Running a successful business in 2021 means using technology to the maximum. Business technologies are changing faster than ever, with new developments changing the way we work, live, and communicate.
However, have you wondered which business technologies are most important for the coming year?
2020 has completely changed the way many of us do business. So, it’s no surprise that 2021 is all about technological advances.
To learn more, keep reading to find six of the biggest business technologies—plus, how you can use them to improve your business. They can both small businesses and large corporations work more effectively.
1. Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence, or AI, is an important business technology to watch. Although AI can sound intimidating, like something out of a sci-fi movie, it’s actually an accessible technology that can help even small businesses.
There’s plenty that AI can do for your business. It’s very effective with data, so you can use AI to analyze data, look for fraud, or look for patterns in large sets of data.
It can do this much more efficiently and accurately than human eyes. You might find AI a great asset to your company.
Machine learning is also a type of AI, where computers and systems remember information and learn over time. If you use Siri or Alexa, these are examples of machine learning.
Your business can use machine learning to streamline processes, share information easily, and keep track of meetings and appointments.
Chatbots are another popular type of AI. Chatbots are an effective customer service tool, often seen on websites and social media.
Chatbots use AI to answer questions that your customers ask, pointing them in the right direction. Unlike customer service agents, which are limited to business hours, chatbots give your business 24/7 support, with no wait times.
They can improve your customer service. They’re so effective that some users don’t even realize they’re talking to a chatbot and not a person.
2. 3D Printing
3D printing is another example of technology in business. You might be surprised at how important 3D printers have become to business, as they have revolutionized the manufacturing industry.
No longer do companies need to outsource all of their manufacturing, waiting weeks for prototypes or models to be ready. Instead, businesses can produce their own designs and products in a matter of hours.
They work by using computer software to print physical objects, layering materials on top of one another, one layer at a time. Usually, they work with polymers and plastics, but metals and ceramics can also be used.
Many businesses are using 3D printers for modeling in the fields of architecture, healthcare, aviation, and engineering. It allows businesses to make models at a much faster rate than ever before and gives them more creative control.
If you’re thinking of purchasing a 3D printer, they can be more affordable than you might think, so even small businesses can benefit.
3. Remote Work
One of the biggest trends for both 2020 and 2021 is remote work. Experts estimate that one out of every four Americans is working remotely in 2021, thanks to the impacts of the pandemic and improvements in remote technology.
Thanks to advances in home internet speed, cloud computing, and connectivity apps like Slack and Trello, it’s easier than ever to work from anywhere in the world.
With cloud computing, companies are no longer storing all of their data on a central server based in the office. By storing things virtually, via the cloud, it’s easier to access company files and documents from anywhere, as long as you have an internet connection.
This means companies are no longer tied to hiring workers from their local area–teams can be made up from staff anywhere in the world. It’s also increased the way we work, as more of us are working for ourselves, freelancing or consulting for a range of companies.
If you’re new to remote work, you need the right tools to be successful, including high-speed internet and a reliable, powerful computer.
While some companies were unsure about remote work at the start of the pandemic, many businesses are now understanding the benefits. Remote workers love the convenience and flexibility it brings, making them more productive and happier.
The laptops from lenovo.com are a good choice, as they’re designed with professionals in mind.
4. Wearable Technology
We’re no longer limited to our phones or computers if we want to stay in contact with the office. Wearable technology might have first gotten attention when the Apple Watch launched, but more and more technology wearables are hitting the market.
Most wearables are designed with the aim of fitness tracking and health, but many also pair with your phone, allowing you to text, call, or even take photos, all via your watch.
While some employees may not love the idea of being in contact at any time, others love it, as it makes it easier to work from anywhere. Take calls and check emails at the gym, while you’re out for a walk, or from anywhere.
Also, many companies are placing a large emphasis on the health and wellbeing of their staff. Providing their staff with fitness trackers gives them the encouragement to stay fit and clock up their daily 10,000 steps.
If you have a team of remote workers and can afford it, you might want to provide them with wearable technology to help your team stay in touch.
5. Virtual Conference Tech
Another huge trend for 2021 is virtual conferences. Due to social distancing limitations, it’s not currently possible to gather in large groups for networking or conferencing as we used to.
However, business must go on, so companies have turned to a new way to connect—virtual conferences. Even the world’s biggest consumer technology conference, CES, was held virtually this year.
There are more and more platforms that allow us to connect virtually in large groups. You can organize conferences, meetings, and even trade shows, complete with exhibitor booths—all online.
These platforms use a mix of live streaming, audio, and video to replicate real-life conferences. While it’s not exactly the same, it’s an effective alternative.
It allows users to attend networking sessions, schedule private conversations, and even organize breakout rooms from larger groups. You can share new products and create documents and leaflets for conference attendees to take away too.
Even on a smaller scale, video communication platforms are quickly replacing in-person meetings. Software like Zoom, Skype, and GoToMeeting and making it easier for us to have meetings online.
This way, you can easily have live chats with your teammates, no matter where in the world they are. Most have free versions available as well, so it doesn’t need to cost a fortune to use video tech.
Drones are no longer limited to use photographers or the military. More and more companies are experimenting with drone technology, working out how drones can improve business.
Many shipping companies are working with drones to see how they can be used for product delivery. With drones, companies can deliver products faster and more accurately than through the postal system.
Amazon has done a lot of work in that area, thinking about how drones could also assist with order returns or missing products from orders.
Even food delivery companies are thinking about using drones for delivery. In theory, a drone lets you avoid traffic jams and deliver piping-hot food, straight to your door.
Of course, on a larger scale, drone technologies also make it much easier to capture places and products from a new angle, which has changed how we market products. This is especially true in the tourism market and in social media marketing.
Epic, soaring drone shots can be a powerful marketing tool and can help your latest advertisements go viral online, if done well.
Improve Your Company With the Latest Business Technologies
Business technologies are completely changing the way we work in 2021. Thanks to the technologies above, companies are able to keep up with changing times, without sacrificing productivity.
If your small business is living in the past, why not try out some of these new technologies? They can help you work more effectively and efficiently, which can only be a good thing for your business.
Although change can be tough sometimes, with some staff training and education, you can quickly update your processes.
Get started today and take your business to the next level!
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