The digital era is upon us, and we all know it’s changing the face of business. But the ways that 21st century technology can transform your business don’t end with savvy social media strategy or a five star website. Some of the most profound and cost-saving uses of technology are far less glitzy – but they can save your bottom line. Here are three ways to leverage digital technology in your business.
1. Virtual call centers. Many large companies have already outsourced their call center needs, but mid-size companies often don’t realize the plethora of options they have. Virtual call center servicescan include web and tech support, order entry, service team dispatch, and receptionist or help desk services. All of these can be managed by professional teams, using the information you’ve provided, off-premises and at low cost to you. Since you are sharing the call center with other clients, the cost to you is far less than running your own – and you don’t have to hire and manage employees, or lease their office space.
2. Virtual assistant. A VA is a professional assistant who you rarely or never see in person and do not bring physically onto your premises. VA’s can handle all sorts of administrative tasks, either on an ongoing basis or for a one off project. Need a thousand documents scanned and archived? Have weeks of client research you don’t want to handle personally? Different VA’s have different specialties and areas of expertise and can fill in for almost any administrative need that doesn’t require them to show up in person. Again, since you are only buying a portion of their time and share them with other clients, the cost is far less than actually hiring a temp or permanent employee.
3. Freelancers. While freelance contractors predate the digital era, they are more useful now than ever before – and easier to find and manage. With the accessibility of wireless technology, cloud data storage, online collaboration tools, and teleconferencing, more jobs can be outsourced to off-premise freelancers than ever before. The per-hour cost of a freelancer is higher than the salary of an equivalent employee, but you don’t pay them benefits and you have much more flexibility in being able to use them only part time or break off work with them as soon as you don’t need them. This is a huge for keeping your business flexible and competitive.
Whether you’re looking into virtual call center services or trying out video conferencing for the first time, there are many ways to use technology to save money. What other ideas do you have?
- License: Creative Commons image source
Eric Regan is a writer who loves to see what the world has to offer. He has written for blogs covering various topics