2022 is almost here, and business trends are shifting accordingly. We’re seeing rapid changes in the business industry, requiring any competent entrepreneur to keep up-to-date. These changes are both an extension of the changes we’ve seen for the past two years while still being significant enough to merit their uniqueness. Let’s take a look at a few.
Skill and Experience Over Diplomas and Degrees
Companies are looking for experience over just qualifications now. The path of most entry-level candidates is no longer “get a degree, get hired, get promoted, move up the ladder” but rather more of an “outfit yourself with a portfolio or work history that proves you can do the job” mentality. This is particularly true in tech fields where skill is the primary deciding factor, and even in non-tech fields such as Marketing and Sales, where experienced candidates have started to compete directly with fresh graduates for jobs. Fresh graduates know how to create content, use social media, sell products online, and close deals—all things seasoned veterans would not have been taught during their college days.
Customers Are More Aware Nowadays
Since 2020, there has been even heavier use of graphical user interfaces that emphasizes customer experience. This isn’t just a trend- a seamless customer experience both on the digital and physical side of things is gaining more and more prominence. Major businesses like Target, Amazon, and other major online websites utilize top-tier customer service tactics on both ends. Customers are beginning to be aware of the difference in service quality. This has resulted in an increased demand for higher quality service. Even smaller businesses are held up to the standard of major companies, something they can attain through customer service tools.
Personalized Experiences Topple Over Big Brands
In addition to customers having higher standards, they also want to experience a more personalized approach when being given any service. Top-billed companies may have the advantage of stronger marketing and a larger budget, but smaller businesses can invest (and succeed) in putting their customers first. This approach to business is seeing more customers expecting to experience better service from businesses across various industries. Poor delivery services are no longer excusable, especially because many consumers have already experienced high-quality delivery services from even smaller businesses. Invest in logistics, marketing, and customer service training to keep up.
Convenience as a Competitive Edge
In this era of quick solutions, availability, and convenience, it’s almost a crime to be otherwise. The pandemic has magnified everyone’s need for convenience due to lockdowns. Going online has made it possible for many businesses to provide customers with what they need, right to their doorstep. Of course, not all businesses can deliver right to people’s doors, but what matters here is your business’s ability to be present and reachable without hassle. The easier it is to do business with you, the more you can get ahead of your competition. If you’re planning to establish a vacation rental business, it’s important to be able to let your potential tenants book your property easily, either through listing apps or online listings. Putting your foodservice business on the most popular food delivery apps is another way of providing convenience to your customers.
The Rise and Continuous Development of AI
While convenience is focused more on the customers, here’s what businesses can ally with when it comes to additional customer service: Artificial Intelligence. Specifically, conversational AI can help businesses keep up with communications with customers without paying extra customer support specialists. This isn’t to say that you should entirely forgo hiring customer support and just rely on AI alone. It’s simply an affordable way even for smaller businesses to interact with and fulfill the customers’ less laborious needs. Such needs include taking short orders, booking, and asking frequently asked questions.
Hybrid Work Can Aid You in the Great Reshuffle
There is a very apparent change in the way people think about employment nowadays. The working class no longer wants to work for the sake of work; they also want fulfillment. Prioritizing a proper work-life balance, fair play, and just treatment are some of the heavy focal points in recruitment that you should note as a business. Flexibility is a crucial factor that job hunters heavily consider, and these people aren’t merely entry-level employees either. Because the pandemic has forced many employees to move back to their hometowns, these professionals are seasoned and are experts in their fields—and they are even willing to learn new skills to fit their own needs. As a business, put your employees’ best interest in mind and be more open to more flexible working systems.