Embracing a Total Automation Strategy - Trends in Business Technology- Part 2
With a changing world comes the need for a new perspective. There has been a paradigm shift in the business world. High tech equipment and systems, coupled with smart data or autonomous functions are no longer just for “tech companies.” Every company, in every industry, has a responsibility to embrace a “total automation” strategy.
For example, it has become the permanent new normal for companies to have distributed workers all relying on cloud computing. These workers are expected to do the same work, but off premise. The same level of collaboration and communication is expected, yet the employees are distributed. There is a certain category of people that are going to say work from home is now standard offering for their job description. Businesses must then adapt to offer flexible part-time work from home while keeping collaboration and connectedness alive within the team. There is a new spectrum of employees who want to work from the office, migratory employees who want to work from home, or even some employees who want to move to another country and still do the same job previously done in office. The most productive strategy for companies right now is to offer flexible work programs where employees have the chance to work from the office when face-to-face- time is valuable, and to work off premise when more computer facing work is needed. Every company must take a look at their policies, and update them accordingly.
Another example of this shift in businesses adapting to a technology driven society is e-commerce. Previously, there was a threshold for e-commerce, only certain size businesses had it. But, due to shifts during the pandemic, every single business had to offer an e-commerce market. This could be curbside service, ordering ahead, or delivery. This shifts the business world, specifically in IT solutions, because every size business is operating through e-commerce solutions.
One thing to consider when reviewing your company’s IT stance or total automation strategy is where your money is being spent. I was recently working with a medium sized business and upon a deep dive, they were surprised to learn that 20% of the general overhead went to software licensing and service fees. At first impression, a company thinks “that’s got to go.” But, you must consider the counter costs. The counter cost is bringing in people to do all this stuff that you’ve automated in your business. You must view it in context of your company’s total automation strategy. 20% is a good deal, and it’s a sign of progress for automation. Every company, whether a tech company or not, must put all the systems together and look at them holistically. Then, the people put in place to manage these communications between systems can do a checkup and relate it to the financial and business side of the strategy.
A wider scale adoption of an Internet of Things (IOT) or total automation strategy is on the horizon for every company. It plays into the enablement of the cloud and provides more usability of IOT. An increase in networks and behaviors around interconnectivity and interoperability leads to IOT strategies. One thing I would encourage all companies to set as a goal over the next year is to develop a clear IOT/total automation strategy for their business. The strategy should answer these questions: How do we get information from remote devices? How are we communicating that information in a thoughtful way? How are we using data for more than storage and overloading our clouds? How are we interpreting this data at the management level and executive level? The data will provide better insights about our business then what our customers want, and how we can best serve them. COVID19 probably accelerated this decentralization of businesses, but the quicker you can adjust your strategies, the quicker you can be an innovator in your field.
Stay tuned for Part 3 in our "Trends in Business Technology" series coming soon!