Technology is always changing and evolving to compete with the ever growing and competitive business markets of this technological age, as such, it’s vitally important to make sure your business keeps up to date with the latest technology, otherwise you may be at risk of getting left behind! In the following guide, we’ll take you through the important steps your business can take to check whether your business is suffering from outdated technology and software.
Keep an eye out for the warning signs
Do you or other employees complain about the current system?
Are your current employees complaining about the speed of your current system? Is your current software causing unnecessary pain to your employees and preventing them from completing their daily tasks? Usability is vital to the business and your business application system. If employees are experiencing issues daily, they may start to work outside the system, eliminating the value and effectiveness completely. It’s important for you to speak with your colleagues and employees and identify issues that can affect their day to day job, recognise if there is scope for potential solutions to improve their daily tasks and decide if it is time to update your current legacy applications.
Are you working on legacy applications?
Is your business application system slow? Do you have to manually input data into multiple platforms? Do you find it difficult to integrate it with other applications in your business? If your business is working on legacy applications, you could be at risk of a knock-on impact across different business departments. It’s important to take into consideration if your system has remote access readily available. Many employees in today’s age work remotely, whether that involves field workers or staff that work from home.
More up to date application systems ensure you’re fully integrated, compliant with the latest cyber security and data protection, as well as give you access to the latest functionality to streamline your business and maintain a happy and productive workplace.
Can you integrate cloud capabilities into your system?
Are you able to access your data from multiple devices? Do you have your data backed up regularly? Most up to date application systems now have cloud storage and capabilities. In recent years, many businesses have moved to fully integrated cloud solutions, allowing your workers access to full integration across the business, improving collaboration across the different business areas. With many businesses in general becoming more remote and working on the move, your application systems should complement the change in technology by allowing access to all the features remotely. Providing cloud access would allow information sharing for effective collaboration, which would enable you to be both proactive and reactive. What’s more, IDG claim that 69% of businesses are already using cloud technology – It’s time to jump onboard!
Reporting can be difficult?
Having to juggle between disparate application systems to manually acquire information or to analyse poorly maintained data can be a huge drain on both employee resources and time. Newer, up to date application systems allows you to initiate user-friendly reporting and access to dashboards to access information in one location.
By implementing a fully integrated system that provides a complete view of your business, confidence in your application systems will grow, allowing you and your team to access all the business functions instead of relying heavily on individuals, helping your business become more agile and competitive in the market. Most up to date systems will let you create easy to read dashboards across multiple systems, allowing you to have full transparency of your business and reports where necessary.
Do you over rely on key individuals to develop and maintain your application systems?
Historic business application systems, particularly those that have been developed in-house or are heavily customised, are normally reliant on one or two people in the business to keep the system in running order. These people know the ins and outs of the system and, in most cases, are the only ones to use the system. What do you do if these people leave the organisation? To avoid this, it’s important to have a fully integrated system where everyone throughout the business can access areas of the business, guaranteeing there will always be someone who can support the system.
Deciding on a new software system can be difficult, it’s important to review your processes daily to determine whether you are using a dated system. Evaluate how your business has changed over the years and determine whether you will benefit from an upgrade so all your employees can be experts on a new system.
Is your business looking at future growth and new opportunities?
Does your current software integrate with other tools your team use? Do you have a complete view of your business? Are your systems accessible out of hours? Do you know who has access to your data? Does your software need upgrading or replacing every few years?
We’re in an electronic and mobile world – with 2.6 billion smartphones being used globally. As such, today’s generation has certain expectations. We expect to have the ability to consume information quickly, no matter where we are. Transparency is key for analysis of productivity, efficiencies, accuracy and the ability to fulfill the needs of our customers.
How you can make the right changes?
Changing to a new system doesn’t have to be painful. Implementation times are much faster, processes are much smoother, and many businesses including your competitors are moving from working on outdated application systems, to upgrading their system as well as their mind frame.
Take the time to review how your colleagues spend their days to identify pain points and help you understand how you could free time by improving technology. Assess where there is scope for efficiencies, identify small wins, and become fitter for the future, one step at a time. At which point you’ll be able to identify varying levels of access rights to ensure each employee and department obtain the information they require without delays, all the while keeping your data secure. Any software solution you use should grow with you.
If you are interested in updating your current system, we have provided a few action points you can take to help you identify a need for change.
- Audit your current process to discover any manual process, data silos, paper trails or bottlenecks to make sure you have complete transparency of your business
- Cleanse your data to make sure you have up to date information and minimise internal miscommunication.
- Take note of daily complaints/monitor responses, common issues and complaints of your current system.
- Identify if your current system is integrated? Can you move information from one to another with duplicating data and avoid complexity? If not, it’s likely your business software could benefit from an upgrade.
- Speak to a specialist software provider, outline what you’ve discovered in your system audit, what are your needs? Ask for advice on different ways software and cloud technology can be integrated into your business to improve productivity.
If you’re interested in improving your business functions with Xperience, or maybe you would like more information? Get in touch for a chat and find out how our team of experts can help improve your business.