As the technological revolution continues, the life of any company or governmental institution is dependent on its ability to evolve with new technology. The willingness of the executives to redefine the business model and adjust to new market needs is one of the most important strengths. The biggest lesson today is that no company can afford to get comfortable in their mode of operation. While things run like a well-oiled machine, to begin with, it is almost law that you always keep an eye or two out for the new competition, especially on the technological front.
For any techie or tech entrepreneur, this is no new concept having seen the struggles of companies such as Kodak.
Moving on to Africa, the tech revolution is still hitting in full force and still catching multiple institutions off hand, particularly in the government. One such institution that caught my eye in the Business Daily is Posta. As of 25th July 2018, Posta is seeking tax exemptions in a bid to survive the massive loss of revenue and clientele over the past decade.
If you are Kenyan, you probably remember sending letters in the early 2000s. The fact that you probably cannot remember how to send a letter now is part of the problem.
So what exactly went wrong?
- Market Share
Posta joined the tech revolution too late when other companies had already occupied most of the market. If Posta had instituted themselves as the go-to delivery or shipping service at the start of the popularity rise for online shopping, their survival would not be a cause of concern in 2018. Market share monopoly is one of the biggest lessons learned from Uber and how they beat Sidecar to the market.
- Being the Last to the Tech Trend.
Posta has now instituted some tech proponents to replace its old services in a bid to catch up. However, in my opinion, email and other digital communication services have rendered mail irrelevant and in the next 10 years, no one will require the service in its entirety. However, in a market that is constantly seeking convenience, the ability to do instant point to point transfers of goods is a market that will only grow. People want to be able to order from the comfort of their home, track their deliveries at any time and have everything sent to their doorstep, simple!
3. Study your Customers’ Needs
Before they realized that emails had rendered snail mail almost irrelevant, Posta was stuck with over 50,000 empty private boxes which are currently up for sale/rent. Posta services like MPost which now allow you to use your phone number as your formal postal address are genius, and more of people want today. The same case applies to money transfer. The ever-evolving digital money payments starting from mobile money to Pesapal for interbank transfers have rendered systems such as money orders obsolete in Kenya, another big hit for Posta. Timely research would have given them a heads up on the on-demand culture growing among consumers today.
How to Ensure Survival in this New Market? The Guide for Governmental Institutions
Consult! Consult! Consult! Company executives should always have young tech gurus on their advisory board to keep them in the loop with new tech trends. The market today is moving or flowing towards the new biggest trend and insider knowledge is a must.
Talk to Clients Often. Any service based company is truly dependent only on its customer and their willingness to keep buying/paying for services. Therefore it is simple, talk to your clients. Online services such as MSurvey make this a very easy process today.
As a young tech enthusiast, mine will be to watch out for the newest African company or institution to be hit by the new disruptive tech wave!