It seems like just yesterday that we were using paper-based maps to navigate strange new placed and looked through the Yellow Pages to find a company’s phone number. Today, however, the situation is entirely different and many of our everyday tasks can be carried out on our smartphones. We as people expect to be able to do anything and everything online at the tap of a screen or click of a mouse, and this trend isn’t going to die down.
As a result, companies, and start-ups, especially in the e-commerce space, must implement new technologies to be successful and therefore having a technology plan at the center of any business, both new and old, is an absolute must.
What is a Technology Plan?
At the most basic level, technology plans are higher-level strategies which carefully outline where your company is at the moment and where you want to be in the future in regards to your technology and overall infrastructure. A comprehensive technology plan is an important aspect of running a business in today’s commercial environment and it’s not something to be overlooked.
Developing and understanding a technology plan can seem daunting, however, it’s pretty easy to get started. A technology plan can help you answer questions such as:
- Does my company need a mobile app or strategy?
- What software solutions do we need?
- How can we build our technology infrastructure in the long-term?
By having answers to these questions, you are immediately put on track to creating and achieving a sustainable technology plan which can aid long-term growth and development.
Questions to Ask Yourself When Creating a Technology Plan
Given that a shocking number of companies don’t have a suitable process for selecting and implementing new technologies, you can seriously get ahead of the competition by paying close attention to developing one. To aid you with this, consider asking yourself some of the following questions when you sit down and get to it:
The goals which you set for your company should be addressing specific problems or aspirations for your company. Of course, it is important that your long-term aspirations should be actionable and realistic… no amount of technology is going to help if you are a start-up company which wants to earn $50 million in its first year.
Think about what technology you are currently using and if there are any issues with these technologies and how they can be improved. Also, what are your company’s needs, and are there any organizational barriers which could be alleviated by the implementation of new technology? Always consider how your company will improve by addressing particular technological problems or by implementing new solutions, as this will help you make the most informed decision.
2. What are you currently using and what do you need?
It is important to critically evaluate the technology you are currently using. Do they work for you? If not, where can improvements be made? Consider what technology and resources your company is going to need for future growth.
When you have an answer to this, consider which technological solutions can help you and make a list with your highest priorities at the top. These are your “IT champions” which will help you reach your company’s goals and contribute to its long-term growth.
3. Do you currently have any plans in place?
The final part of your technology planning process is to look at any other plans or strategies you currently have in place. Also, it is important to begin gathering information at this stage which will help you develop a budget projection for all your tech-related costs.
By looking at your other business-related plans and strategies and looking at them alongside your technology plan, you will end up fully understanding exactly what your company needs to address both its short and long-term technological needs.
A comprehensive technology plan is an important yet frequently overlooked part of operating your business. Your long-term growth depends highly on the technology and software solutions your company is using. We are now very much into the information age and companies which embrace new technological trends will find it much easier to remain competitive and continuously grow.