Throughout history, businesses find a way to integrate technology in their operations to make them more efficient. From production line improvements to customer service developments, businesses never fail to progress using the current technology. The radio was used for advertising, then the telephone was used to handle customer care concerns, and now the internet is the hub for all things business-related. But how, in practical terms, does technology actually help businesses? And can it even improve more to make future businesses more efficient?
In the 60s and 70s, video calls were a thing of science fantasy. Yet, fast forward to today, it has become such an integral part of our daily work. Video streaming essentially made working from home almost the same as working in the office (minus the physicality of moving in a shared space), and it enabled multinational employment. This allows companies to hire a wide variety of skilled employees and save costs on office space by not requiring every employee to report to the office.
This also opens up a new form of the industry: fitness instructors, online teachers, and other coaching or education-based services can now offer their business remotely.
Perhaps one of the innovations with the widest use-case scenarios is in the field of augmented reality (AR). It can be used for various things, making difficult tasks more convenient and some formerly impossible ones possible. Currently, AR allows e-commerce products to be seen online and interacted with by customers as if it’s in front of them.
This development is significant as the world changes to an online-based marketplace. It also lets businesses train their employees better, resulting in a higher quality of work from the onset while spending less time on theoretical discussions and more on practical applications.
Artificial Intelligence isn’t what we initially thought it would be. It’s not about robots gaining sentience or taking over the world. If anything, AI is here to help us — and you’ve probably experienced their help too. Perhaps the most common form of AI in business is through the use of chatbots. For example, websites offering customer service support normally answer the same set of questions every day, and it simply makes sense to automate this process. It’s such an effective method that experts believe it will take over at least 85% of customer service interactions in the near future.
Internet of Things
Watches, mirrors, microwaves, lights — most of these devices can now connect to the internet. We don’t question them either, as we can all see the convenience WiFi interaction can make. However, a few years back, something as strange as a regular household device connected to the internet was deemed to be impossible.
That’s not the case anymore, and it’s definitely for businesses’ benefit. This allows for more automation, as you can program such devices and track their progress through their attached multi-platform software. It can even be utilized to make your business operations even more seamless and efficient. For example, scheduling your office’s lights or air conditioning can be done through an app, and monitoring your business’s security system can also be done. This is all thanks to hardware with baked-in WiFi connectivity.
The biggest difference between the world then and now is how instantaneous everything is. Even banking operations, which took the notorious “seven to ten business days” or even “ten to fifteen business days,” depending on where you are, are made instantaneous. We can check our balance, make bank transfers that will immediately reflect, and even withdraw and deposit rather easily. This is all because of the innovations in the field of financial technology.
Perhaps it is in this industry where the “movers and shakers” of the business landscape are. Due to the developments here, every other business that can use wireless and seamless money transfer directly benefits. And in the near future, as technological research and developments progress further, we can expect financial technology to make more revolutionary improvements.
It Doesn’t Stop There
We might think that we have seen the best that technology has to offer. Simply put, our grandfathers probably felt the same when they first developed the radio or telegram. Humanity will still bear witness to multiple technological developments for years to come. Right now, breakthroughs are being made regarding internet accessibility, giving even those in the most remote locations fast internet access. In the near future, we can expect more seamless integration of different types of business from a wide variety of locations.