Posted by Anthony Toope
It feels like the blink of an eye but, believe it or not, 2016 is coming to a close.
The end of the year is always a great opportunity to pause and reflect on the year gone by and celebrate your achievements and milestones. But it’s also important to look ahead, set goals for the coming year and make plans to achieve them.
With online technology continuing its rapid evolution and the buying habits of modern consumers constantly changing, the pressure is on small businesses to be ahead of the game when it comes to new business trends and practices.
We’ve examined some of the emerging trends forecast for 2017 and offered suggestions for how your business can prepare for the year ahead.
When it comes to store size, less will be more in 2017. Many major brands have already signalled their intention to downsize floorspace in 2017 as more buyers shop online. Instead of expansive stores, expect places like Kmart, Target and Priceline to down size and offer more curated selections. If you’re still operating your business from a bricks-and-mortar shop-front, 2017 may be the year to think about a more tailored stock strategy, prioritise online sales and consider whether you need all that floor space.
As consumers’ buying habits change, retailers are responding by pioneering a new movement in in-store signage, ticketing and shelf displays that are eye-catching, informative and emotive.
Fuji Xerox Printers together with SignIQ have created a software package that allows retailers to create better ticket design with less effort, less wastage, greater efficiency and helpful reporting systems that deliver key marketing insights.
Millennials (roughly defined as people born between 1980 and the early 2000s) will continue to become the workforce’s prime movers in 2017, with more achieving executive and management positions.
The Productivity Commission reports that by 2060, our 75+ age demographic will double, and more than half of employers say that the ageing workforce will have a large or very large impact on their own organisations. The reality — whether we like it or not — is that millennials are going to be the employees filling the void. Estimates suggest that by 2025, they will account for 75% of the workforce.
Now is the time to prepare your business for the transition.
Fifty-nine percent of millennials report that access to state-of-the art technology was important to them when considering a job, but they habitually use workplace technology alongside their own anyway. Over half routinely make use of their own technology at work, and 78% said that access to the technology they like to use makes them more effective at work.
It’s important for Australian business to prepare for this shift in working preferences by finding out more about mobile and wireless printing.
In 2017 and beyond, enterprises will undergo a digital transformation "on a massive scale," according to research firm IDC, enabled by the so-called "Third Platform" of cloud, mobile, big data and analytics, and social technologies.
"We are at an inflection point as digital transformation efforts shift from 'project' or 'initiative' status to strategic business imperative," said Frank Gens, IDC senior vice president and chief analyst. "Every (growing) enterprise, regardless of age or industry, must become 'digital native' in the way its executives and employees think, what they produce, and how they operate.”
IDC believes the cloud will be a prime enabler of digital transformation, and it predicts that by 2020, 67 percent of enterprise IT infrastructure and software spending will be related to cloud-based technologies.
Need more convincing that 2017 is your year to move to the Cloud? Consider these statistics:
Cloud enabled printers and devices like the Fuji Xerox DocuPrint 315 Series can take your business to the next level in 2017.