Three ways to futureproof your business

Technology is already changing the way that businesses operate, and if owners want to still be in business in years to come, they need to act now.

In this article you will learn:

  • How to protect your business in a world with changing technology
  • How to give your customers what they really want
  • What futureproofing really looks like

Matt Bailey of UK Bullion has some tips for how businesses can futureproof themselves to harness hyperconnectivity and survive.

1. Prepare for disruption

Look at the problems in your industry and think about the ways that technology could solve them – or is already solving them.

“There is an approach to futureproofing called moonshot thinking, and it is kind of as pie-in-the-sky as it sounds,” Matt explains. “But that’s also kind of the point. When businesses engage in moonshot thinking, they get their smartest employees together regularly to discuss which changes in technology and customer activity might have a considerable impact on their business in the medium to long term. The managers then put systems and processes in place to deal with those changes as and when they happen.”

2. Think like your customers

What is that your customers want or expect of your business? What are the things that your business is doing that your customers don’t like? How can you find out?

First, ask your customers. But Matt also recommends being a customer yourself. “Buy your product or use your service as a customer would. Call in to the customer service team, and see how you are treated. By simply approaching the company as a customer would, you can discover your business’ strengths and, crucially, its weaknesses.”

3. Give customers a memorable experience

Customers will keep coming back to your business if there’s something that makes you stand out from the crowd. Of course that will look different in every industry but think outside the box and come up with something unique.

In real life, Matt says, this looks like Hilton Hotels’ HHonors app. “In the app, customers can book a hotel room and preview the room from their phone, which is a pretty standard offering. Then, they added a cool extra: customers can breeze past the check-in desk and use their phone’s NFC to unlock their room when they arrive. This means customers can go through one less step when they travel, a more than welcome change when they show up at the hotel worn out from travelling.”

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