IT in business has become an essential aspect of differentiation, lowering the barriers organizations face when penetrating the global economy and expanding internationally. Without leveraging technological innovations, your business will be unable to compete in digitalized markets where consumers are becoming more aware of business processes and focus on quickly evolving trends.
In addition to this, with brand image becoming an important factor that consumers consider when purchasing goods and services, businesses must strategically plan how they can accommodate vast amounts of data to target specific consumers in a cost and time-efficient way.
In order to maximize your business potential, take into consideration the following steps when updating your business IT.
DEVELOP AN IT STRATEGY
Depending on the current position of your business, you may already have an IT strategy in place that you believe is effective in achieving your business goals. However, the essential elements of a successful IT strategy are being able to support your daily operations while also developing long-term strategies that can enable you to respond quickly to change. This is particularly important today, with quickly changing consumer preferences and the increasing number of disruptive innovations highlighting the need for sustainable differentiation and business efficiency.
INVEST IN HYPEROPTIC BROADBAND
With over 2.14 billion digital buyers around the globe, internet speed is becoming increasingly important for businesses to consider when attempting to provide convenient services and a memorable, high-quality user experience. In addition to this, as digital technologies continue to advance and resonate with the consumers of international firms, it’s more important than ever for small businesses to improve the overall experience they provide as a strategy to increase brand equity and ensure customer acquisition and retention.
Hyperoptic broadband services have been attracting attention over the past few months due to providing fast internet speeds at a reduced cost in comparison to competitors like Virgin Media. Their packages ranging from 150MB/s to 1GB/s place them up to 12x faster than the average internet speed, ensuring small- to medium-sized businesses have the capability to leverage the vast resources and applications available through the internet that can significantly enhance your businesses productivity and overall efficiency.
Reducing the need for physical storage and high-powered, expensive hard drives, cloud computing services like HubSpot have revolutionized the IT industry by providing a plethora of in-demand services straight through the internet. Your business now has the opportunity to implement three models of cloud computing services, creating opportunities for you as a business owner to maximize productivity, efficiency, and scalability by saving valuable time and enabling you to meet the changing needs of your business. These include:
- Software as a Service (SaaS)
- Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
- Platform as a Service (PaaS)
Effective cloud-based solutions can be the difference between success and failure, significantly enhancing employee productivity by enabling cross-team collaboration from anywhere in the world. Excellent examples of cloud-based solutions include project management tools, that can accurately track the time taken on projects and tasks, provide file-sharing capabilities, and also video conferencing to maintain strong working relationships.
In addition to this, customer relationship management tools have become an essential part of marketing products and services to modern consumers, enabling businesses to build customer relationships and streamline appropriate processes that can improve customer service and increase profitability.
FINANCIAL TECHNOLOGY (FINTECH)
An innovative solution that leverages artificial intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and aesthetically pleasing interfaces to create user-friendly applications, FinTech has ensured businesses have the ability to manage their finances, understand their customers’ preferences while also eliminating boundaries often faced when accepting international payments.
FinTech companies constantly innovate providing detailed analytics that you can use to focus your business strategy and acquire new customers. However, new FinTech solutions established in the UK are becoming prevalent, leveraging blockchains by connecting businesses to established banks in order to provide international scalability, no hidden fees, a plethora of funding opportunities, and loyalty services that can significantly enhance brand awareness and memorability. As Pollinate explains: “…by accelerating the need for banks to deliver the digital products their customers now need more than ever, COVID-19 may be the catalyst that leads them to greater collaboration with faster moving FinTechs.”
Essential for any business implementing IT strategies and leveraging the benefits of digitalized networks, cybersecurity protects your business hardware, software, and data from criminal damage or theft. Cybersecurity can be implemented in numerous ways, ensuring protection from the significant increase of cyber-attacks that are unfortunately seen as a risk by 68% of business leaders, including:
- Multi-factor authentication
- Company-wide Cybersecurity policies
- Anti-virus software
- Frequent password alteration