When it comes to technology, most of the talk is about tomorrow. But the truth is, many of the tools you need are here today. Using technology efficiently can boost business productivity in spades and most of it, surprisingly, is more convenient, collaborative and affordable than the clunky old systems of yesterday.
Let’s start with the granddaddy of all – productivity boosters.
Adopting cloud computing can really supercharge your productivity. It saves money and time, and increases employee productivity and collaboration. Some businesses may be reluctant to use cloud services because of security concerns – but what could be more secure than taking away the threat of fire, electrical surge and theft? A move to the cloud means outsourcing servers and support to some of the biggest, best-resourced (and most secure) online facilities in the world.
If that doesn’t get your heads out of the clouds and into the cloud, think about file management and version control. Staff can collaborate in a single document at the same time, ‘live’ from different locations. No more emailing files, and no more worrying about version control.
The internet of things
Yesterday, everything went back to a hub for storage and compute. Not anymore. The internet of things (IoT) is connecting an increasing range of devices to each other. Today’s gadgets, tracking systems and other smart devices can all help boost your business’s productivity. Social media companies, personal fitness specialists and the healthcare system are all early adopters of the IoT, but they’re just the beginning.
One such example is healthcare data provider Geneia and the year-long remote patient monitoring program it conducted with individuals diagnosed with heart failure. The program revealed that, thanks to the remote patient monitoring technology (IoT), the participants’ quality of life improved and they spent considerably less time in hospital.
Think about the time you could save on deliveries with an app that sends your drivers’ GPS signals back to base or to the customer, estimating delivery time. Imagine connecting easily with the office from home – accessing information, controlling physical facilities (like lights and heating), and much more.
Software… use it or lose it
There is a time- and cost-saving app for just about anything, from payroll to budgets to file-sharing technologies. Whatever you choose to use, it’s important to explore and use its full potential. There is nothing more frustrating – or expensive – than having time-saving technologies sitting around and not being used effectively.
So the key message is: use it or lose it. Without adequate training to help employees adopt these devices and systems into their daily workflows, the benefits will be minimal. But, with the right mix of hardware, software and skilled human operators, your business can benefit hugely from its technology stack.