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Preferred has been serving the Tinley Park area since 1991, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

What Opportunities Do Small Businesses Have in 2024 with Their IT?

What Opportunities Do Small Businesses Have in 2024 with Their IT?

Nowadays, finding a business that does not use technology in its everyday processes would be extremely challenging. That’s just how things are today. This technology also typically sees advances in capabilities and accessibility, particularly for the small and medium-sized business sectors. This year, 2024, seems poised to be no exception.

Let’s consider a few trends and opportunities you should consider as you continue developing your business throughout the rest of this year and beyond.

What Technologies Should Businesses Focus On This Year?

There’s no denying that the workplace has changed dramatically in recent years, from where many of us work to the tools we use. As such, different technologies are now more useful in helping businesses achieve their goals—the only question is how prepared businesses are to adopt these different technologies into their operations.

Let’s review a few technologies poised to make a big impact this year before we discuss a surefire way to optimize your business’ IT to take advantage of these opportunities.

Predictably, AI is Expected to Play an Increasing Role

With practical tools featuring artificial intelligence increasing in popularity and accessibility, it seems a no-brainer that businesses will see more use of this technology's advanced capabilities than ever. It also doesn’t hurt that AI is currently being applied to a wider range of uses. For instance, AI tools helped catch 98% of theft, fraud, and human error in retail establishments that implemented them.

In a more general sense, AI is anticipated to help businesses devote more time to their clients and their needs. By automating many manual and administrative tasks, AI can help free up schedules and ensure employees can focus on development and customer engagement. The same can be said of AI's enhancements to market research, cybersecurity, and other options.

How Do Businesses Plan to Incorporate AI This Year?

With so many small businesses seeking a way to make the most of what they have, it’s little wonder that many have plans to use AI in some way in 2024. For example, a survey that identified businesses yet to use AI also found that a sizable amount them had specific plans for how they were going to add it this year:

  • 24% to recruit new talent and manage HR processes
  • 32% to manage finances
  • 43% to augment customer service and support processes
  • 45% to generate improved insights from data analytics
  • 48% to optimize sales and marketing practices

Big Data is Another Hot Topic

Another survey—the Digital Leadership Report from Nash Squared—found that two-thirds of respondents saw big data and analytics as the source of competitive advantage. A quarter had already seen this kind of usage result in increased revenue.

Due to their size and the limitations it can place, small businesses can already face difficulties in their positioning. However, with accessible tools focused on data analytics, even small businesses can take advantage of the improved conclusions that more data helps to facilitate.

Hybrid Work Will Be Easier than Ever

Many businesses have realized the advantages of a hybrid workplace model. It provides the freedom and flexibility for team members to work at home or in the office, depending on their present responsibilities, which helps boost satisfaction, productivity, and efficiency. As such, it can be predicted that remote onboarding practices will become more prevalent and, by necessity, be improved upon using technology. Ineffective onboarding can ultimately cost a hiring company a lot, so communicating with new team members effectively will be critical.

However, with hybrid practices, employee monitoring software has also become significantly more in demand from businesses, with no signs of this changing during this year. Hybrid work practices are also poised to introduce other means of ensuring productivity, like flexibility in workflows or even active working hours. When all is said and done, it will come down to the business attempting to implement remote and hybrid practices to determine how to best keep people on track.

All in All, Businesses Have More Opportunities Than Ever Thanks to IT…

…and Preferred is here to help those businesses in Chicagoland milk those opportunities for everything they’re worth. Reach out to us at 708-781-7110 to learn how we can help equip you with the tools for success and provide the support that will keep you on track.

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Tuesday, June 25 2024

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