You need Information Technology working for you
Just about every business uses technology in their daily operations. We use word processing and email to communicate with co-workers, vendors and customers. Spreadsheets and databases help us collect and analyse business data. Webpages deliver information, research and sophisticated applications right to our desks. Without technology, most business would not be able to operate.
Small businesses can use technology to automate entire processes. E-commerce has completely automated sales and payment processing. Materials management, logistics, manufacturing, accounting, and human resources can all be automated with technology. Business technology puts the power of large enterprise into the hands of small business.
Business technology offers more than improved productivity and communication. Business graphics give meaning to the data. Software can model information and predict outcomes. Web applications use algorithms to choose the right product or course of action. In today’s economy, Business Information Systems can help a small business make decisions and implement strategy.
Small businesses can benefit from all of these enhancements, and needs them to compete in the marketplace. By using more of what business technology has to offer, a small business can gain a distinct advantage.
Every business relies on the tools of their trade
A mechanic has his wrenches. Doctors have needles. Lawyers have filing cabinets. They all use certain tools for their trade. By investing in better tools they can gain a competitive advantage. But the tools don’t do the work. The worker must combine the tools with knowledge and skill to perform their job. How they use those tools makes all the difference.
They also have tools for business. All three use business technology to bill clients, organize records, and keep the books. Most small businesses actually use many of the same basic tools to get the job done.
For most small businesses, the underlying technology is the same. Workstations, servers, a network, and an Internet router are the hardware essentials. Even the software is the same for many types of businesses. QuickBooks, Microsoft Office, and web browsers are used by millions of businesses every day. But every small business has different needs.
Technology should be designed to meet the unique demands of each business. A mechanic probably need a credit card reader and a good website. The doctor might need video conferencing and faster Internet. The lawyer needs a high capacity printer. In fact, every piece of technology should be selected to meet the individual needs of the business. Selecting the right tools makes it easier to use them properly.
Technology is the tools for business, but the information system is the technique for using those tools. Information Systems, or IS, is the technology, the people that use it, and the processes for manipulating information. Who is going to enter the data? Where do the reports go? When is the process complete? When the tools are used properly, you have a better Information System, and a better business.
The right technology can make your business
Many small businesses can really benefit from a small advantage. Business technology can provide those advantages in many different ways. Integrating the right technology into a well designed Information System ensures the most benefit.
Information Technology can give a small business more capability. Selling products anywhere in the world, tracking trucks and materials as they move around the city, or accessing critical documents from home, and on the road. These are just some of the ways that technology can enable a small business to do the things that couldn’t be done before.
Every small business would like to do more. Increased productivity is the primary focus of Information Technology. There are countless software applications and services that provide powerful tools for communications, collaboration and publishing. Marketing tools can replicate simple advertising efforts across a sea of social media, search engines, and advertising networks. Specialized software and services provide turn-key solutions for specific industries and business processes.
Many of these powerful tools have advanced features and sophisticated integration capabilities. Small businesses typically overlook or dismiss these features. It is important to train yourself, and your workers to use the full capabilities of each application. Better tools and better skills will significantly improve productivity.