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Small and medium businesses believe they are poised to beat their larger competitors to the finish line of digital maturity. 79% believe that their company has an implementation advantage over larger businesses because they can optimise processes quickly. But what steps can SMBs take to ensure they are not left behind by the rapidly changing workplace?

  1. Integrate new technology

New workplace technology is emerging at all times. Research conducted by Coleman Parkes indicates that 78% of employees predict that by 2036 their workplace will be transformed by technology and processes that do not even exist today. Given that the majority of small business leaders see themselves as at an implementation advantage, this could be an opportunity to get a head start on their larger competitors.

  1. Regularly review processes

SMBs must work to ensure that their processes are transformed at a rate to keep up with new technology being adopted. Pre-existing workplace processes should be assessed to see how they might be improved by new technology. In cases where these are not compatible, entirely new processes are also likely to emerge, with technology at their core.

  1. Encourage interest among senior leadership

Major process changes in the workplace are not possible without good leadership to direct and oversee them. However, only 53% of small businesses claim to have a senior team member concerned with reaching digital maturity, compared to 66% of larger organisations. SMBs should therefore motivate their senior leadership to take an interest in reaching digital maturity, in order that they can lead effective changes in technology and processes throughout their organisation.

  1. Be aware of the financial benefits of digital maturity

To encourage enthusiasm for the pursuit of digital maturity, it is important to make senior leaders aware of the positive impact that it could have on profits. 73% of small businesses appreciate the potential financial benefit of reaching digital maturity, significantly less than their larger competitors at 81%. A general awareness of financial benefit of digital maturity should inspire small business leaders to enact the changes necessary to reach it.

  1. Seek external support

As well as internal support from senior leadership, SMBs must appreciate the help that external support can give to achieving digital maturity. More than half (53%) of small organisations are already working with third party providers to reach a state of digital maturity. Digital maturity must be maintained if SMBs are to reap ongoing benefits. Third party support could therefore be increasingly valuable for SMBs in an increasingly technological workplace.

Ricoh Workstyle is no longer active. You can keep up to date with the latest thinking from Ricoh UK on our new blog, Ricoh Insights.

Find out about SMBs position in the race to digital maturity. Download the full infographic below.

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