In a global market where information flows rapidly, it is strategically significant to manage technology that is able to transform products and services, operations and processes, companies and even competition. Technology is important for two reasons, first it is important to the success of every business activity, as a company is not able to deal with competition without use of technology. Secondly, it is technology-driven innovation that can lead an organization to a long-term growth. In terms of business activities, organizations can benefit from technology by differentiating their products and services, reducing their operating costs, taking advantage of new opportunities and supporting change processes. As for technology assisted innovation, it seems that those organizations that do invest in technology and become innovative increase their market shares, financial figures and overall competitiveness.
Having identified the importance of technology, managers should take actions of managing technology and adding value to their organizations. In this sense, contemporary organizations, and especially large corporations, invest huge capitals on the implementation of technology over the last decades, for example CRM and ERP systems. Information technology in most business areas facilitates the control of corporate activities, improves operations and helps in gaining the competitive advantage.
In industries, technology is a key component in order to meet market needs and customers’ expectations. In general, apart from achieving their goals, all the organizations need to focus on their customers’ needs. Leading companies in the market take initiatives by using technology to improve their operations, for example marketing and sales, as traditional approaches to these functions seem to be ineffective. As an example, the increasing power of the Internet (including social networking) has forced many companies to change their strategies with the aim of turning this power to their advantage.
CHALLENGES IN MANAGING TECHNOLOGY–
Implementing technology in a complex business environment is challenging and requires a number of management tools and processes in order to incorporate changes that will occur. Introducing a new technology should be combined with a strategic plan which involves a number of factors and challenges, first top management commitment to the technological plans is crucial. Secondly, the identification of appropriate technology and the selection of its source are two further challenged for organizations. Moreover, people within the company should be able to take advantage of new technology and become engaged with the aim of increasing value. Organizations should be organized and structured in a way that allows technological change and advancement. Last but not least, companies should be able to benefit from this change in order to become more competitive and achieve their short and long-term goals.
The most significant of the aspects mentioned above is that technology initiatives should align with the overall business strategies, organizations should use technology according to business imperatives instead of technical criteria. There are multiple challenges in selecting and applying the most appropriate technology that will improve operational performance and utilize resources, people and their knowledge more efficiently. There are several examples of organizations that either discovered that their technology did not supported their business strategies or selected complex technological solutions, instead of simple ones that could be more effective.
To conclude, it is necessary to take all the aspects of technology into account, so as to implement it in ways that will add value to the business. Managers who are responsible for technology should take initiatives and make the right choices, which reflect the organization’s strategy and can lead to business success.
Impact of Technology in Business Field-
Creation of flexible work environment–
Technology allows individuals to work from anywhere including at home, from the office, on the road, in restaurants and even abroad. Electronic mail, video conferencing and chat groups enables an employee or employer to be constantly privy with business operations developments, and receive and send daily deliverables, among others.
Besides, by using online advertising, businesses access a pool of international employees, which helps increase their competitiveness in the global world.
Examples of popular online stores in the UK are Amazon, Tesco and Argos. Consumers are increasingly using online platforms to find reviews of products such as electronics, clothing, and groceries before making any purchases. Many businesses and service providers appreciate the fact that many potential consumers could be obtained during this information gathering stage of the purchase process. As a result, manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers set up online stores which have lower operating costs compared to brick and mortar stores.
Instant Feedback from Customers–
Customer needs and preferences are constantly changing. Successful businesses must keep up with these market changes. Technology has allowed businesses to access instant feedback regarding the goods and services they offer. Online tools such as product reviews, survey programmes, for example, Google Forms, social media comments and instant messaging allow customers to provide their complaints, give compliments or any feedback to organisations with ease. Managers within a business, in turn, use this information to improve their operations.
Using barcodes, a manufacturer or a retailer can track the progress of the inventory. A similar technology to a barcode is the radio frequency identification that reads electronic chips attached to a product. Unlike a barcode, radio frequency identification technology uses radio waves and picks signal as long as the identification tag is within range and thus is useful in fleet tracking.
The future of technology in business is bright as new methods of operation and interaction continue to emerge. The impact of technology on business transactions and decisions will also continue to gradually increase creating a dependent relationship in regard to decision making choices and preferences. Technology creates a capacity and opportunity for a competitive advantage. The message is clear, organisations should acknowledge the role if innovation and technology in the business process as a strategy towards growth and competitive advantage.