You've done your research, purchased the best technology solutions and trained your employees how to use them. But you have an inkling that you aren't using your tech infrastructure to the fullest. In fact, you're pretty sure there are products you've never even opened. This is all too familiar for many business owners. To get the most out of your business technology, consider the following tips:
Understand What You Have
As your business has grown and changed, so has your technology. It's a good idea to take a look at what technology everyone in your organization uses and what they use it for. See how many computers, laptops and cellphones are sitting in a closet unused and what you can get rid of. If you subscribe to several software programs that have similar functions, discuss with your employees which one they like best and unsubscribe from the others. You should also ask your employees about the biggest challenges in their jobs when it comes to technology. Do they hate your email program or your CRM? Is there a better solution that can do more? The better you understand what technology you already have and how your employees use it, the more you can get out of it.
Develop an Agile Work Process
Technology is changing and adapting all the time, so your business needs to do the same to keep up. When there are changes and upgrades to your internal communication system or to your social media channels, your organization needs to be agile and flexible. This mentality needs to come from the top down in your business. If you're open to trying new solutions instead of continuing to do things the way they've always been done, your employees will adapt to changes in their own workflows more easily. The only way you can use your technology to the fullest extent is to be open to changes and use it in different ways as your company and your tech solutions evolve.
Keep up With Updates
Software is upgraded continuously, so it's important you keep up with the changes. Not only do updates contain security patches and fix bugs, they also can open up new features, services and customization options. It's not enough to just click “Update” when you're prompted to, however. You should know what's going on with the technology you use, which means you should read patch notes, blog articles and forums to see the latest news. For example, Customer FX regularly posts articles about Infor CRM and its development. Sites like CNET and Tech Radar also are reliable places to find the latest information on technology solutions and the best ways to use them.
Take Advantage of Customer Help
Many technology platforms host blogs, forums and video channels to help their customers get the most out of the products. For example, WordPress, Google, Facebook and Adobe have extensive content to help you learn the ins and outs of their system. If you're looking for a specific function in your technology infrastructure, these are great places to start. If you can't find it by searching yourself, take advantage of customer service phone numbers and appointments to speak with someone directly about what you want to get out of the software.