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Thursday 13 April 2017
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Thursday 13 April 2017
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Business & Technology

Today’s technology helps a lot of business to work more efficiently, lower costs, increase productivity and many other wonderful things. The result is that many business and the people within get very excited about deploying modern technology to improve the bottom line.

What business must be clear about technology is that technology by itself will do nothing to help the business in any way, shape or form, bad or great. Technology is simple a device, a tool. Nothing else.

Technology can be, and often is, a great business enhancer. This takes place when the technology is acquired with a clear purpose to perform a specific function with a specific time period.

I have seen many business getting the latest and best computer, software system, etc. just because it is the best and will save money. After it has been deployed, they try to figure out how they can use it to improve business… Often the end-result is the expenditure of a significant amount of resources to find out it is not what they needed and expected.

If the business needs just a calculator, then get a calculator. A PC would be an overkill.

Let me put this in a different perspective: At home, we purchase broom and a mop because we need to clean the house. We may “upgrade” to a vacuum cleaner because it will allow us to clean the house quicker and with less work. Maybe the vacuum cleaner will also allow us to do other things that will also help us do other chores quicker and more efficiently. Then again, we do not get a vacuum cleaner because it is the latest model, etc. and then work out what we are going to do with it.

When thinking about getting new technology or tools, there are a few basic steps that must be followed before proceeding with the purchase:

  1. What is it that the business needs to improve? What are the challenges that need to be met?
  2. What options are available that can be used for this purpose? (technology, hiring more people, outsourcing the work, other non-technology tools, etc.)
  3. What resources will the business need to have to make and keep it functional and in good working order? (financial, employees, third parties, maintenance, running costs, etc.)
  4. Which of all available options are most suited to the business? What changes in processes and systems will the business need to make to have it working as expected? What will the business impact be by doing all these changes?
  5. What are the reviews in the market about the options being considered?

One last item to keep in mind: Businesses must have clear processes and systems in place for the technology or tools or third party to work. If the business does not have them, then define then and only look for technology or tools after the systems and processes are clearly defined.

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