Seven tips for choosing the right technology for your business
Using the right technology for your business allows you to address all your needs and solve your problems. But how do you know what the ‘right’ technology is?
It would be ideal if you only had to invest in the right technology once, but the tech world is ever-evolving. What worked two years ago may be deemed obsolete today. Just look at what’s happening in artificial intelligence, IT services, telecommunications, and data management, among other fields. All these technological components have undergone rapid advancements in less than a decade.
Whether you’re a sole proprietor or a small-to-medium-sized enterprise, you need to make sure that the technologies you use in your business are up to date. It doesn’t mean you always have to buy the latest software and devices.
You just must have the technology that works now to help you run your operations as seamlessly as possible. Investing in the right technology will help ensure that your business stays open and relevant now and in the future, even in times of economic uncertainties.
For instance, a typewriter may have been essential two or three decades ago. But buying one today would prove impractical, if not a total waste of your resources – unless, of course, you’re the sentimental type. The same story goes for fax machines.
How to choose the proper technology for your company
When deciding which business tools to invest in, you need to segregate which ones can truly help your business operations from those techs that may only serve to give your organization some bragging rights. Remember, not all shiny new things are gold.
Such is the case for business intelligence. It’s one of the new favorite phrases used in business today. As data gathering became more efficient, companies find themselves drowning in information and unable to make strategic decisions.
So, if you don’t invest in new streamlined business intelligence tools, you may be relying on outdated or irrelevant data. For your enterprise to thrive, you need to transform data into strategy effectively. It can only happen if you invest in the right tools, like machine learning, for the different aspects of your business.
Seven tips for choosing the right technology for your business
New tech will help leverage your business and boost ROI. Here are seven tips to keep in mind when picking the right technology.
1) Choose technology that improves existing business processes
Adopting new technologies can be costly. It’s the reason why you need to choose which ones to invest in. To determine if you are looking at the right technology, you need to ask yourself if it will improve the way you do business today.
One clear example would be the communication tools you use. As more businesses adapt to remote setups and e-commerce, a modern business phone system like the one described at openphone.co should provide essential features and functionalities to meet business needs, particularly among small and medium enterprises. Investing in new communication or phone system will allow you to run your business, serve your customers, and work with your team anywhere.
2) It needs to fulfill your company’s needs
When purchasing technology for your business, your organization’s needs should always serve as your compass. Many companies tend to overlook their needs when implementing new technology in the workplace. Fulfilling your needs is not just about improving your business processes. The goal is to provide your team and yourself the tools to perform your jobs.
For instance, if you’re in the wine selling business, providing your sales representatives with tablets is more practical. These are lightweight and more suitable when booking and tracking sales or making presentations. In contrast, providing your team with clunky but superfast mid-gaming laptops will be expensive and ill-conceived because your salespeople will not create software programs in the field or play online games. Your employees should make use of the tech you invest in.
3) Look for tech that is used by other industry players
Shifting to new technology is never easy. But it doesn’t mean there are no shortcuts. When shopping around for new tech, make it a point to ask around in your industry. Visit forums or join expos.
Sure enough, the tech that your competitors and other players in your industry are using will also benefit your organization. For example, if most enterprises in your sector embrace cloud computing technology, then adapting it to your business would be a smart decision.
4) It has to pass your cost-benefit analysis
You can shop for the perfect business solutions all you want. But if your budget is not enough or, worse, the tech’s intended benefits do not correspond to its costs, then there’s no point in buying such technology.
Always make sure that the innovations you invest in will fit your business and not the other way around. The best and the most expensive techs may not always be what your business needs. Do a cost-benefit analysis so you don’t spend your money blindly.
5) You need tech that is easy to use and integrate
Ultimately, you and your employees will be the ones who will use any new technology you buy. You should choose one that offers a smooth user experience. You don’t want to have new software or device with all the bells and whistles only for you and your people to have usability issues. Always keep in mind, the right technology is the one that works for you.
6) It must work now and in the foreseeable future
The time when future-proof technology becomes a reality will be the time when pigs will fly. It just won’t happen. Business tech is advancing rapidly. One or two years seem like ages when it comes to innovations in business software and devices. Obsolescence is part of all technologies.
That said, the best you can hope for is to have a tech that works now and in the foreseeable future, not forever. You want a business solution that will enhance your operations in the next three to five years. Adapting to new technology entails not only costs but also interruptions in your productivity. So, you don’t want to do it every year.
7) Make sure it is backed by reliable security
Besides improving your business processes and meeting your organization’s needs, your new tech should also have tough system security. As wireless connections have become the norm among businesses today, the right technology should not be your weakest link when it comes to attacks from hackers and other entities who may want to steal your data. Always go for technologies that have been certified and vetted.
Ready to find the right tech for your business?
Choosing the right technology for your business is crucial for your productivity and bottom line. But in a time when software and devices become outdated faster than companies can adapt, implementing new technology is easier said than done – even if you have the means to buy.
If you plan to integrate new technology into your organization, your main goals are to provide solutions to your needs and improve your processes.