Technology is the backbone of a successful 21st century small business. It allows small business owners to check email, monitor progress of jobs, and connect with clients outside the office and office hours. It’s this flexibility that builds strong client relationships and business connections. The bottom line is bringing innovation to the client through following industry trends.

The tools to attain this level of client satisfaction varies from industry to industry, though the constants are a smartphone, tablet and a laptop computer. The business side of every small business, from an artist to a media company, creates its foundation on technology, innovation and the ability to deliver an end product.

 
Business Process Automation

Business process automation (BPA) is advantageous to internal processes, marketing and product production. With internal processes, it streamlines lines of communications between departments and maintains consistency. This creates a business atmosphere that is easier to manage, complete tasks and make deadlines. The increase in efficiency creates a stronger bottom-line for businesses.

Marketing tasks can be automated. These require an expert to monitor, to maintain the business’ branding and to keep a strong focus on company goals. Targeting intended audiences, this streamlines the process of reaching new and existing clients. There are many industry specific software options that can streamline business processes through automation. Automation allows a business to bid for larger jobs, and remain competitive. The bottom line for all small businesses is efficiency. Technology through automated processes allows a small business to operate more efficiently and lower operating costs.

 
Using the correct technology

The technology that works best for most small businesses is a cell phone and laptop computer. With these two pieces of equipment, a business can be run from anywhere, including internationally. It is vital to stay up-to-date with equipment and software to remain competitive. To be connected means an increased ability to increase clientele and profits.

International travel requires a different set of technology needs. Besides the power adapter to keep equipment charges, there is a different line of software programs to access for use. Some of the best programs are international wireless Hotspot, Ring Central, Zoom Meeting, Join Me and Infusion Soft.

 
Keys to successful technology use

One of the keys to a successful business is the ability to analyze the marketplace and then follow the trends. It’s important to stay up-to-date with the demands of the marketplace and be able to address a client’s current needs. Technology allows a small business to see and adapt to new trends, and stay competitive. A strong business plan and ethics combined with the smart use of technology create a strong marketplace presence. These include the ability to take risks, to have a problem-solving mindset and keeping the organization under a goal-oriented philosophy.

 
Staying competitive

Technology allows small businesses to maintain a consistent product. It gives the ability to share changes quicker and keep records of these changes. It allows a business to grow quicker, maintain consistency and provides better lines of communication between departments. Social media platforms also help by adding visibility for a small business. LinkedIn is very popular for businesses, as it offers a place to promote a business, product or service. In addition, it gives businesses an opportunity to expand through the large pool of employment seeking individuals on the service.
 

 
This article was written by Karen Ulvestad for Small Business Pulse
 

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