It’s hard to think back about how business used to be. Only a few decades ago, there was no such thing as the Internet. In other words: no email, no smart phones, and no software downloads to enhance productivity.
In the 1990s, the telecommunications industry was comparatively humble. Instantaneous information exchange was not the lingua franca of technologists, and innovation didn’t include conversations on how to move huge amounts of information around the world in a perpetual cycle or how to structure big data.
Today, businesses routinely enjoy enhanced levels of communication, marketing, productivity, customer service, telecommuting, and teleconferencing that would have been impossible to imagine before the advent of the Internet.
Let’s take a quick look at four ways technology has made it easier for big businesses to manage their operations:
Building relationships between businesses and consumers can be enhanced with a software solution known as Customer Relationship Management (CRM). This application takes care of a number of things related to managing customer relationships, including sales, customer interactions, marketing products and providing excellent customer service.
Since this software makes it easier to develop a vision about what customers need, want, and desire, forward thinking companies use it to make decisions in real-time that cut costs and improve profitability. You might not be surprised to learn that there are a wide range of CRM apps, each designed to address a specific need. Consequently, in order to choose the best CRM for your company, you have to compare different permutations by manufacturers, a process that can be facilitated with a CRM comparison chart.
2. Managing Human Resources
Human Resource Management (HRM) is a software solution designed to make life easier for overwhelmed HR departments.
Among many other tasks, an efficient HR department has to:
- Quickly and easily access all employee information
- Keep up-to-date contact information
- Maintain accurate information on employee performance indicators and notice if there are any skill gaps
- Forecast employee development plans
- Keep track of employee benefits
- Comply with labor laws, rules and regulations
3. Managing Lead Generation
In the past, lead generation was a fairly laborious process. A marketer would work with lists, telephone numbers, physical addresses, publications, and other cumbersome techniques to launch a marketing campaign. Nowadays, the buying process often happens online and companies engage with prospects via their website and social media platforms. The old techniques of generating leads and then patching them off to the sales team is going the way of the Dodo bird.
Today, the gap between marketing and sales has shrunk considerably. Once a lead is generated, a prospect is persuaded to enter their contact information and go through a sales funnel to complete the purchase process. A lead generation process now consists of targeted advertising, progressive forms, copy-focused landing pages, scoring systems, and personalized lead generating processes.
4. Managing the Enterprise
A business is organized by information. A well-run business coordinates, automates, and facilitates information flow. When every department knows what every other department is doing, it can do its own job much better. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is software that facilitates this flow of information through a company. ERP houses internal information from manufacturing, financing, marketing, sales, human resources and more. ERP allows a corporation to create meaningful, realistic strategies to grow.
The software provides the following benefits:
- Standardizing processes within and between departments
- Structuring information so that it can be useful and easy to access
- Ensuring a smooth workflow between departments
- Making it easier for management to have a clear overview and to make decisions based on facts rather than hunches
While business has become international, enhanced automation, computerization, and communication have ushered in a new flow of information across borders. Globalization is a new force affecting economies. Besides impacting manufacturing and sales, it has also created an increasingly multicultural workforce.