As written on SmartCompany

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Having smart technology systems in the workplace is not just about having an internet connection that doesn’t drop out. “Shock, horror!” right? Many business owners don’t think of their IT system beyond its simple day-to-day function. When utilised more fulsomely however, technology has the ability to greatly increase productivity and output, promote creativity and improve staff wellbeing.

So how can IT work for you and how can you use it to your advantage?

Automation can make your team more productive

The best businesses use automation in a way that makes priorities clear for staff, and cuts down the time they spend on activities that don’t bring value to the organisation. In effect, automation can help staff to concentrate on doing what they do best.

The Internet of Things (IoT)—put simply, when computers talk to each other—is growing and developments in automation are becoming more and more integrated into our daily lives. Major tech companies seem to think it’s the next big thing—just check out Google Home’s features, which can switch on your sprinklers or send your partner an email to tell them you’re running late.

When applied to business, automation can play an important role in increasing productivity and putting you ahead of your competitors. For the jargon-seekers out there, people call it “automation as service” in a business context. For instance, Zapier’s technology can perform complex, multistep automations that increase efficiencies and remove menial admin tasks that kill time. You can use Zapier to automatically save email attachments to your Dropbox and then ping you on Slack, or it can send your team push notifications when you get an email from a VIP customer. Microsoft’s Flow is set to be a equally great tool with similar functionality once it comes out of its extended preview phase.

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