Each day new technologies are emerging, designed to help businesses improve their productivity. A common problem for many businesses is ignoring these updates while their competitors embrace them. The result is then that your competition is getting more accomplished in a shorter amount of time, making it harder to stay ahead of them. If you want to keep up with your competition, get more done, and at lower costs, you need to modernize your business. Here are 6 ways you can improve productivity through modernization.
#1 – Update Your Current Applications
The first thing you should look to do is update the applications you are currently using. As applications get older, they become less efficient compared to more modern options. You then end up spending a lot just to keep them running. In fact, according to new data from Prolifics, maintenance for legacy applications makes up 60-80% of the IT budget in the average corporation.
Application modernization is the process of identifying which IT aspects of your business need an upgrade, then developing a plan to do so. This could mean simply swapping out a module or two, or it could be a complete overhaul. If you already have great productivity systems in place, but they are a little out of date, then this is a strategy you’ll want to explore.
#2 – Project Management Software
Some businesses, on the other hand, don’t have these productivity systems in place yet. If that’s the case, the first step to modernizing your business will be to get them set up. The first one you should explore is project management software. Project management software is used for planning, scheduling and monitoring resource allocation.
With one of these tools, you’ll have a single place where you can manage all aspects of your project. There are many project management software options available, but to help you get started, here is a list of some of the best.
#3 – Customer Relationship Management
Just like you should have software to manage your projects, you should also have software to manage your customers. Customer management software allows you to track information about each of your customers, such as their contact information, their stage of the buyer’s journey, their past purchases, and more. With all of this important information in one spot, it becomes a lot easier for your sales team to talk to customers.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tools can provide several benefits to your business, including:
- Better customer service
- Automation of simple tasks
- Improved communication between team members
- Advanced data analysis
If you want to significantly improve the way you interact with your customers, and make your entire sales operation more productive in the process, you should absolutely have a solid CRM set up within your business.
#4 – Communication Tools
To improve productivity throughout your business, your employees need to be able to talk to one another quickly. While email works for a lot of situations, sometimes you just need the ability to have a quick conversation, possibly with a group. When an email or phone calls won’t suffice, you’ll need a new tool for communication.
Luckily, there are plenty of options. Slack is a popular choice, as is Discord. There are even many communication apps you can get for free, so you don’t have to spend additional money on a new tool. Look for communication apps that allow your team to talk quickly, share files, and keep a record of conversations. Just these three things alone will make your team much more productive.
#5 – Customer Service Applications
As your business grows larger, you’ll have more customer service requests to deal with. If you don’t take some steps to modernize this process, you’ll quickly find that your team is getting overwhelmed and not working productively. There are two main things you can do to make your customer service response more efficient.
The first is using customer service software. With one of these tools, you can easily assign service request tickets, assign them to the right person, and track their progress. If you have a large customer service operation with multiple departments, this type of software is a must-have.
The other thing you can do is allow automation to handle some of the requests for you. A great way to do this is by adding a chatbot feature to your website. With a chatbot, customers can get answers to commonly asked questions, so that your team doesn’t have to answer the same thing over and over again. Chatbots mimic having a real conversation, so your customers get the answers they need and a good experience at the same time.
#6 – Faster Hardware
Finally, as you do more and more with your computers, you’ll need to upgrade the hardware. Using all the new software and tools mentioned above won’t work too well if you’re running an older system. You need a modern computer that can handle multiple advanced software solutions at the same time. If you try to use older hardware, every application will run more slowly, defeating the purpose of improving productivity.
If you don’t want to upgrade your entire computer system, you can instead upgrade a few key parts of it. Some things you can do are install more RAM, switch from an HD storage drive to an SSD, and add a faster processor. Which option you choose will depend on what’s currently inside your computer, your budget, and how big of a performance boost you are after. For more information on how to speed up a computer, you can check out this guide.
Always Look to Improve Productivity
The thing about productivity is that you can’t just achieve it once. Even if you find a great way to improve the productivity of your business, that same method could become obsolete within a few months. Modernizing your business means not only finding improvements for now but also putting systems in place so that you are always using the most productive methods. Make it a habit to regularly review the systems and technologies in place at your business and you can continue to stay productive for a long time to come.