The Impact Of Technology To Small Businesses

Employment is but a means to provide for your needs and hopefully help you secure your retirement fund. After all, having a job is better than being unemployed. At least, you have the spending power to pay for your needs and that of your family. However, it can’t let you fully enjoy the bigger things in life.

Becoming an entrepreneur means you have a chance to make it in the world and increase your wealth ten-fold. Not only do you have control over how much your business grows but you are no longer limited to the usual limitations of traditional employment.

One may indeed become rich and successful by engaging in business but let us not forget that the risks involved are bigger too. Aside from putting in your own capital (or borrowing it), there is no assurance your business would make it or that it will be safe from the issues affecting the country’s economy (regardless of where you are in the world).

The vast majority of small business owners in Australia are navigating tough conditions with little or no support. While they know their business better than anyone, often they fail to tend to certain nagging issues because, well, they’re too busy; instead, they choose to reassure themselves their business model is strong and push on. If you are one of these people stop and think – if you let those issues persist and grow, cracks will become fissures and your business stands to fail.

Australian small businesses are made up of a huge amount of people that bravely take on their chosen market as well as huge personal risk and employ the majority of the adult population. But they are not helping themselves. Most of these brave individuals are missing the basic governance controls, systems and processes that help push their business into hyperdrive, and protect it from failure.

(Via: http://www.dynamicbusiness.com.au/featured/step-back-and-see-the-cracks-in-your-business.html)

Most business owners micromanage, thinking they can do things all by themselves. And that is usually their first mistake. They get too engrossed in the actual business itself that they forget that they are also there to manage their business, so they can be free to do the manual labor someday and reap the fruits of their hard work.

Also, one thing all business owners can’t avoid or put off for long is automating their operation. Even small family-owned businesses need to establish an online presence or make use of various computing tools to improve their services and the conduct of their business.

Finding the perfect balance between this emerging technology and traditional human elements of customer service is a growing challenge for small businesses. The magic behind this balance stems from digital messaging platforms that merge the abilities of chatbots and humans to create a “hybrid bot”. Whilst the chatbot can process figures and administrative tasks, the human can respond to more complex issues and problems. In effect, the chatbot alleviates the stress on the human and allows them to place their focus on the more important issues at hand. For a small business, this super-agent streamlines both time constraints and problem solving, as the chatbot’s ability to save time and provide assistance to the customer service agent becomes a lifesaver. While it alleviates business pressures, it also creates goodwill amongst customers as it opens more opportunities to communicate on their terms.

While some argue bots are the cost-cutting future of customer engagement, others contend that a human is the most effective way to solve problems. As with so many things, the solution lies somewhere in the middle. The one thing both sides agree on? A business can’t force customers to call it. Those that do send their customers a message loud and clear: They don’t respect consumers’ time, and the consumer will be put on hold.

Consumers have become accustomed to chat and messaging — via apps on their phones and tablets or on their computers. For a small business, it provides an efficient alternative to voice-based communication that limits consumer frustration and opens the door to cost-effective features like AI and bots. Shaping the customer experience is about finding that balance between traditional interaction models and emerging technology to create a seamless experience benefiting both consumer and business.

(Via: http://www.dynamicbusiness.com.au/technology/when-the-human-and-digital-worlds-converge.html)

Indeed, everything has gone digital. And like any other piece of technology, it has its pros and cons. As a business owner, you must always see these things in relation to your business – how it will affect your business and how you can benefit from it.

Small businesses may find it challenging to automate everything that needs to be computerized at first because of limited funds, manpower, and time constraints but only businesses that learned to innovate and keep up with the many technological advancements remained to be at the forefront of the business world.

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