We are living in the age of startups where business communication plays a pivotal role (no matter the size of the said business), especially for smaller businesses who are just starting out. Technology has not only changed the way we live our lives, but the way we perform our daily tasks. Startups, for example, are almost on an equal footing with medium-sized businesses due to how inexpensive and accessible business communication has become.
New advances in technology, especially in the case of software development, have changed the modern workplace forever. Yet, even though some people might still cling to nostalgic feelings of the ‘good old days’ of medieval business communication, here are a few examples of how and why technology has changed it for the better.
Rapid and remote communication
With the advent of the internet, information has become so easily accessible that it’s awfully hard to imagine how we managed to live without it. Gone are the days when sending a fax to someone was a legit way of establishing business communication.
Nowadays, you no longer have to wait in front of a fax machine for half a day, praying to God for the fax to actually get through to the other side. Instead, we use instant messengers such as Skype, for example, to stay in contact with our bosses and coworkers. Moreover, all of these communication software solutions are totally free, provided that you have an internet connection, making communication extremely easy for everyone. Renting an office space can be rather expensive, but thanks to the internet companies, you can now turn to employing a completely remote workforce and save a ton of money in the process.
As a result, web-based project management tools such as Basecamp and Redmine have become an essential component of any business communication. So much so, that some people can potentially get off of work early as they can finish the work they’ve started at home. Likewise, while on business trips, cloud software allows vital business data to be downloaded reliably and remotely from anywhere in the world without you needing to carry that data around with you. Imagine all the paperwork lost due to misplaced folders and briefcases; such concerns are now a thing of the past.
Speaking of paperwork, remember when companies had to create and maintain their own archives with the endless amount of documents they had on their hands which, in the end, was just rotting away inside storage boxes and cabinets? Yep, that too has become obsolete due to the cloud storage software mentioned above.
Moreover, cave-man methods of searching for relevant information in these physical libraries by hand, mind you, is a thing of the stone-age. Today, it’s enough to simply type in a few keywords in order to get the file you need, without even having to move away from your working desk. Consequently, typewriters are now associated more with hipsters than with businesses as Microsoft Word and similar programs have become mainstream.
In Australia, a lot of companies have stopped using their whiteboard conference rooms, because of the wide use of PowerPoint. This trend is most popular in Sydney, where a lot of Australia’s top startups are located. Due to the fact that it’s much cheaper than wasting money on equipping a conference room, startups are sending their employees to presentation skills training in Sydney to improve their delivery. Having a working projector and impeccable presentation skills is all you need for these visually appealing presentations that your colleagues can enjoy more than their naps during boring conference room meetings.
Improved customer relationship
Finally, technology has not only improved the way we interact with co-workers but with customers as well. Namely, clients can now contact businesses through their official websites or even social media accounts to voice their concerns directly. Such a fluid stream of feedback is essential for any business that wants to strengthen the relationship with their consumers. Walking in a dissatisfied manner and asking to see the manager will soon take its place in the history books.
The customer is always right, more so if they tweet about it.
This is why customer loyalty and retention campaigns are now immensely popular, especially the ones carried out on social media. Community managers have their hands full with keeping their brand’s image intact. Furthermore, these platforms are public, meaning that everyone can see and interact with them at any time.
Developers can keep tabs on the general consensus of their products and seek answers on how to improve them, ensuring that the end product is perfectly tailored to their target audience before launch. Again, apart from this customer-developer communication, the same platforms can be used between coworkers allowing everyone to be on the same page at all times.
To sum up, business communication has come a long way from medieval carrier pigeons and faxing machines to Skype and PowerPoint presentations. The flow of information is now rapid, more reliable and widely accessible to both employees and consumers that we have the technology to thank for.