The perfect storm of Covid and Brexit is continuing to shape the business landscape in a whole new way. Simultaneously, the green agenda is gathering momentum with some businesses showing incredible dedication and blazing a trail for others to follow as we all look to minimise our impact on the planet.
In the face of economic challenges, logistical difficulties and the ongoing pandemic-fuelled uncertainty, businesses are also looking at ways to improve their performance, whether that’s through automation, retention of talent through flexible working practices, improving working environments or perhaps through rethinking their own business models.
From purpose to performance, mental wellbeing to inclusivity, The Business Exchange Swindon and Wiltshire has asked for your insights on 8 Business Trends for 2022. We are sharing these as a series of eight articles between now and the beginning of the New Year. Here we take a look at trend number one.
The Rise of Automation
With huge strides made in AI and automation, many companies are now using technology to remove the mundane, repetitive elements of work.
There can be huge benefits in terms of accuracy and efficiency whilst allowing staff to focus on areas which require a more human touch such as creativity, imagination, high level strategy and emotional intelligence.
Jamie Martin, Managing Director and Founder of Correct Careers Coaching, has shared his thoughts on the subject with The Business Exchange.
“From a customer relationship and sales perspective, AI has been used to correspond with a large audience of prospects, for example email marketing, chatbots, lead generation AI, sales engagement software and social media integrations.
“However, when communicating with potential customers, it needs to be a personal approach (human touch) to understand their personality, emotions, buying behaviour and interests. This will create synergy during the customer buying journey and long-lasting relationships.
“A business will be more efficient and can focus time on other objectives if some processes are automated initially without losing the ‘human touch’. The first step would be to understand and research what automation would be of benefit in developing a customer base and, if possible, do a trial on the automation software to make sure it works effectively.
“Good practice is to use automation targeted to your ideal customer profile, such as an email marketing campaign that only contacts potential future customers. Bad practice is to invest in a resource, for example Sales Enablement, without having training on it and know how to use it effectively, as you might not see a return of investment from it! The common pitfalls are purchasing the automation resource and not using all its features, as well as not doing your research and understanding the full benefits of it.
“Post pandemic and from the enhancement of the digital world, procedures and processes have changed, for example recruitment and onboarding. Businesses need to apply automation resources to meet the demand of staff changes amid the ever-changing business landscape.”