Technology integration is a term that has been around for a while, initially referring to educational advancements, such as laptops and online course options for students. In the business world, technology integration follows a similar vein. While many digital integration developments were on the horizon, 2020 circumstances sped up the timeline. As a nation, we are learning to adapt to the new normal. When done correctly, tech integration can vastly improve the efficiency and bottom-line of a business.
Technology integration is meant to align with business goals and strategies, working towards successfully implementing it. To do so, systems and devices need to be able to share data in tandem in a safe, intuitive environment for the users.
In addition to the now-familiar concept of high-speed internet and software that has long been accepted in the business world, a new phase of integration has become necessary in order to share data safely, work collaboratively with people in-person and remotely, save time and money, and cut down on human error. With more devices being part of the Internet of Things (IoT), machines can also talk to each other without the need for human intervention.
One significant technological improvement will be the real-time assessment of data and trends. In the retail sector, every department is in sync regarding sales, inventory, vendors, and accounting. When a customer inquires about a product change, any employee will satisfy their request, leading to increased customer service.
In addition to improved communication systems, efficient workflows, and increased customer service, business leaders will also have better insights into data flow and bottlenecks, and potential growth areas. Marketing teams with access to trends and forecasts can optimize their campaigns for specific demographics, using appropriate social media tools for each.
The bottom line is that businesses looking for an edge will need to integrate technology beyond the previous incarnations of the internet, apps, and software. Employees across all departments will need access to data that can enable the company to work efficiently to realize short- and long-term goals. Transparency between leadership and departments is essential to examine trends, make predictions, and organize campaigns. Because decisions will be data-driven, they will be more precise, leading to enhanced growth.
Communications are also going to make or break businesses in the future. Staff will be able to freely communicate office-wide, regardless of their physical or remote work presence. This model can quickly expand to work on a global scale, linking multiple offices.