How Business Technology Has Improved Over The YearsMarch 4, 2021 No Comments
Featured article by Scott Blake
Technology made the proliferation of large companies possible; large companies today make technology indispensable. From the humblest business run by one person to humongous multi-national corporations employing thousands, technology is proving to be one crucial tool that any business of any size simply cannot do without.
Since time immemorial, businesses have always used whatever technology is available, whether to improve production, to attract more customers, or to find new markets. And as computers entered the picture in the last century, a whole new age was ushered in; the old ways of doing business became obsolete.
The Age of Information entered the world’s consciousness, promising all sorts of technological advances that would ostensibly make the world a more pleasant place to live. But for businesses to enjoy its benefits, they’d have to evolve, adapt, and build the necessary infrastructure.
New avenues for increasing revenues, new ways of attracting customers, as well as advances in manufacturing—a myriad of ways of doing business have opened up, made possible by businesses embracing technology.
The business technologies that sprung up revolutionized the way businesses were done in the decades before the Age of Information. It totally overhauled things, and businesses that didn’t adapt quickly enough fell by the wayside. The pandemic has also further pushed businesses to go digital.
What Is Business Technology?
Modern businesses that don’t keep up and take advantage of technological advancements have a snowball’s chance in hell to make it. Failing to adapt is fatal to any business. A famous example of this is Kodak, a company that was, for most of the 20th century, the camera andphotographic film company. Their brand was so connected with cameras that in some parts of the world, ‘Kodak’ was a verb that meant ‘take a photograph.’
One of their engineers actually developed the world’s first digital camera way back in 1975. But the management buried the invention because it would affect the company’s photographic film business. Kodak’s leaders failed to see that the digital camera is a disruptive technology that can turn the camera business on its head.
Its leadership got too hung up on the company’s traditional product—the camera film. They failed to see the digital camera revolution. What’s tragic is that one of their own people started it. In 2012, Kodak filed for bankruptcy. Kodak, together with giant companies like Nokia, Xerox, Blockbuster, and others, shows that failing to adapt to new business technologies can bring any company down, no matter its size.
What Are The Improvements In Business Technology Over The Years?
Today’s business technologies help companies provide better products and services, keep track of assets and business transactions, improve marketing strategies, and increase productivity. Business technology also refers to the use of information, engineering, data, and science in business operations.
There are many areas in business that were radically changed by technology. Below are some of these technologies that helped businesses improved through the years:
One of the most radical ways business tech has improved is the way people communicate in the workplace and with clients. The advancement of smartphones, chat apps, collaboration tools, social networking sites, and social media brought with them unprecedented levels of connectivity.
People are seldom out of contact. Communication from management to employees, among employees, with clients, or in general, is quick and easy through video chats and video conferences.
With email, voice, text, or video chat, the modern workplace has more choices today in communication compared with businesses in the 20th century, when the main form of communication is done through landline phones. Today, businesses have the use of social apps like Skype, Signal, Zoom, and others. Techs like these became even more essential during the pandemic, as they made it possible for some employees to work remotely.
Had the pandemic occurred during the 80s, for example, the effect would have been even more catastrophic, and not only for businesses. But now, businesses even have the option of engaging companies like Call Cowboy to handle their telecommunication needs.
2. Computers Paved The Way
Modern computers caused a change in the way companies conduct business in the latter part of the 20th century. Computers today give workers mobility and flexibility that enable them to do more work for less time. Likewise, business applications now only take minutes to finish certain tasks, where previously it took weeks. For example, accounting software made it possible to look up financial records and customize reports about a company’s financial health.
Moreover, computers made it possible to run apps and other software that further improve business operations. For instance, making a pitch for clients is easier, thanks to the presentation software that anyone can use on the computer.
Computers can also help you oversee the company’s daily operations, like check inventory lists, see which employees are assigned to what projects, check deliveries, etc. And with the advent of pocket computers called smartphones, doing these tasks is made even easier.
3. Cashless Collection
Another disruptive technology that occurred was in the area of payments. Carrying and accepting cash is no longer necessary in business transactions. Even credit and debit cards would now seem like relics of a bygone era. Payment methods like PayPal and other online cashless transactions are getting more common.
Online stores and brick and mortar establishments have also embraced these techs, and before long, smartphones also got involved, with Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Venmo making paying for things easier. Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies are also becoming accepted as payment methods.
4. Work Organization
There are also technical tools businesses can use to keep them fully organized. For instance, there are many Project Management Software used by various companies for scheduling, project planning, and resource allocation. It helps teams and project managers with making project documents easily accessible, budget control, and quality management.
As a platform for simplifying collaboration among stakeholders, project management software is unbeatable. It helps to increase a business’ quality and quantity of work. It even helps in risk assessment by flagging a task that could go awry and could result in a fiasco.
5. Business Productivity Tools
Modern businesses also have the use of tools like productivity software that can help them come up with various ways of dealing with challenges businesses face each day. These tools can help managers to track a project’s development easily. They can also provide help and offer solutions, if needed, to keep performance on par and ensure that deadlines are met.
Tools like these are prime examples of technology’s role in increasing an industry’s productivity and improving performance. The evolution of business technology enabled workers to do things quickly and efficiently, and partnered with organization tools, this means overall improved performance.
6. Keeping Management Costs Down
Every company’s end goal is to be in the black. So, the development of many business technologies certainly is a big boost for a lot of businesses. A smaller-sized company, armed with all the modern business tools, can manage a much larger operation. Redundancies are minimized, the staff is streamlined, and superfluous tasks and personnel are avoided, with the result that management costs are reduced.
SaaS (software as a service) tools are one of these business techs that can help keep management costs down. They can introduce automation where applicable, remove manual handling that’s susceptible to human errors, and promote smoother integration of various tasks. Automated processes give a more accurate result and keep better track of these results, which can make record-keeping and accessibility a breeze.
With all these tech advancements, businesses can also be exposed to different kinds of security problems. And because modern problems need modern solutions, technology can also provide security from threats that come from using technology. There are techs that can give businesses end-to-end encryption (E2EE) that are hardware- and software-based. These can give information added security so that only authorized parties can retrieve and access sensitive data.
Other features that add a level of security to the workplace are facial recognition and fingerprint scanning. In the Age of Information, information is a veritable treasure trove, that’s why innovative security measures, such as AI-based algorithms as protection against data breaches are implemented.
8. Software Customization
Modern businesses today can also customize software according to what a business requires. This kind of customization is especially helpful for managing everyday tasks. An example of this type of software commonly used by modern businesses is the facilities management software.
This type of software is utilized for managing entire facilities including the areas inside the facilities. It’s also used to ascertain the most efficient layout of an office, the proper space allocation for different projects, assign workspaces to disparate groups, and oversee maintenance.
Software like this is helpful for businesses of all sizes because of their adaptability to any business’s needs. As each business has its own needs and requirements, this type of technology that can be adjusted and customized to apply to their circumstances is a huge help.
9. Digital Marketing Strategies
Promotion and product marketing have also undergone a transformation. A website isn’t just to inform the world of your existence, or to hawk products. A business can elevate its brand and profile not only locally but across the country and the whole world. The entry of Search Engine Optimization in marketing strategy has given businesses a wider option of making their brands more visible, adding a scientific component to advertising.
10. Teamwork And Collaboration Is Increased
These new techs have also transformed how teams work together. Technology made it easier for people to work together and to connect with each other remotely, and at all hours of the day, if need be. It affected the way employees collaborate, and has resulted in greater flexibility in terms of communication.
This improved communication, where workers can connect with other workers no matter where they are, has fostered greater teamwork and esprit de corps. It has also helped managers to be more hands-on and made supervising workers more effective. Improved collaboration, especially when it comes to projects, helped companies keep their customers updated on the project’s status.
11. Augmented Reality In Businesses
Augmented Reality (AR) is no longer just an amusing novelty concept used on games and mobile apps. It’s now used in businesses like retail and construction. In apparel and cosmetic retailers, AR is used in combination with mirrors and cameras, which enable the shopper to try out clothes, letting them customize various products without actually visiting the physical store.
Customers can also try out a new look with different makeups, as well as furniture shops, to enable shoppers to see what furniture is best for their homes. All these can be done using an app installed on smartphones.
AR in construction is also becoming the next big thing. Partnered with Virtual Reality, these two techs allow users to experience a space before its built, which can be a huge help during the design process. The ability to spot errors early would help engineers tremendously, and would also mean huge savings. Architects and designers can work together, and can give an accurate analysis of the structure to be built. The design would be vastly improved.
12. Better Time Management
Poor time management has always been a problem among businesses. But today, technologies are proving to be a great help in providing companies with tools to improve time management. They help optimize workers’ daily routine, making scheduling of tasks more efficient, as well as letting administrators focus less on the routine and the mundane, freeing them to work on the more essential matters.
With more efficient use of company time, meeting deadlines on projects and other tasks should improve. This increase in work efficiency would in turn leads to customer satisfaction. As these advancements in business techs improve time management, workers have more time to be creative and to develop new ideas.
It is almost impossible to quantify the impact of technology on business. Traditional workplaces are now extremely rare, and workplaces are changed in ways unimaginable for workers even as recently as thirty or even twenty years ago. For these new techs, not adapting them is no longer an option for businesses; they’re essential for a company’s existence. Modern businesses simply cannot risk compromising their security, productivity, and profitability.
Before, these ‘new-fangled’ technologies would seem like luxuries or gimmicks; now, they’re necessities. Businesses must learn to adapt or else go extinct. As Bob Dylan says in one of his songs, ‘…you better start swimmin’ or you’ll sink like a stone. For the times, they are a-changin’.
Scott Blake is a technology geek who has more than ten years of experience in the blogging world. Scott loves to read everything tech-related so that he can share information that can make people’s lives easier through his blog. Whenever possible, Scott also tries new technology products for the firsthand experience! Because of the helpful content he creates and publishes, his blog and the guest posts he submits to other websites always have a good following.
During his free time, Scott loves to play computer games. His favorite being battle royale games like Fortnite, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, and Call of Duty: Warzone.
APPLICATION INTEGRATION, CLOUD COMPUTING, DATA and ANALYTICS , MOBILE, SECURITY, SOCIAL BUSINESS