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Can New Technology Give You An Edge Over Your Competition?

Can New Technology Give You An Edge Over Your Competition?
This entry is part 6 of 8 in the series Eight Ways to Innovate
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Jane owns a transportation company and was profiled in a different post on the Innovolo blog. She’s an example of a business owner who, despite a horrific economic climate and impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, is deciding to move ahead with incorporating new technologies into her business.

Why is she doing this? Despite social isolation measures to stop the spread of COVID-19 and the widespread closure of non-essential businesses across many countries, now is actually a good time to take an inward look and innovate your business. Technology has a huge impact on your business process and for many businesses it’s an important part of their growth strategy.

In this post in our series on 8 Ways to Innovate Your Business, we’ll take a deep dive on how incorporating new technologies can give you an edge over your competition.

A history of technology in business

Technology has been used to amplify businesses throughout history. Just look at the technological impact that the Industrial Revolution of the 19th century had on modern industry. Steam power and the increased use of rail technology not only sped up production but it radically transformed the way businesses operate and the way consumers access products.

Today, new technology is still the foundation of business startups. Particularly in the tech industry in the last forty years, advancements like the internet and software have revolutionized manufacturing and knowledge industries alike. You may remember how Dave the school teacher, an example you can find here on the Innovolo blog, turned a great new software idea into a business venture.

Examples of technologies that give your business an edge

No matter your business, you probably use technology for assistance every single day. Let’s look at some of the most common ways that new software can boost your business advantage.

Web platforms and content creation

Many businesses use blogs, social media or other web platforms to show their expertise. Blogging, while not new, is a content marketing strategy that informs audiences and builds their trust in innovative and engaging ways. Content marketing as a whole took a huge step forward by incorporating blogs and web platforms in the last twenty years.

Using online content to grow your business is easier than ever with the rise in popularity of do-it-yourself website design platforms like WordPress and Blogger.

Web platform technology is great for: consultant or e-commerce businesses that need to build trust and demonstrate expertise in order to attract new customers and convert readers into customers. Or, small businesses in any field that want to appear at the top of search engine rankings for their geographic locales.

Database management software

Any business that uses data can benefit from database management software. Even if you don’t think data software has a purpose in your organization – think again. Even though you don’t currently capture much data, doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t.

Database software works as a virtual file cabinet and is an obvious choice for tech companies to innovate and streamline their processes. Even other industries like law, the public sector and even the skilled trades can benefit from consistent and secure data management.

Database technology can help companies boost productivity by reducing the amount of paperwork and automating the data entry and storage processes.

Good data also allows you to better engage with your customers. By being able to retrieve data efficiently, you’ll be able to build custom reports and show expertise. Sometimes it’s not about the quantity of data but more about the quality.

Database software is great for: businesses in data-heavy industries like tech, health, public services or manufacturing. Or, any business that can benefit from good data best practices.

Human resource software

Unless you’re a one-person team or the self-titled CEO and supreme leader of your own company of one (sounds a bit lonely, doesn’t it?), you probably employ some staff. That means that you need to manage your human resources.

It can be a huge administrative task to manually and personally administer HR processes. That’s where HR software solutions come in. They can streamline and automate the back end of your business including benefits, payroll, recruiting and lots more.

Just like how earlier in this series we talked about how process automation is key to innovating your business [link to 4. Process], HR software can help save labour time by simplifying administrative tasks that would otherwise eat into your business productivity.

HR software is great for: any business that directly employs staff. The more staff, the bigger the impact from HR process automation.

Communication technology

Whether you have a couple employees or are a large company with lots of staff, communication between employees and teams is vital for your business. Miscommunication can lead to business errors and even unhappy customers.

A great way to improve communication is to incorporate new channels into your business practices. Technology can help with that – try some of the fastest-growing communication platforms for business, such as Slack.

Slack is just one example of many communication platforms out there. Each one can improve how your company practices open communication. The results can be fantastic, as teams and departments create information-sharing channels and share up-to-date data across the company through a consistent platform.

No more trying to remember whether that report you saw came from an email, an inter-office snail mail or a  text message from your colleague. Just open your communication software to find exactly what you’re looking for.

Communication platforms are great for: businesses that employ multiple teams, those that are spread out geographically or those that employ work-from-home consultants.

3 ways to implement new software and technology

  1. You can get in touch with a software development company to custom-build a solution. One drawback with this method is the time and cost to research and work with a company. After deployment, you may need to pay for your own in-house tech support to update and troubleshoot your new custom tech solution.
  2. You can use existing platforms to innovate your technology. One advantage with the software as a service (SaaS) technology model is that customer support and troubleshooting is often handled by the company that you license.
  3. You can partner with Innovolo, who can help outsource your innovation ideas in technology and software to reliable service providers. You’ll work together to figure out the best way to get the most from software and technology platforms for your business.

If you’ve mastered technology at your workplace, be sure to read more in our series on 8 Ways to Innovate Your Business, with the next section about improving your supply chain [link].

Series Navigation<< 7 Innovations To Get More Bang For Your Marketing Bucks3 Ways To Innovate Your Supply Chain >>
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