The last few years have brought extraordinary disruptions to businesses, forcing many to change their previously established business practices in an effort to meet shifting demands from employees, consumers, and markets. Often, this required businesses to let go of safe and predictable models and embrace the unknown. Despite these changes being uncomfortable at times, these businesses learned that the ability to quickly adapt, or agility, is both a state of mind and a key business competency.
Business agility is becoming a requirement to succeed in uncertain times.
Understanding Agile Businesses
In order to become an agile business, you need to understand what an agile business looks like. Here are the top three things that agile businesses do that set themselves apart from their competition:
Sees Change as Opportunity
The pandemic and the supply chain and labor shortage challenges that it created have been constant proof that unexpected crises can happen anywhere, anytime. Businesses that are uncomfortable with change or are unable or unwilling to shift their practices in response to changing circumstances will be left behind.
Agile businesses don’t stand still, they forge a new path forward, embracing strategic, adaptable, efficient, and collaborative ways of working. When change inevitably arises, agile organizations do not simply adjust; they look for, find, and pursue new opportunities.
Embraces & Adopts New Technology
Agile businesses understand that technology plays a role in their ability to innovate for an unknown future. That is why they are open to adopting new tech tools and encourage a culture that embraces technology.
According to a McKinsey survey, digital adoption took “a quantum leap at both the organizational and industry levels” due to the pandemic forcing businesses to quickly accommodate a remote workforce. This unexpected requirement accelerated many businesses’ digital transformation plans. One way companies did this was through implementing cloud-based business management solutions, such as cloud ERP software, in order to give their employees access to business-wide data from wherever, whenever needed via any browser-enabled device.
In addition to providing critical remote access, implementing cloud ERP solutions provided these businesses with real-time data visibility and increased collaboration, which produces informed decision making.
Adapts Work Environment to Retain Talent
The “Great Resignation” continues to affect companies’ ability to fill their increasingly open positions. Traditional-minded companies are competing with each other to recruit qualified people from a limited talent pool. In contrast, agile businesses are working hard to retain their existing talent.
Studies show that recruiting and training new employees costs more than it does to retain current employees. But retaining employees requires businesses to reevaluate their work environment. This means offering significant incentives, such as flexible workspaces, the option to work remotely, an engaging culture, a diverse workplace, and a healthy work-life balance.
Across all studies, workers ranked flexibility as a top priority, over money, status, or titles, in whether they stay in or take a position.
An agile business is willing—and able—to modify its work environment, thus allowing them to meet the demands of exacting job seekers who are pursuing fulfilling, difference-making careers.
Agile Businesses are the Businesses of the Future
It’s clear that the agile business is the business of the future. Changes, opportunities, and new technologies continue to disrupt the marketplace, and businesses that do not adapt to or pursue them will ultimately fail.
“Agility is a close cousin to resiliency and adaptability,” a recent Acumatica article notes. “While resiliency and adaptability speak to the resolve to not surrender to circumstances, agility is what makes resolve possible. Agile companies can adapt to changing circumstances quickly and easily.”
Being an agile business requires a willingness to lean into the unknown, letting go of practices that are predictable and safe. It also requires a perceptive mindset, an adaptable working style, and a willingness to embrace the right technology.
To learn how Acumatica supports agility with our modern, innovative, and award-winning cloud ERP solution, contact our experts today.