“How can we operate and innovate like a tech company?” This is the central issue facing most companies today. If we look in retrospect, we’ll realize that it’s the tech giants that have wrought the most profound change in the world of business. Consequently, businesses of all sizes are becoming aware of the fact that disruptive technology will be a game-changer for their business.
But what distinguishes these tech giants from other companies? They’re transforming their core business by adopting new technology that revolves around data and digital. Companies like Cisco and IBM have become some of the most innovative hubs in the past generation thanks to their adoption of new technology that allows them to move faster and at a greater scale than their competitors.
That brings us to the main question: which technologies can help your business innovate and accelerate? There are four technologies that are currently trending and should become the focus for your innovation and growth. Let’s take a closer look.
Shift From the Traditional Ways Businesses Operate with Cloud Computing
Have you wondered why an increasing number of digitally mature businesses are moving their infrastructure to the cloud? From high-quality security to the ability to access files from anywhere online, cloud computing can positively transform a business. And the technology will only continue to grow in the future.
The clouds that we have today fall into four categories: infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), serverless, and software as a service (SaaS).
Here are five primary reasons why you should adopt this new technology and turn to cloud computing services:
Cloud computing can eliminate the expense of purchasing software and hardware, as well as for setting up on-site datacenters. You won’t have to pay IT professionals for managing the infrastructure, 24/7 electricity for power and cooling, and racks of servers.
You can gain access to cloud computing services with a few clicks of a mouse. These services are offered self-service and on-demand so you can get a hold of them in literally minutes. You won’t have to worry about planning or setting up.
Instead of your IT team wasting time on racking and stacking the infrastructure, they can spend quality time on reaching more important business goals.
A network of secure data centers has more benefits than one single corporate data center. These networks of data centers are regularly updated to the latest generation of fast and high-performing computing hardware.
Cloud providers are following a wide range of policies and are following a broad set of technologies that can ensure the security of your data. You can rest assured that your data will be protected from outside threats.
However, it’s important to mention that not all clouds are the same and that one type of cloud computing is not ideal for all businesses. You need to determine the type of cloud computing that’s suitable for your business needs and then choose between the three types of cloud computing architecture:
- Public cloud: With a public cloud, all hardware, software and other additional infrastructure are owned and managed by the cloud provider. The most popular cloud providers include Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, Rackspace Cloud, and IBM Cloud.
- Private cloud: a private cloud is one which is located on the company’s on-site datacenter and is managed by the company. However, you can also pay a third-party service provider to host your private cloud.
- Hybrid: Hybrid clouds will likely become the most popular technology when transforming a business. Why? Because companies are finding that private clouds and public clouds are not the best option. Sometimes, you need a combination of both. A hybrid cloud can offer your business more deployment options, greater flexibility, and superior security.
Embrace the Full Range of Opportunities That Big Data Can Offer
If your company embraces the full range of opportunities that big data can offer, you won’t just gain a competitive advantage. You’ll be able to transform your business models by driving growth in new ways and new sectors.
It’s no secret that big data is a critical ingredient in making good decisions about products and services, your employees, and your strategy. Big data isn’t going anywhere soon. It’ll only become a more popular way of transforming a business as it can be made into meaningful business analytics.
Although there’s a great deal of value to be extracted from big data, most companies are only using 1% of the data effectively. But how can you unlock real value from big data? With the help of data science!
Data science is a mix of data interference, statistics, algorithm, and technology to resolve complex puzzles. You can use this method to understand the complex behaviors of your customers, industry trends, and insights to make better business decisions.
Let’s take a look at what role big data plays in transforming a business and fueling business growth:
You can measure the response of your customers to services or products you offer and those that you’re planning to launch in the future.
Insight into market trends.
You can discover market trends and modify your products or services accordingly.
If big data shows that the product or service you’re planning to launch won’t be popular, you can use the data to improve them and offer something your customers would like to use.
Innovative ideas testing.
If you have a new idea about a service/ product, you can test it before you lunch it to market. Big data will analyze current trends and tell you if the product/service will be in demand for the future.
Locate new demographics.
Maybe there’s an entire demographics out there in the world that you haven’t targeted yet but whose behaviors are a fit for the products and services your offer. Big data can help you locate a new target market that you can take advantage of.
Drive Your Business Forward With Data Analysis
Data analysis is another new technology that’s transforming business models worldwide. Many companies have seen boosted revenue, increased profits, and improved customer satisfaction and retention since they’ve hired an analytics team. Data analysis can help leaders make strategic decisions, achieve major goals, and solve complex problems.
If you’re a digital leader and are wondering how adopting this technology can transform your business, take a look at the following three steps:
Step 1: Choose the most relevant data
Data analysis can give you access to all kinds of information that can easily take your business model to the next level. However, to truly take advantage of the technology and incorporate it appropriately into your digital transformation strategy, you need to choose the most relevant data. This can include insights into your customers, your customers’ buying patterns, or what your competitors are planning.
Step 2: Use that data to increase revenue
After you choose the most relevant data for your business, you need to use that data to build a stronger strategy and change your thinking through smarter products.
Let’s take Netflix as an example. The brand used big data analytics for targeted advertising. It collects huge data from its over 100 million subscribers and uses that information to send subscribers suggestions of the next show they should watch next. Basically, they’re using your past data to give them insights on what movies or shows interest you the most.
Step 3: Enhance your collaboration
To fully take advantage of the potential of data analysis, your employees must be collaborating across department lines. Because at the end of the day, collaboration is what sets your company apart. Teams that fail to collaborate will be left behind.
One way of bringing employees closer together to collaborate is through innovation labs. These innovation labs act as incubators within a company where teams come together to discuss ideas. Each person can bring their own experience and perspective to create advanced business models that meet the needs of your customers.
Improve Workflow and Increase Your Profits with Artificial Intelligence
One of the most promoted technology trends of the moment is artificial intelligence (AI). In 2016, total investment in AI reached somewhere between $26 billion to $39 billion. Every day, AI solutions are moving from research labs to commercially successful deployments. These solutions revolve around AI algorithms and modeling, computing power, and massive amounts of digital data.
You can see robots picking and packing in warehouses. Customer service chatbots are handling customer complaints. Systems are analyzing images and videos to identify people or products. Whether you’re a small startup company or a large enterprise, AI can play a vital role in improving your workflow and increasing your profits.
Transforming a business with the help of artificial intelligence can happen in several ways:
Use AI for data collection and analysis.
If you’re a larger company, AI is crucial if you have access to large quantities of consumer data. AI is also essential if you’re a small business that wants to draw meaningful conclusions from smaller amounts of data.
Find and recruit the best talent.
Machine learning can determine which previous hiring practices were the most successful. It can guide you into where to look for candidates and how to reach out to them. What’s more, it can also tell you what types of communication will appeal the most to specific candidates, inform recruiters about a candidate’s work history, and what would be a candidate’s perfect role at the company.
Transfer of time-consuming tasks.
AI can help your employees get rid of monotonous tasks and free them up to do more meaningful work. These time-consuming tasks include accounting, scheduling, and customer support.
Improved customer service.
According to Gartner, by 2020, 25% of customer service operations will "integrate virtual customer assistant (VCA) or chatbot technology across engagement channels.”
According to 2018 McKinsey report, the impact of AI is "likely to be most substantial in marketing and sales." You can use AI-based advertizing platforms developed by companies like Google and Facebook to target your consumers.
One thing is for sure: digital transformation is changing the way businesses operate and will continue to do so in the future. You should take full advantage of the most-hyped technologies that we discussed in the text to move your business forward and secure your place on the market.
Transforming a business is a challenging task, but you can stay ahead of your competition if you just:
- Shift from the traditional ways businesses operate with Cloud Computing.
- Drive your business forward with the Internet of Things.
- Embrace the full range of opportunities that Big Data can offer.
- Improve workflow and increase your profits with Artificial Intelligence.