A few decades ago, simple tasks like business transactions and administration required several hours to complete. You needed to join a long queue at the bank to send, receive, or withdraw your own money. A simple accounting task could take hours to complete. However, things have changed now, and work efficiency has improved thanks to technological advancement.
All industries, including the oil and gas sector, have benefited immensely from this advancement, making it possible to lift medium and high-volume fluids from wellbores using electric submersible pumps. Despite the immense benefits of tech for business development and work efficiency, some businesses, especially SMEs, find it difficult to introduce it. If you are in that category, here are some effective ways to implement technology into your business.
Why technology implementation is important
In this competitive business environment, you cannot continue to rely on the old manual and ineffective ways of doing business. Whether you are in the service industry, production, or into transport business, effective technology implementation can make your operations easier and cost-effective. That’s from bookkeeping to marketing; you need to be innovative to improve workflow and keep you in business. By introducing tech, you are assured of the following;
- Improves work efficiency
- More work in less time
- Help you save money by hiring fewer people
- Improves communication among employees, customers, and suppliers
- Enhances business security, e.g., employing effective firewall and antivirus mechanisms can prevent data breaches
- Puts you ahead of competitors
- Helps you to reach new target audiences globally
- It creates new opportunities
How to implement technology in your business
Implementing technology in your business can be a difficult task, considering the cost involved and the hiring of professionals or training existing workers. It may attract some resistance, especially from employees. Some employees see technology as a threat since it’s taking up jobs. However, since the benefits far exceed the drawbacks introducing technology becomes the right choice.
Choose the right technology
Your main purpose in introducing technology is to address the needs of your business and solve a problem; hence, the need to choose the right technology. This can be challenging, especially for small and medium-sized businesses. As technology keeps evolving, a software or app that worked perfectly years back may not be fit for purpose today.
A few years ago, typewriters served the amazing purpose of getting your documents typed, but you cannot rely on that technology in this modern era. With Microsoft Word installed on your computer, you can type your documents, get them printed, or email them to wherever.
So as you seek to implement technology in your business, choose;
- Something that improves your business activities and makes work easy
- A multipurpose tech that fulfills several tasks
- Meets your business size and needs, i.e., can take up tasks without slowing down.
- Comes at a reasonable cost
- Newest tech used by other competitors
- Tech you can easily integrate into the business
- Easy to learn, use, and adaptable
- Compatible with existing tech
- It can be used for a longer period
- Addresses employees’ challenges
Involve your employees in the process
The tech you seek to implement is for business improvement and requires the operation of your employees to make it effective. Therefore, they should be in the know of your intentions, and their opinions must be considered. That aside, unless you plan to hire new professionals or train your existing workers, it is practically useless to bring in something no one can work with or operate.
They should know why you want to introduce that tech and how it would benefit the company. Also, adopting the new technology may create work redundancy; hence, it requires that you lay off some workers. Those who will be affected should be informed and compensated if required.
Some technologies are entirely new and not an upgrade of the existing ones. This makes them complicated and mostly not user-friendly. The system or software provider, therefore, need to train your employees on how it works, troubleshooting mechanisms, and how to handle emergencies. This helps your employees to operate the system effectively to improve productivity.
You cannot introduce a new system/technology at once. It should be piloted first in bits before a total rollout. Piloting helps workers to master how it works, connect it with the existing system, identify the flaws in the system, and how best to go about it. After a successful trial, you can now go full-scale implementation.
What the new technology should do
It should reduce workers’ burden
Technology is meant for easy and efficient work delivery, so anything aside from that is a waste of money. The technology you are introducing should come in to solve a problem, eliminate redundancy and make the employees effective. If your receptionist does manual logins of clients and visitors, a tool like Microsoft Excel can make the work easier while having the chance to also save all entries on the cloud using Onedrive. A cumbersome accounting work can easily be completed with Zoho Books, FreshBooks, or Xero.
Solve an existing problem
If you have a pertaining problem affecting productivity in the workplace, you may have to introduce technology to solve that challenge.
For example, if you experience workers’ absenteeism, lateness, or inefficiencies, you can ensure effective employee monitoring with online time tracking. You can also introduce a workplace biometric tracking system where your workers log in when they arrive at work and out when leaving.
Replace existing ineffective tech
As already mentioned, technology keeps evolving, and what was very efficient some years ago may not be fit for purpose today. As such most tech firms keep introducing new updates for software and apps to meet current needs. However, some become totally garbage, and even programmers move on.
For example, if you use a computer with Windows XP, there are a few things you do on that machine. Most apps aren’t compatible with it; hence, relying on that operating system for your work needs is absolutely a waste of time. So, you may have to install Windows 10 or 11. The same goes for accounting, sales, marketing, production, etc. software, and apps. Once they become obsolete and ineffective, you need a new one.
the printing industry has experienced various forms of innovations with the advancement in technology. Once upon a time, it was woodblock printing, a movable type printing system, black and white; then came colored printing, and now 3D, 4D, etc. The same has happened in every industry. As new technology emerges, it is only prudent to adopt it to stay competitive. Being innovative and current in your field brings you more customers.
The competitive business environment doesn’t permit any serious business owner to be reluctant to technological change and implementation. It is either you implement tech to stay in business or foldup. And you may need to upgrade your system as time goes on. The outbreak of Covid-19 even proved the importance of such innovations. But this should be done slowly within a period and in consultation with your workers. Introducing a new tech at once can jeopardize your business operations as workers will take time to adopt it.