How to Become a Smarter Business in 2023

How to Become a Smarter Business in 2023
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Today’s business landscape is constantly changing. Businesses must adapt, innovate, and stay informed to thrive in a competitive market — much of which comes down to being smart. The adage of working smarter rather than harder may be well-worn, but it’s never been more pertinent. Becoming a smarter business is about adopting lean processes, embracing new and emerging technologies, and being adaptable in the face of change.

Want to become a smarter business in 2023? Here’s all you need to know.

What are the benefits of becoming a smarter business?

As a business owner, it’s important to always consider ways you can improve your business, even if it’s something seemingly minute like saving time on a repetitive task — every little helps, as they say. This continual improvement will keep your business at the forefront of your industry, with the ability to innovate, adapt, and capitalize on rapidly-emerging trends.

Some primary benefits of becoming a smarter business include:

  • A competitive advantage in a dynamic business landscape.
  • Improved decision-making based on objective insights.
  • Accurate predictions and anticipation of market trends.
  • Enhanced operational efficiency and resource optimization.
  • The ability to innovate and stay ahead of competitors.
  • Agility and adaptability to swiftly respond to market changes.
  • Sustainable growth and long-term success in a data-driven world.

6 smart business practices to follow

1. Embrace automation

Automation is essential for businesses aiming to become smarter and more efficient. By leveraging the power of technology, you can streamline processes, reduce manual tasks, and enhance overall productivity. In today’s increasingly AI-powered world, there’s an automation tool available for almost everything — whether it’s social media scheduling or automated billing.

Going forward, automation is only going to have an increasing impact on business practices, so it’s important to start embracing it now. Consider using comprehensive tools like GoCo to automate HR processes, freeing up time and resources for more strategic tasks.

Freeing up your employees’ time by automating mundane tasks will mean they can concentrate on more complex, engaging projects and spend their time more productively — bringing us back to the concept of working smarter, not harder.

2. Use data to make decisions

Utilizing data and insights is often the secret ingredient to smart decision-making in business. Data provides objective insights into customer behavior, market trends, and operational performance, helping businesses to make decisions based on solid facts rather than personal biases. Plus, if you’re looking to be more efficient, data can highlight bottlenecks, streamline processes, and optimize resource allocation.

Frequently, data can be overlooked, but using it to make significant connections and understand what’s truly going on in your business can reveal hidden opportunities and help differentiate your organization from its competitors, fueling innovation and growth. Deep-dive into your revenue metrics, demographics, customer feedback, and much more precious data besides.

3. Embrace remote work

The pandemic has shifted the paradigm of 'work' as we knew it. Businesses that have embraced remote work have reaped the benefits of reduced office costs, access to a wider talent pool not limited by geography, and often improved employee satisfaction. Investing in strong digital infrastructure and promoting a culture of trust and accountability can ensure productivity in a remote setup.

Software like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Slack, and Trello facilitate seamless remote work experiences, while employer of record providers such as Remote enable businesses to widen their available talent pools and expand their knowledge of overseas markets by hiring remotely in other countries. This can also be a more cost-effective and efficient way to recruit and onboard new talent.

4. Be open-minded to new innovations

There’s no stopping industry-specific developments or new technology from changing the way your business operates, so instead of completely ignoring or dismissing it, embrace it and be open-minded. Take AI, for example: ChatGPT has taken many industries by storm, while others remain fearful. The reality is, being acceptant of new innovations like OpenAI’s advanced language model can open up opportunities for innovation and development.

It’s important to be open to trial and error. Not all new technologies are going to be game-changers. Remember to ask your employees what new ideas they have, keep up with industry news, and don’t be afraid to introduce something new to your business if you feel it can have a positive impact on productivity — you don’t want to be left behind by your competitors.

5. Invest in continuous development

The pace of change in technology and industry trends has never been faster. For businesses to stay competitive, it's crucial to invest in continuous learning and upskilling programs for their employees. This not only helps in keeping up with the industry changes, but is also likely to boost employee morale and retention.

Platforms such as Coursera offer a plethora of online courses that cover various industries and experience levels. Customized in-house training sessions — embracing innovative teaching methods — can also be beneficial to keep employees up to speed with industry developments and maintain agility in a rapidly-evolving market.

6. Adopt sustainable practices

Environmental sustainability is no longer just about corporate social responsibility, but also makes good business sense. Consumers are increasingly conscious of the environmental impact of their consumption and prefer businesses that align with their values — in fact, as many as 92% of consumers are more likely to trust environmentally-conscious brands.

Additionally, sustainable practices can often reduce costs in the long run. This could range from reducing energy consumption, minimizing waste, and sourcing materials responsibly, to adopting a circular business model — which enables companies to get maximum value from products and materials.

Becoming a smarter business is not just an option; it's a necessity. Embracing technology and automation, adopting data-driven decision-making, and leveraging the power of data are crucial steps toward achieving success and sustainable growth.