As the transportation, construction, equipment dealership/rental, and field service industries continue to change at a breakneck pace, it is obvious now that this radical change will leave certain businesses behind.
Those being left behind are the companies that refuse to adapt to changes in the marketplace, and/or advancements in technology (they seem to go hand-in-hand these days); this mindset is a death toll for a business in any industry.
Today we’ll discuss recent advances in tech that apply to all of the above industries, as well as suggestions on how to go about implementing technological changes in your business operations.
Automate, Automate, Automate
You’ll only be hearing this word more and more as each day goes by, so you might as well get used to it now.
Automation isn’t going anywhere, and it’s essentially seen as the key to the future for nearly every conceivable industry.
However, automation will have an even larger impact on the industries mentioned above, due to their relatively slow adoption of new technology.
What this means is that automation will make or break businesses in these sectors.
This is due to the significant difference in efficiency between a business with automated processes compared to one that doesn’t have any automated processes at all.
Even simple, straightforward solutions such as customizable digital forms can have such an incredible impact on the efficiency of your business operations.
Moving To Mobile
Mobile technology has progressed by leaps and bounds within the past decade, however, there is still room for implementation in logistics-centric industries.
In terms of hardware, for example, tablets are starting to see extensive use in industries such as construction.
This is due to their significant advantages of portability and versatility compared to a standard laptop.
As tablets continue to evolve, you’ll start to see them entirely replace laptops both in the office and out in the field. This will happen much sooner than you think.
Another hardware example that’s starting to take multiple industries by storm is the GPS asset tracker.
These little guys are able to track a host of metrics, the most common one (besides location tracking) being asset utilization, which is measured using instances of movement and start/stop times.
However, GPS asset trackers are most powerful when paired with software that’s equipped with features such as geofencing, on-demand location pings, and automated alerts.
As business operations become more mobile, technology does too, which explains the prevalence of cloud-based services.
Cloud-based services commonly have both desktop and mobile applications, so they’re able to be used anywhere, on any device.
Since these cloud-based services require an internet connection at all time to function properly, GPS devices that are capable of acting as a WiFi hotspot have started to become popular additions to field vehicles/equipment.
Implementing Change On An Organizational Scale
Change, especially when it’s technological in nature, is scary. Change applied at an organizational level is even scarier. When you combine the two, things can get messy, fast.
This is why it’s important to start both small and slowly when altering the fundamental operations of core business practices.
First, identify a process in your organization that can be made more efficient with the use of technology.
We’ll use the example of digital forms from earlier to illustrate this point, since they’re easy to both implement and learn how to use.
Then, once you’ve found your desired service provider for the technology, you have to introduce it to the varying organizational levels within your business.
In this case, we suggest you start the rollout process from the bottom-up. Since digital forms will be filled out daily by employees in the field, it’s important for them to grasp the inner workings of the service as quickly as possible.
Start by stressing the benefits of switching to digital forms, such as saved time and instant access to forms on any device.
Any amount of change will be met with resistance, but it’s important to stay strong and focus on the positives during this transition phase.
To keep the transition as smooth as possible, it’s important to lighten the load on the bulk of your workforce – those deployed in the field – by having back office staff manage the process of converting old forms into digital formats.
Certain SaaS providers provide walkthroughs or even guided training sessions to help iron out any kinks in the transition to digital processes.
Just by following the steps listed above, you’ll find the whole process of implementing organization-wide changes much easier and much less scary.
While implementing changes of the technological nature is never a fast process, it’s important for you to understand the urgency of doing this sooner rather than later.
Businesses that are quicker to adopt technology and adapt to change will prosper, while those who don’t or are too slow with the uptake, will suffer.
The world is changing, and your business can either be left behind or lead the charge.