‘Workplace productivity’ is a buzzword that you hear quite often as companies are always on the lookout for ways to increase it. Since workload increases and roles become more complex as time goes by, it’s understandable why business owners keep trying to figure out how to improve that particular aspect of their enterprise. After all, those who run companies are among the people who bear the most weight of unproductivity.
Fortunately, technology holds some answers that can help your business run more productively. As tech continues to advance, it becomes more favorable to business operations and workplace efficiency, and productivity. Gone are the days when web services, email, fax, and landline telephones were all the technology you needed for a productive business.
The current tech trends offer so much more and are easier to integrate into existing systems. If your business is open to digital transformation, then there are enough options out there for you to try. Here are ten tech trends that’ll help increase business productivity:
- Phone Management System
Even though there are many options for instant communication such as text messaging, chat, and email, telephones still remain an excellent mode of business communication. However, traditional phone systems can be quite unreliable, time-consuming, and tedious to use. Upgrading to Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) can make things easier when handling business calls.
In addition, there are tech tools such as the Dialer app that can significantly improve your phone system by automating calls from your call list while protecting your private number. This improves caller productivity by taking care of all your inbound and outbound calls without so much physical input.
Here are other ways integrating technology into your phone system can enhance productivity:
- Improved call handling: Having an automated phone system allows for the routing of calls to the appropriate team members without someone present to do it manually.
- Improved response times: Upgrading your phone system changes how your employees conduct business transactions. It ensures that the right person promptly attends to a particular customer request without back-and-forth or confusion over who’s supposed to attend to which customer.
- Better internal communications: Integrating the phone system with customer relationship management (CRM) tools or other internal communication tools can make teams more effective by enabling seamless sharing of valuable information.
- Accessibility: Using phone tech tools keeps your employees connected at all times. It also gives them the ability to make and receive business calls from smartphones, desktops, or tablets. This keeps them productive despite their physical location. One example of such a tool is the Power Dialer, which significantly simplifies calling and increases the number of calls your business can make every day.
- Call tracking and measuring: Some phone systems have elaborate call reporting technology that provides analytics to help your teams improve customer service and engagement. Teams can therefore focus on the service channels that are working best instead of wasting time and resources on what’s not working.
- Cloud Computing
Before COVID-19 hit the world in 2020, most businesses didn’t see the need to migrate processes to the cloud. However, companies that hadn’t migrated by the time lockdowns and minimal in-person contact guidelines were put in place lost workforce productivity. This potentially resulted in massive financial losses.
While no one had anticipated and planned for the pandemic, such situations only enhance the need for businesses to prioritize digital transformation. Cloud computing has moved to the top of tech trends that improve business continuity and productivity.
It’s best to make cloud computing part of your business IT strategy as it provides greater access to information and flexibility in performing business tasks online. This ensures that your team doesn’t get stuck when the physical business environment is hostile or unstable.
It also reduces downtime, allows for bringing your own device (BYOD) practices, and facilitates team collaboration. All these things benefit employees and improve their productivity.
- Team Communication Software
For a long time, email was the best workplace communication technology. Now, workplace communication has evolved with team communication software. There are tools available to help create virtual meeting rooms and chatrooms for different departments. They also store data that are searchable, ensuring that you never lose any critical communication.
What’s more, they allow teams to see what others are working on, eliminating the possibility of wasting time due to task duplication. If your business has remote teams, communication is seamless and easy despite the geographical locations of team members. Such programs make meetings more productive by allowing file and screen sharing and removing travel and time costs.
Other benefits of team communication tools that boost productivity include:
- Streamlined workflow
- Better team engagement
- Improved accountability
- Better work organization
- Enhanced project management
- Improved team relationships
- Scheduling Software
Improving productivity in a business requires a systematic approach to enable you to get the most out of each workday. You need to know how to schedule things to avoid missing out on any critical issue in the company. Applications to that effect exist to help you and your team stay up to date with what everyone should be doing and when.
Calendar applications allow integration and instant access on multiple devices and with other software. Through them, you can ensure that you and your team are on schedule and maximizing work time. You’ll be surprised how using simple tech tools can improve productivity in the long run.
- Time Tracking Tools
Another technology you can implement in your business to effectively boost productivity is a time tracking tool. This merges well with the scheduling software discussed above. In order to improve productivity, you need to track and measure what’s going on in your company first. If you skip that step, gaps in productivity can easily go unnoticed.
Time tracking tools are excellent for employees looking to stay organized and focused in their work. The perception of time is often vague, and it can be hard to pinpoint exactly what someone did even after a hard day of work. By logging in and recording the time spent on each task with the help of time tracking tools, it becomes easier to see how everyone spent their work hours.
If you’re wondering how to monitor work from home employees, it’s easier than you think. Most modern software will be easy to set up and can help you get a better sense of how productive your company is
The technology also provides clear insights on how much time certain tasks require. You never have to worry about overestimating or underestimating how long it would take to complete a project. This would help with future planning as well as remuneration.
- Task Management Tools
These address the general need for businesses to organize, visualize, and prioritize work. The primary use of these tools is to help your team keep everything in order, which includes establishing priorities and visualizing the progress in different stages of projects until completion.
Numerous project management apps and software are available that can make managing business tasks more seamless for you and your team. Using digital solutions makes communication and collaboration with teams easier and quicker. Research shows that using task management tools can boost productivity rates by 20-30%.
- Virtual Private Networks
Virtual private networks or VPNs can greatly enhance productivity by allowing your teams to work remotely without fear of compromising the security of business information. When a team member must be away from the office, such as staying home with a sick family member, they can still log into work systems and remain productive.
As more people switch to remote work, cybersecurity becomes a crucial issue, with cyberattack cases rising daily. Those can make businesses with an online presence, particularly teams connecting to business software on various Wi-Fi networks and hotspots, vulnerable to attacks.
However, VPN technology ensures that your team members can work from wherever they are while keeping business and personal data safe. This way, you also maintain high productivity levels.
There are many VPN providers you can choose from, so you need to get services from a reputable company. Do thorough research to find the VPN that’s most suitable for your business needs.
- Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence (AI) is considered among the top tech trends paramount to the digital transformation in businesses and society at large. This technology is set to influence how people and machines interact. The pandemic has accelerated its use, but many people are also increasingly becoming aware of its numerous business and personal benefits. You can set up AI to carry out repetitive tasks that take a lot of the team’s time otherwise.
AI technology can help your business gain a competitive advantage through better and error-free process automation, smarter business decisions, and improved productivity. You can use a simple algorithm to improve data collection and reporting or the enterprise resource planning (ERP) module for your marketing or accounting department.
You can use AI solutions for a wide range of specific business problems. Turning to AI can improve your business and workflow processes, enhancing productivity. Some of the typical business areas where you can integrate AI include:
- Data processing
- Virtual assistants
- Customer support
- Administrative tasks
As AI technology grows and advances, features such as voice recognition may become more advantageous to businesses by freeing up numerous human hours. This will significantly enhance productivity as employees’ efforts can be directed elsewhere.
- The Internet of Things
The Internet of Things (IoT) has revolutionized the business world through connected devices or ‘things’ that allow for adequate real-time data collection and reporting. You can analyze the data gathered from connected devices to get valuable business insights. This can result in high efficiency, better employee and customer experiences, improved worker safety, and, ultimately, better sales and return on interest.
There are so many ways you can take advantage of IoT for your business. You can monitor and track your inventory, IT infrastructure, shipping, energy usage, and many other business areas. The benefits of IoT in business include but aren’t limited to the following:
- Faster and easier transmission of data
- Enhanced physical processes and remote access
- Less network and equipment downtime
- Faster and better decision-making
- Reduced error and defects
- Improved products, services, and operations
- Better customer satisfaction
One of the best applications of this tech is the installation of IoT sensors in products to monitor their movement. You can also use those sensors in delivery trucks to monitor how drivers interact with their assigned vehicles as well as the speed and health of the trucks. Such information can help you determine when vehicles need service or the ways to maximize mileage per gallon of fuel.
- Customer Service Technology
Customer service tools and software allow you to collect and organize customer data more efficiently in a way that’s specific to your business. You’re able to store all customer information in a central and accessible location. Such data include customer and visitor contacts and interaction history, leads, and similar details.
With a single integrated source of information, you have a more streamlined and productive customer support team. This is because the team will have all the information about a specific customer without asking them to repeat their history with the business each time they get in touch with your company. This, in turn, improves customer engagement, interaction, and experience.
However, you need a customer service tool that’s suitable for the kind of business you have since not all the options on the market are equal. They come in many varieties, each meant for different industries, target markets, and preferences. These are the most common customer support tech tools you’ll encounter:
- Mobile and web applications
- Virtual assistants and chatbots
- Call center and phone support tools with automatic call routing
- Live chats and instant messaging
- Self-service or knowledge base tools
- Omni-channel communication
Adopting innovative customer service tech has the potential to dramatically change how your business interacts with existing and potential customers alike. Generally, your service delivery will improve as your team can do their work more effectively.
Since increasing business productivity is crucial in business and work dynamics, you must find ways to enhance it. Luckily, technology seems to have solutions for most issues that help keep teams motivated and on track with their tasks. There are numerous technologies to boost productivity and efficiency through automation, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence, among others.
From what’s been discussed above, you can see that tech trends may help increase productivity in every aspect of a company. That’s why you have to find what’s most suitable for your industry and specific business before incorporating it into your daily operations.