Following the advent of the Industry 4.0, companies are witnessing a more and more challenging, unanticipated global market with every passing year. As a C-level executive, you will need to update all emerging business trends and have a clearer vision of how your company navigates, evolves and adapts to such rapid operational changes.
That is why ASW Global has compiled four business development trends worth your consideration. These would be the perfect starting point for planning your business strategies from the global economic perspective and ensuring your company doesn’t fall behind in 2019.
The importance of sales enablement
The sales team play a decisive role in any business development strategy. That said, there has certainly been a lot of hardships in this area in the past couple of years. User behaviours are changing, our attention span is now shorter (e.g. the emergence of Generation Z as new key buyers), the competition is harsher and more than ever, sales team need support to help them sell more efficiently.
Consequently, companies and organisations start to implement sales enablement initiatives in their business plans, a trend which is likely to continue in the upcoming year. Sales enablement is the process to provide sales people with information, content, tools and ultimately leads so that they can engage better with the buyers. Sales enablement ranges from simple solutions (e.g. reviewing sales process, frequent training sessions etc.) to more high-tech, complicated approaches (e.g. CRM, sales scenario simulation etc.). If well devised and integrated, these practices could spearhead your sales roadmap towards greater business development in 2019.
Omni-channel approach & experience
Millennials and Generation Z are gaining a huge buying power in the market. They use various devices (e.g. laptop, mobile phone, TV) at any given moment to search for information and a seamless user experience will strongly affect their purchase decisions. This leads to companies developing an omni-channel business development plan to maintain consistent connection, product showcase and brand visibility from brick-and-mortar stores to TV commercials and social media.
To conquer the trend, companies first need to identify on which channels their target audience are most active. For example, general consumers would prefer to visit stores, surf social networks while B2B companies lean towards on-ground networking events and EDM. Then, the master business strategy will be cascaded with proper modifications for each channel. Normally, the transition requires close and smooth collaboration between historically separated departments like sales, marketing and IT from planning down to execution – which is yet another new adaptation for Board of Directors to consider and discuss in 2019.
Broader professional backgrounds and types of employment
A byproduct of the above-mentioned omni-channel approach, companies are rethinking their personnel plan and models of operation. HR directors start to propose a broader spectrum of talent in which multidisciplinary experts are highly sought after to support the team’s overall performance. For instance, the IT department is no longer the sole kingdom of computer specialists, but an increasing diversity of STEM talents like tech-savvy planners and business analysts (BAs). Their analytical, sales skills and consumer-centric mindset greatly complement IT staff’s technical knowledge in cross-department collaboration required in the omni-channel business development strategy.
In addition, remote working is gaining popularity as companies look at other cities / countries for suitable talents and a flexible, cost-effective operational model. Imagine how burdensome it would be for your wage bill as you need to hire extra staff and build a full specialist team in big cities like Sydney or Melbourne. Instead, more and more Australian corporations choose to recruit teams in neighbouring Asian countries where the skill levels are totally the same (or might be higher in fields like social marketing, digital advertising) and the cost is reasonable due to global wage arbitrage. Of course, the practice also poses certain hidden threats (e.g. team communication, work process etc.) that need to be addressed and resolved for positive impact on your business development.
The continued adaptability of Internet of things (IoT)
IoT solutions have been widely implemented among Australian businesses and with the Industry 4.0, this trend is set to accelerate and reach new heights in 2019. In fact, companies beyond the tech sphere also start to apply IoT at multiple points in the value chain for both internal and external purposes. Take a look around the industries and you can easily come across farming businesses who use IoT for weather forecast, monitoring crop health or sports entreprises applying cloud-based platforms to support athletes better.
IoT can deliver ROI, increase productivity and improve corporate profitability, yet it is a long-term process. Companies need thorough preparations of infrastructure, budget and personnel to integrate smart technologies into their current systems and make the practice work. Besides, it ranges from several months to a couple of years (depending on the complexity of the technologies) before IoT takes effects on optimising any business process. Therefore, 2019 should be your perfect start in Internet of things for further business development in upcoming years.
BONUS: Offshoring – a comprehensive solution for business development
Offshoring is by no means a new business development trend. The practice has been around for nearly twenty years. However, with business strategies like remote working, IoT, sales enablement take the stages, offshoring has indirectly been boosted and re-emerged as the perfect response for macro changes in the market. For example, recruiting an offshore team is actually a sales enablement solution as your onshore specialists will be freed up from paperwork and administrative tasks, focusing instead on customer acquisition concerns. You will also want to consider expanding the team to catch up with current trends, taking into account advantageous elements from offshoring practices like lower cost, better task allocation and better exploitation of new technologies.
As a service provider as well as an Australian pioneer in offshoring to ASEAN countries, ASW Global has gained valuable experience and lessons in the industry. We are glad to accompany your business in the face of such drastic market changes. Contact an offshoring company today, so we can consult and advise you through the whole process, ensuring a smooth transition and greater business development in 2019.