Technology is inescapable. More than three billion people are on the internet today; as a business, it is vital to keep up with current technology or you risk losing opportunities to your competition. Information and applications are readily available at your fingertips, with the unspoken promise of ongoing improvement. This is what customers are expecting and this is how the new workforce functions. What is new today, is already outdated tomorrow, and the impact of this mindset has challenged companies to stay relevant in the wake of change.
The Need to Keep Up with Technology and Stay Ahead of Competition
Technological innovations have been pivotal in creating efficiencies within companies, dramatically reducing the cost of doing business. From streamlining processes to simplifying communications, employing the right technology enables you to increase productivity by freeing up your employees to focus on what matters. Staying ahead of technology is a necessity for any business looking for long-term stability and growth. The impact can be as simple as enticing a new, skilled workforce by keeping up with the tools they are accustomed to or utilizing less human resources to scale your business.
How to Keep Up
To succeed and drive your business forward, every single member of your organization, no matter their position, should have a solid grasp of what’s happening in the technology landscape. The internet provides an endless supply of free resources; blogs, newsletters, podcasts and even social media can help your employees sharpen or adapt to new skills at their own pace. For those that need a break from the screen, turn to technical and design magazines or local events. You don’t need to be a technical guru, but every employee should be keeping up with new apps, email add-ons, and other workplace hacks to implement for enhanced efficiency.
Reasons Not to Dive Too Deep
It can be challenging to stay ahead of the tech game and thrive when your business and competitive landscape are constantly changing. There is rarely a distinguished front-runner among technology trends, so you’re often left spinning your wheels and comparing technology frameworks that your employees may not be comfortable with. Vetting new and improved technologies can easily distract you from your priorities, draining resources and escalating costs. Hiring an in-house resource with specific experience with technology can be hard to find and is also a costly expense. While many businesses want an on-site solution, step back and ask yourself, “what does my business need?”
Why You Should Hire a Consultant
When a business is working through a challenging problem, the day-to-day politics, emotions or even availability of resources can make it difficult to move forward and make decisions. Challenges can become stagnant and grow into larger issues when all that is needed is an unbiased perspective on the business and its’ processes. Before your business gets to this point, consider hiring a consultant, someone with expertise in a specific technology trend or program who can provide an outside influence and flexible resources that can enhance your vision.
Technology will continue to advance, with or without you. Falling behind creates an ever-widening gap between the business, your clients, and employees. While you can’t have a deep knowledge of everything, you can retain some control by pointing your focus towards a high-level knowledge of security, systems, and trends. Even if you’re outsourcing, it’s important for each business to understand their own security and systems, so that your vendor isn’t defining your system security without your own understanding. As for the rest, leave the deep diving to consultants that specialize in the other areas of technology.