How to Choose Technology for Your Business No Matter What Your Business Is!

Choosing the right technology for your firm can be a daunting challenge. New technologies let companies do tasks that would have been considered impossible just ten years ago. Yet an overwhelming array of new solutions to old problems can raise enough questions to send a business owner reaching for the closest bottle of aspirin.

You know your business. Choose technology based on your company’s unique characteristics. Consider:

  • The size of your company.
  • The size of your customer base.
  • Technology used by your customers.
  • Needs of segments of your customers.
  • Technologies your company understands.

Sometimes you will decide that adopting new technology is not the best course of action. At other times, change is necessary. With the right methodology, choosing new technologies doesn’t have to give you a migraine.

1. Keep Your Knowledge of New Technologies Current

Technology proceeds through an evolutionary process. To comprehend the latest technical trends, you need to see that process. To understand the technology of today, you need to understand the technology of yesterday, last week, and last year.

If you keep current on new developments, understanding the state of the art is a simple matter of picking up the latest trade journal. If you do not keep current, you will have to cram a lot of information on old trends to choose between new technologies.

2. Consider Your Future Needs

Do you know how many people will use the technology? Is the technology compatible with other technologies? What features does it have? How will the technology scale as your business grows? Can the technology expand your business?

3. Look at Your Present Technology

Many businesses do not use many of the features of their technology. You may have individuals at your firm who can use your present technology to solve your current problems without investing in new technology. Perhaps those individuals can educate others.

4. Consider Security

Security is a serious concern. It can affect a business’ viability. Will new technology compromise business security? Could it lead to serious theft or expose customer data? Have solid answers to these questions before adopting any new technology.

5. Ask an Expert

It can be hard to know for sure what technologies are best suited for your firm, especially when catching up on new technologies. When you don’t know the answers, a conversation with an expert on technologies or an expert on firms such as yours may provide insight. Consultants or information technology staffing may know things your employees do not.

6. Meet the Needs of your Company

Do not fall into the trap of investing in technologies that serve no purpose of your company. Countless technologies have made headlines, then attracted millions or billions in capital before falling by the wayside. Consider Google Glass, the Segway, OS/2, or MySpace. Cool technologies? Perhaps. Good for business? No.

7. Simplify your Business Processes

Look at the tasks currently completed by your firm. Choose technologies that will make those tasks faster or less error prone, requiring fewer human hours or less talent. Any new technology that does not make tasks easier must increase profitability or expand your business. Otherwise, reject it.

8. Consider Your Clients

Some new technologies will allow you to reach a much larger customer base. Others will enable you to provide better service to your existing clients. But technologies which degrade the customer experience, while making things easier for your business, might be technologies you should avoid.

9. Use Metrics to Track the Impact of New Technologies

Adopting a new technology may cause a temporary loss of productivity. You could also see delays in serving your clients. Be prepared for a learning curve. Where feasible, adopt new technology first in a small part of your business. Gradually expand its use after you have seen solid data showing the improvements. Continue monitoring progress as you expand the use of the new technology.

Conclusion

Selecting new technologies is vital to any business. It doesn’t have to cause a migraine. If you keep current with new developments and analyze the unique aspects of your business and clients, choosing new technologies is easy.

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