether your business is using such technology to its full potential, and to the advantage of your business. As well as offering simple solutions for complicated business processes, IT can also impact the communication, marketing and promotional aspects of your business.
Software to Improve Business Processes
The growth and capability of Information Technology, in particular, have seen vast improvements in business management software. Primarily, this type of software is designed to improve the day to day running of your enterprise. By improving the efficiency of your business, you can create a better working business model that saves your company time and resources, which you can then focus on other areas of business improvement. Process mapping finds the wasteful processes that aren’t effective and can show you the processes that are benefiting your business, too. A good BPM system can also identify the core tasks that are essential for the daily running of your business. It will also highlight the core tasks that are failing, giving an organisation-wide oversight and therefore clarity to the job role of yourself and your employees. By monitoring delays and reallocating responsibilities, proficient monitoring can eliminate bottlenecks and reduce lead times, while also removing redundant tasks. It is all done automatically, which can both maximise returns and also align your key organisation objectives with its processes.
The cloud has been actively around for years now; however, many businesses still fail to use the cloud to its full potential. The ability to share, upload, and edit files remotely with others at speed has revolutionised the way businesses can not only run their day-to-day business, but has allowed for a general improvement in productivity, which, in turn, can make room for funds and resources to be spent elsewhere within the business model. With 69% of businesses using cloud technology to some extent, it isn’t novel. However, a reminder of the benefits can reassure business owners who are not fully integrated into the cloud that they are making a sensible decision:
- Cost savings: For those still weighing up the pros and cons of the cloud, it is worth remembering that, once on the cloud, you will have easy access to your company’s data, and will save both money and time when it comes to projects due to the easy accessibility of your company’s data. Many cloud systems are pay as you go, meaning you will get the amount of space you pay for, and the bills will reflect that.
- Security concerns: Any sensible business owner will understandably have concerns when it comes to how their sensitive data is managed on the cloud. After all, if files are not completely secure on your site, how can you be assured they are protected? However, your web hosting provider can carefully monitor security, which is arguably more effective than an in-house system that you manage yourself. 94% of businesses say they saw an improvement in security after implementing cloud solutions; this is worth bearing in mind if you are unsure of whether to commit.
Mobile applications are becoming more and more integral to businesses and companies, as they offer a simpler, faster way to connect to and reach out to customers. 60% of users prefer mobile apps over purchasing online, so not only can investing in a mobile app show you are a forward-thinking business, but you will also be tapping into the m-commerce market, becoming instantly more accessible.
For those still unsure about whether investing in mobile applications are the way forward, consider that:
- Mobile apps are faster: Mobile apps can offer your customers instant access with a simple tap. It allows users to consume content quickly, and, depending on your sector, some apps can allow access offline. Whether your sector is banking, retail, finance, news or games, an app is a quicker way for customers to reach your vital information.
- You can create personalised content: You can easily personalise your content via your app according to the individual preferences of the user with a mobile app. It instantly makes your company seem more accessible and personable. User-centric personalisation makes UX more engaging and can increase customer retention, too. Personalisation can be achieved based on users shopping behaviour, culture, location and personal interests. This makes an app the perfect playground for a company to reach out to their customers and keep them coming back.
- There is instant online and offline access with mobile apps. Lifestyles are becoming more and more flexible, so 24/7 access to your company, and offline access will keep users engaged no matter when and where. By making data accessible offline, a seamless experience can be offered to users, increasing retention and offering content regardless of where the user is.
Promote Your Business Effectively
Information technology is your best friend when it comes to promoting your business, too. Software can now be utilised to develop an effective digital marketing strategy, improving your web presence through implementing SEO practices. Similarly, your mobile app can be used to promote your business, and programs such as Google Ads are worth investing in to manage your digital footprint across the web. Whether you are an e-commerce business, work within the finance sector, or are looking to sell your services to other companies; software can now oversee, manage, and tailor your campaigns, so they reach the right people, in the right way.
The capabilities of information technology will continuously improve and change as advancements do. Keeping on top of your businesses processes, so you are utilising IT to its full potential, can seem a daunting prospect for any business, whether you are an SME, a start-up or are a long-established company. However, by being familiar with some of the notable benefits that the latest IT can offer, such as 24/7 access to customers, improved business processes and efficiency, and remote access to your company’s data, you can ensure you are using IT to its full potential.