The fourth industrial revolution (4IR) has many new technological advancements and innovation prospects. The new era presents an opportunity for further development in human-machine relationships, uncovering new market opportunities, and rapidly expanding global economic growth.
However, the use of technology in business has come a long way. Industrialists first used the term software in the late 1950s. But businesses popularized the personal use of software in the 1970s with the rise of companies like Apple and IBM.
Since then, software development has radically improved the productivity and efficiency of business processes. But, the full extent of software development in business is still on the horizon.
Here are five central ways that software can encourage business growth.
Improved Customer Service
Software development creates a medium of interaction between businesses and their customers. Companies can achieve this direct line of communication by using an IT help desk, a chatbot, or an email campaign.
This robust customer interaction approach allows businesses to collect feedback from user experience and use it to improve internal business systems and functionalities.
Most software offerings for businesses offer the central benefit of cost reduction. That said, highly effective information technology (IT) software like Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) can classify and identify business processes and whether or not the processes are aligned with business objectives.
The software can determine whether a business should invest more or less money into a process depending on its overall return or investment (ROI).
These functionalities allow businesses to focus on processes that generate growth, thus reducing negligent or miscellaneous operations costs.
Support Business Expansion
The COVID-19 pandemic drastically changed the way of doing business worldwide. As a result, many companies had to pivot their strategies and began offering essential services.
Modern software systems allow businesses to integrate and expand their services vertically. A restaurant, for example, can extend its meal preparation business into compiling and distributing recipes.
Increase In Competitive Advantage
Integration of business operations can position a company as an industry leader or expert in its sector. Integration is a process that provides more value to the customer. Value-added benefits are the main differentiator between once-off and returning customers.
Customers want to spend where they feel they are getting more than what they are paying for. Implementing a robust software system thus allows businesses to have a favorable position over their competition.
Increased Workforce Productivity
Software development enables employees to work more efficiently. The applications allow for direct and immediate communication and collaboration amongst workers, thus improving output.
Video applications such as Google Meet, Skype, and Zoom have pioneered a way that employees can stay in contact with clients without having to leave their homes. Such is the same with chat-based apps like Slack and Microsoft Teams, which allow colleagues to share work documents without printing them out.
Although the rise of software development has disrupted the traditional way of doing business, the new era of 4IR comes with more significant changes and opportunities for businesses.
The use of software applications in business will only increase and thus introduce more efficient and productive ways of conducting business.