In this day and age, no business or company can survive without using some form of technology. When we refer to technology, it goes beyond computers and the internet. Mobile devices, apps, cloud storage, workforce trackers, inventory management software and similar enterprise systems have left an indelible mark in the way businesses are run.
Although technology is growing at an explosive rate, not all forms or types are useful for every business. Here are a few examples of powerful technology that can benefit your workplace and help your business run more smoothly and efficiently.
1. Cloud storage and cloud-based services
It started with cloud storage services being offered to the public. Over time, companies developed private cloud storage and hybrid storage systems. The assortment of cloud options has provided an alternative avenue for businesses to access and use software, services and systems. No longer do businesses have to invest in computers or hard drives with massive physical storage space. As a result, businesses can cut costs in hardware, software, human resources and other business functions.
2. Gamification of training and educational programs
It’s human nature to be competitive, find ways to achieve a goal, and earn rewards for one’s efforts. Gamification or integrating aspects of gaming into traditionally non-gaming activities can encourage employees or staff to learn new skills or enhance existing ones in an engaging and fun manner.
By introducing game mechanics, companies can encourage “behavior-reward” thinking and enhance engagement in the workplace.
There are many ways gamification can be implemented in companies. Some companies have used game mechanics to administer compliance tests. Traditionally, employees see compliance tests as dull and boring. To encourage participation, companies can offer badges or rewards to employees who attain the highest scores or can complete the tasks quickly. This drives employees to do better and engage in healthy competition. They are enticed to put in a higher quality performance and complete tasks faster than their co-workers or the other test takers in order to win the prize.
3. Reliance on mobile devices
In the past, desktops and laptops were an essential piece of technology for most people. This electronic gadget offered users the ability to do a variety of tasks. For general consumers, they could use it to conduct research on items they wish to purchase online, contact businesses with questions, make payments and so on. Businesses, on the other hand, have used personal computers to learn more about their target market, find ways to reach them, and promote the brand.
Personal computers have lost their hold on the market over the years as they have become replaced by smaller mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Consumers expect their devices to have a browser or some way to access the internet. To remain competitive, businesses now need to develop strategies that consider the needs of mobile users.
Mobile devices have changed the way how businesses market their brand, sell their products and services, and communicate with their target market. Internally, it has changed how they hire employees, encourage collaboration between staff, and train workers, among others.
4. Rise of location-awareness software
Apps and software that encourage users to reveal their current location are growing more popular.
Businesses can use the location data to gain more insight on their market or its users. Within the business, workforce trackers and similar types of software allow companies to keep track of their human assets. These apps also enhance communication between employees and make it easier for staff to share data without the need for people to be physically present inside the office.
5. 3D Printing
With this type of manufacturing process, a product is created by removing material layer by layer. Initially, 3D printers have offered a way for users to create prototypes quickly and without spending a fortune. Businesses can now also this technology to create and develop final products as well. This includes shoes, prosthetic limbs and accessories for mobile device users, among others.
Technology continually evolves at a rapid pace. For businesses to remain competitive, they must always be aware of what is being developed, anticipate trends, and adapt before the competition does. The more aware and flexible a company is, the higher the likelihood of its success.
Guest article written by: Oliver Threlfall is the CEO of TechLoc, a provider of innovative assets and workforce management technology for businesses. TechLoc asset tracking and business systems now has three international offices in the US, Canada and Australia and continues to roll out all over the globe. A biology major at Deakin University and a born entrepreneur, Oliver also founded Steamatic Australia, a leading cleaning and restoration firm servicing Australian businesses and families.