Ask any company director or CEO what the most significant developments in business over the last 20 years have been and they will probably answer with one word. Technology.
No matter what the type of business, the integration of technology, particularly via the internet, has become a pivotal factor in the way companies work. Here we look at some of the most significant aspects of this as we ask – why is technology important in business?
It could be argued that communication is the single most important benefit brought about by technology and can be traced back to the humble email. Initially, email was valuable because it made communicating with colleagues much faster, but was later adopted as a way to communicate with customers too and is still said, by many, to be the most effective marketing tool.
Now, of course, there is a myriad of ways to communicate digitally, social media perhaps being the most salient example. Social media has become increasingly important because businesses can share images and video on it along with text and it is much cheaper than, for example, producing and broadcasting TV ads.
When it comes to the way companies manage finances, technology has also made a dramatic impact. Gone are the days when records used to be written down and employees are no longer paid in cash, but their salary is transferred directly into their bank accounts.
Indeed, financial technology (fintech) spans a broad range of areas and is currently a hot topic throughout the business world. Hymans Robertson, for example, offer companies packages that help them deal with the financial challenges of the future, investments, pensions and analytics all facilitated through digital technology.
Warehouse inventory technology and digital logistic solutions are both good examples of how technology is changing the way in which businesses operate. The logistics sector, in particular, has been revolutionized by technology such as global positioning systems (GPS) that guide drivers, helping them get from A to B more efficiently and avoid hotspots where traffic is heavy or where there has been an accident.
The changes that have occurred in the logistics sector, have to a large degree, been driven by another technological behemoth – ecommerce. The technology that allows people to browse and purchase goods online may be the most significant factor that defines modern business practice and encapsulates why is technology important in business.