I have been in business for 28 years now, and in that time technology has changed considerably. I’ve gone from meeting with clients in their office, to being able to talk with them virtually saving us both time. Instead of getting tons of paper mailed to me, I now can get the information that same day when clients upload the documents to my client portal. This also saves not only time but paper. I have found that some of my clients are very leery of technology though, the reasons vary from not wanting to learn something new, or they just like the way it was done before. I admit, I have had some false starts on implementing new technology, in the last six months we have tried to implement a new software platform that looked extremely promising but when we tested it with our clients, we found that it just didn’t work as advertised and ended up going back to the old system.
The thing is, I love shiny new tech, this often leads me to spend lots of time trying to find something to save time. As a matter of fact, we put in a new system this week that gives you access to us through text messaging and will help keep us in touch easier through email. Now when you send a text or email there will be a way to track if we have responded and be able to find those texts much easier. You will also be able to directly send a text message to the other members of my staff as well, so I don’t have to forward messages to them.
Starting to use a new technology, app or even procedure can be scary. Just remember you’re not alone, everyone around you is going to be uncertain about using it, you’re going to have to ask a lot of questions and do a lot of research to find the best technology for your customers and for your business and for your personal life. You need to make sure that you are familiar with new technologies that are coming out. That means following industry blogs and making sure that you don’t allow yourself or your business to get stuck down a rabbit hole. Ask questions, be proactive on what you need so you don’t get off on tangents.
Remember it may be what you’re looking for and you feel it is perfect but if your clients hate or can’t figure out how to work it then keep looking. Keep in mind that every time you look at new technology, the new shiny object may not be the best for your business, but the next shiny object may be exactly what you’re looking for. Remember that it’s not going to be 100% match to every little thing that you need. It might be perfect for sales but lacks in marketing. If it makes you 80% more efficient then it may be worth the time and the energy to adapt that new technology.
One thing that I failed to do with our last tech app was to take the time to test it. Make sure that it’s something that is going to work for you and take full advantage of any trial periods or training offered. Another big thing is to invite one or two of your clients to try it. Pick ones that you know we’ll be honest with you about how it works or doesn’t.
I have to admit I am the last one you want to ask about testing, why because I tend to jump in and send it to everybody then I find out it’s just not going to work. if you want a guinea pig to test on, I would be happy to help.