Thriving businesses tend to be innovation-averse. Since many already found success using the tech tools they currently have, business leaders tend to be skeptical of the benefits of emerging technologies. Most just don’t see the reason behind overhauling their existing, effective systems – expending numerous resources in the process – when they might safely make as much profit as they are.
For example, when it comes to payment technologies, just 3 percent of SMBs bother with mobile payment options, like Apple and Android Pay. In fact, years after the U.S.’s transition to EMV cards, only about 28 percent of businesses are equipped to scan chips – and among those that can’t, 64 percent doubt they ever would implement the new tech, regardless of how much more secure it would make their business.
Successful SMBs are hesitant to integrate new tech, but many new entrepreneurs don’t have the luxury of refusing technology. Many industries are ruthless to competing businesses, and in many cases, the only way nascent business leaders can find a foothold is by embracing promising tech. While existing execs struggle to adopt technology, emerging entrepreneurs can more easily pivot their business plans to benefit from tech with the following significant advantages:
Streamlines Office Processes and Provides New Work Opportunities
The only way new entrepreneurs with new startups can survive in competitive markets is by being faster and more agile than their large, lumbering competitors. In large, established businesses, nearly every business decision requires approval upon approval, so projects can take twice longer (or more) than necessary to complete. For such companies to implement technological change, it could cost millions and require months of upheaval, lowering productivity even further.
Conversely, startups and small businesses have fewer layers of management and less to lose by experimenting with new tech. In fact, adding tech might give the company more power to complete projects even faster. This offers SMBs opportunities to acquire new clients and expand into new fields sooner than their tech-less competitors did. Thus, tech provides a competitive edge to entrepreneurs who might otherwise have blunt and ineffectual businesses.
Eases Customer Interactions and Creates New Ways to Make Sales
Communication is perhaps the most vital skill to any business. Time and again, history shows that business leaders blessed with the gift of effortless communication succeed, while their quiet, awkward, and dishonest peers fail – or at least fall behind.
As mentioned before, communication is not easy in large businesses; even with the aid of technologies like email and instant messaging, it can take days for important notes to reach the right people. Conversely, small businesses can establish effective communication from the start, reaching employees quickly using a variety of useful tech. Flexible SMBs were the first to create truly mobile workforces by adopting devices and software that allowed employees to work wherever, whenever. As a result, an entrepreneur’s entire staff is fully connected and able to contribute to business goals.
Further, a culture of enhanced communication tech can help startups better reach and influence target audiences. For example, instead of fitting social media into a preexisting marketing campaign, entrepreneurs can lay social media pages as foundations for their long-term marketing strategies. Undoubtedly, the future will bring new social media options that younger, newer entrepreneurs can exploit while older, duller businesses blunder without it.
Saves Money by Increasing Productivity and Automating Processes
Large companies are powerful because they have hundreds (or thousands) of workers dedicated to achieving business goals. Within such organizations, millions of human-hours are worked every day in pursuit of success. Large companies can support such massive workforces because they are pulling in massive profits – but the same cannot be said of startups.
Brand-new businesses lack the funding to cultivate hordes of workers, which means they must rely on technology to increase their productivity enough to be competitive. Fortunately, SMBs can rely on machine learning and automation to supplement their employees’ work. Instead of bringing on new employees – each of which cost between six to nine months’ salary just to hire and train – new entrepreneurs can keep their teams small and nimble by relying on smart technologies, instead.
Perhaps the most important lesson for new entrepreneurs is not that technology is vital in a business’s beginning stages, but rather that business leaders should remain open-minded to technology even after carving a niche and establishing success. Technology is good, especially for businesses, and new technology offers greater opportunities for everyone.