Technology Strategy In Small Business

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By - 30 June 2009

These days it is very important for any small business to have a clearly defined technology strategy. There are a lot of ways in which modern (and often cutting edge) technologies can help a small business work both more efficiently and more profitably.

 

This is not to say that every administrator should be replaced by a computer, and every worker with a robot, but it has been proven that a clearly defined technology process and well informed approach to technology strategy will improve the functionality of a business.

 

What is Technology Strategy?

 

Technology in business is ultimately ineffective, unless it is well planned and well maintained. Think carefully about what you need and about what you need it to be able to do it, otherwise you may find that the thousands of $ you have just invested was all for naught.

 

Not only is it not going to save you money, it is likely to cost you more in terms of system maintenance and IT support staff. Technology in business should save far more money than it cost and does not involve hours of training for each staff member as well as frequent instances of downtime and maintenance.

 

If your business has been using the same system for several years, it is understandable that there may be some resistance to changing it. It may be slow and the servers where it is stored may be old and tired, but you are worried about the potential cost of a complete overhaul. This is a completely understandable way of thinking.

 

However, you may find that replacing your old system with a new one may breathe fresh life into your business. All of those little ‘quirks’ which your old software have disappeared and it is easier to do pretty much everything, all because of a simple system upgrade.

 

Technology strategy, in short, is a well formulated plan of how to implement technology in order to enhance the efficiency and productivity of your business.

 

Technology in Business – Where are My Drivers?

 

A well planned technology process will benefit almost any business. If you are running a delivery business, you may consider registering for a corporate mobile phone deal and setting up all of your drivers with GPS-enabled Personal Digital Assistants (PDA’s). This would mean that they would be able to maintain constant contact with your dispatcher and you would be able to know where they have been and how they are progressing along their assigned routes by tracking them online.

 

Will My Systems Like Each Other?

 

If you are managing an online store, you would need a system which will allow you to maintain the security of your customers as well as provide you with an accurate mechanism for reporting on sales levels. This will allow you to manage customer information and support them with their sales.

 

You may need this system to be able to communicate with the system you are using to manage your stock levels, so that customers will be able to tell in real-time whether the item they are ordering is actually in stock, or whether they are going to have to wait for it.

 

Technology Strategy and You.

 

From these examples, you can see how a well formulated technology strategy can benefit a business. If you invest money into systems which are incompatible, you may as well go back to using a typewriter and an abacus. Technology in business needs to be well planned and well researched. Go surf the web or read some computing magazines, and if you are still uncertain may be worth hiring an IT consultant to evaluate your business and its needs as regards technology process if you are uncertain of this.

About the Author

George Butler
Raj Aryan has varied interest in the field of business. In particular, he has a keen interest in SME's and the challenges these businesses face. He has written numerous articles about small business.