Don't Be Left Behind
Whether you are investing in software for your business or building software for your customers, it is crucial to think a few moves ahead. The term “future-proof” refers to actions you can take to ensure your technology evolves along with your business’s needs, customers’ demands, and industry trends. By future-proofing your technology, you can ensure it will not become obsolete in the near future.
Here are some tips on how to keep your business software current:
- Be Scalable: The solutions that suit your business now may not necessarily be desirable down the road. This is particularly true for start-ups that have not yet gone through rapid expansion. Anticipate growth and ensure any technology you choose to use or build can accommodate your needs both now and in the future.
- Stay Flexible: Ensure any technology you build or are using for your business can be changed or extended. If you are building custom software, ensure that you own the source code and remain in control of your software. Have your data regularly backed up, so that you are prepared to migrate another application if need be in the future.
- Expandable Hosting: Along the same lines as staying flexible, any hosting you have should also be able to adapt to changes in demand. Servers should not become overloaded as the number of users increases. By having safe, reliable hosting that is able to accommodate and expand with your growth, you are protecting your business from problems such as downtime or lags.
- Anticipate Changes In Your Customer’s Needs: Even if your technology meets your customers’ needs today, those needs may change over time. By ensuring that your technology is flexible, you can anticipate and better accommodate their evolving needs.. It is important to prevent customer loss to other companies that may be one step ahead of you. Paying attention to your customers’ demands can improve retention.
- Stay In Tune With The Market: No matter how old or new your business is, it is important to be immersed in your industry. Pay attention to what other entrepreneurs are doing, follow your competitors, and stay active on social media. Be present and attend events in order to keep your company up to speed on the latest technologies and trends.
- Create A Culture Of Innovation: Your fellow employees may be the best source of ideas and insights when it comes to any technology your business uses or supplies. Be sure to foster a work environment that encourages employees to innovate, experiment and share.
- Think Outside The Box: Your technology may be doing exactly what you intended it to do, but could it do more? While you may be accomplishing all of the goals you originally outlined, there could be other things technology could be doing for your business and/or customers.
Listening, connecting and experimenting are crucial actions to future-proofing your company. By always staying one step ahead, you can gain an edge on your competition, have more satisfied users and protect your business from future technological roadblocks.