Technology has been one of the (if not the) great definers of the 21st century. In recent years, the tech industry has gone from an interesting concept with plenty of future potential to an area of the economy that is impacting business practices daily. Alongside all of the benefits, of course, many of us have become aware of unique technology pain points. Technology, like most things, has both its great and not-so-great features.
- On the one hand, a leveling of the playing field is happening through countless positive technological benefits. Tech is the great equalizer. It enables the Davids to compete with the Goliaths. It improves efficiencies, communication, and collaboration.
- On the other hand, adding so many layers of technology into everyday business activity opens up the doors for many negative repercussions. These technology pain points can interfere with the quality of results and, at times, undermine the very reason tech exists.
The good news is that technology pain points aren’t permanent. They’re simply problems waiting for a solution. Here are some ways to cut them out of your business’s tech life (and, at times, even your personal one).
1. Reduce redundancies.
One of the simplest pain points to address in everyday business activity is the issue of redundancy.
When you shop for groceries, you don’t purchase three different brands of whole wheat bread. No one goes to a car dealer and drives away with two nearly-identical car models with minor differences.
And yet, it’s easy to purchase similar apps or pieces of software in different ways and at different times. Eventually, these can build up and create more confusion than clarity.
You can fix this by establishing a clear tech stack for each area of your business. You can often find good suggestions for this by simply searching for them.
For instance, SaaS podcasting platform SquadCast recommends a specific list of software for audible content creators. Sales and CRM platform Hubspot has a similar list for a sales department. Whatever you’re using technology for, make sure you build and maintain a clean, mean tech stack to get the job done.
2. Get less complicated.
Tech stacks can help you avoid redundancy. But even then, you don’t necessarily want one version of every kind of software in a tech stack. Each situation is different, and you want to identify the specific tech tools that can make your life easier — and then ditch the rest.
For example, a freelancer might want to sign up for a platform like Upwork or Fiverr to get work. However, that doesn’t mean they should create accounts at every single freelancing site. The mere act of checking on all of their accounts would take up too much time. Instead, they should find the sites that are the most profitable and focus on those.
Similarly, a marketer working on social media for their brand shouldn’t create a profile on every platform. They don’t need Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, TikTok, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube accounts. Creating content across that many sites would be ineffective and overwhelming. Instead, they should find the platforms where their customers gather the most and focus on those.
Tech is a powerful tool for streamlining things. However, it’s easy to become inundated with different tech options. Cut out that pain point by only using the tools you absolutely need.
3. Value digital organization.
It’s easy to keep a desk organized. Whether you’re working from home or in a bullpen, you can address the visual and physical mess.
What about the digital one, though?
When you turn on your phone, can you find an app without trouble? Is your laptop or computer desktop cluttered with icons, shortcuts, and downloads? Do you have files stored all over the place without any rhyme or reason?
Cluttered digital storage can have a quiet-yet-significant impact on your ability to use your tech. It can waste time as you search for items across your devices. It can also add to stress levels as you work in a cluttered digital workspace.
Data and digital marketing brand 9Clouds suggests several ways to organize your digital spaces. Start with basics, like creating backups and deleting unnecessary items. From there, you can strategically set up calendars, utilize nested folders, and choose the right browser for your needs. Eventually, you can even try to reach inbox zero.
4. Ask for feedback.
Sometimes pain points are so subtle you aren’t aware of them.
For instance, you might have a customer service issue with a slow response time that is causing damage to the customer experience and, by extension, your brand reputation. However, it’s difficult to gauge the severity of a pain point like this if you don’t accept and organize feedback on tech-based products and services.
Find ways like emails or follow-up surveys to request feedback from those who use your tech tools — both external users (i.e., customers) as well as internal users (i.e., employees). Review the comments you receive and use them to identify and resolve pain points that you might not have been aware of.
Technology is a beautiful thing. But it isn’t foolproof. When businesses and individuals alike use tech, the benefits can turn into issues over time.
Stay ahead of the game by cutting out pain points from your tech life. Reduce redundancies. Avoid over-complications. Stay organized. Ask for feedback. If you can do that, you can ensure that technology always maintains a positive impact on your business (and your personal life, too).