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Digital Progress made by Business in 2020

22nd April, 2021

Investing in your technology is an incredibly powerful enabler for your business.

Following on from our previous article covering how IT has played a critical role during the pandemic, we wanted to explore the progress business has made in truly adopting digital technology.

When viewed against the rest of the World you would expect the UK to perform well for technology. The UK is one of the largest economic power houses and is already well advanced technologically compared to many other countries. However, according to the Harvard Business Review we have not fared so well.

But when you focus specifically on business behaviour, Covid has accelerated the digital transformation by seven years.

So, what do we actually mean by digital transformation?

For companies that deal directly with consumers, it means moving that relationship online. And that’s not just having an ecommerce site, that’s about communicating online to pick up complaints, feedback, product queries and so on. Offering more than one channel for communication encourages this – rather than forcing a customer to message on Facebook, giving the facility to “chat” via the website is strong.

One of the biggest shifts has been our economic behaviour. As we mentioned last time, we have significantly reduced our use of cash. The adoption of online banking and the use of banking/finance apps rather than just on desktop has also seen a big increase. The barriers to entry – largely distrust and security fears – have been broken down by the bigger pandemic fears.

That financial shift is not only relevant to consumers, it is just as true of business. The move to cloud based accountancy packages, such as Xero, has also increased.

On the whole business has chosen to make more investment in digital technology.

Some have seen it as an opportunity to cut costs, whilst others have chosen to embrace a fully cloud based business, to offer total flexibility and reduce risk.

In recently published research from Xero, they report that small businesses that have invested in apps to further enhance their productivity, and streamline processes, have reduced their decline significantly over those who have not done so. In pre-Covid times in Australia, the home of Xero, they reported businesses who invested in technology achieved more than 3.5% revenue growth over those with much smaller IT spend.

Statistics from a number of leading institutions including Deloitte point to a range of benefits for businesses that are committed to continuous investment in IT:

  • Improved business performance – real time access to the financials and a plethora of other crucial numbers – productivity, cost of delivery, process and procedure, and so on
  • Better product quality – technology has been a huge enabler allowing business to really drill down on increased performance and better production
  • Improved customer experience and customer service – speed and ease of response being the main contributions
  • Better team morale – engagement increased and certainly digital tools such as Microsoft Teams have been a life saver throughout the last year
  • Increased growth through improved sales and marketing – again real time reporting, digital tools enabling customer journeys to be mapped, drilling down on the lifetime value of clients, and key marketing spend

Investing in your technology is an incredibly powerful enabler for your business.

The last year may well have meant patching together the tools to enable your team to work remotely. But as we come out of the other side of the pandemic now is the perfect time to ask what do you want your business to look like going forward?

If you’re serious about recovery and growth, technology investment needs to stay high on your agenda.

We love working with business to ensure technology is supporting and enabling that growth. Give us a call on 01784 437 123.

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