When I first entered the business world, everything was much simpler. The way an office functioned, the duties expected of employees and the way new methods were integrated had a lot of structure.
But modern software changed all that. If I look at how some businesses operate today, they are unrecognizable from 20 years ago. But most of that change is for the better. Here are a few ways that I have personally witnessed software changing businesses.
The biggest change I have witnessed in the way companies operate is in their interactions with customers.
In the past, businesses were relying on the wit and quick thinking of those who were on the front lines to please customers. It was up to the person picking up the phone at a customer service center, or the cashier on duty, to ensure a customer was satisfied.
Customer relationship management software changed all that. Companies can now effortlessly keep a record of every interaction they have with a customer. They can log a customer’s phone number, email address, purchase history and even the items they have in their cart on the company ecommerce store. And the result? A more efficient and personal customer service experience.
And that is without talking about the data collection and analysis possibilities that CRM opens up. The clothes company I currently work for uses CRM to successfully target customers with online suggestions, email promotions and discounts that will reignite their interest in the company.
Remote and Diverse Workforce
The days of companies relying on employees who live within a few miles of the head office are long gone. While most major companies have head offices around the nation or world, their workforce is very different from 20 years ago.
When I first started out in business, the idea of working for a company when I was a hundred miles away seemed absurd. Now it is common. I recently took a vacation to Hawaii with my family, but the company was dealing with an urgent issue with a client that required my attention.
All I needed to do was log into my company network account. It gave me full access to all my files, contacts, emails and other information I needed. I was successfully able to chat with some of the colleagues on my team. And within an hour, we had a strategy for the upcoming client meeting worked out. I was able to help the company remotely, with no fuss.
For me, it was a rare experience. But our company has many employees who work part-time and as freelancers. Being able to pull together talent from around the world not only makes companies more efficient, but it brings a diverse range of experiences, education and business knowledge to the table.
The business world has changed immeasurably in the past 20 years. Technology and software are a big reason for that change. One can only imagine how different the world of business will look 20 years from now when artificial intelligence and other advanced tech become commonplace.