Blockchain Technology’s Impact on Business

Nowadays, the fast-developing information have impacted people’s lives immensely. About three decades ago, the invention of the internet enabled information sharing process easy and transparent. Similarly, to the internet, Blockchain is an emerging idea that seems to be the newest revolution in peoples’ life. Blockchain is the backbone behind crypto-currencies such as Bitcoin, which is a decentralized electronic currency that can be sent from user to user on the bitcoin network without the need for intermediates. Blockchain works as the distributed ledger that can record Bitcoin transactions between two parties verifiably and permanently. As more and more companies tend to adopt this new savvy technology to promote their business and reputation, Blockchain is going to change the traditional way of doing business and impact the future business development.

To begin with, that fact that Blockchain can reduce transaction costs and transaction complexity helps companies to secure their capitals. Crypto-currencies are used in a decentralized system thus there will be no fees to associate them. By getting ride of the burdensome limitation of loans costs and transaction fees, individual business can accept capitals from investors and venture firms across the world in a short time. Another benefit of making transactions through Blockchain is that the whole transaction will not be accessed by a single third party such as PayPal. Each end user has the ability to control information on their own nodes. In addition, Blockchain automates daily business process and creates transparency. For example, Blockchain is able to track any procurement responsibility throughout its life-cycle, which ensures information accuracy and accountable transactions. An automation process like this will reshape the traditional relationship between suppliers and customers. Lastly, Blockchain creates a distributed and decentralized storage marketplace. With blockchain, each firm’s data is fully decentralized because it is stored on multiple nodes across the globe. A decentralized Cloud storage beats traditional storage methods as it maintains data on both public and private cloud.

Blockchain is definitely an evolving technology that is going to change today’s market, and the adoption of Blockchain technology is very likely to be the next strategy of many entrepreneurs.


AI: A Solution for Businesses Struggling to Digitize

In order to survive in today’s economy businesses have embraced technology to increase efficiency and improve their productivity. Specifically, businesses realized that to survive in a rapidly changing digital age business completely change and restructure themselves replacing their analog operators with websites and software. However, there is new innovation that could revolutionize businesses for years to come. Earlier this year at the I/O Conference Google CEO Sundar Pichai unveiled a new AI addition to Google Assistant. Called Duplex, this new fully autonomous AI is designed to imitate a real-world office assistant capable of automatically booking appointments via the phone. Using advanced networks, voice recognition technology, and speech engines Duplex can easily mimic human speech and conversation using a human sounding voice with the ability to say interjections like “Hmm or “Erm”. Duplex’s advanced capabilities was put to the test when Pichai asked Duplex to set up an appointment with a local hair salon during the conference. The AI flawlessly booked the appointment while totally duping the unwitting salon assistant through casual conversation.

Of course, Duplex is still limited, it can only complete specific tasks such as booking appointments or making dinner reservations. However, the introduction of this technology opens up new possibilities for small businesses. For those businesses that still use analog operators they do not need to buy a website with built-in appointment booking. Instead the customers can just use Duplex to appoint them. Additionally, businesses don’t need to train up new staff to book appointments since Duplex can do that for them. Duplex can also reduce no-show appointments since it can remind customers about their upcoming appointments that either allows rescheduling or cancellation. For businesses that are on holiday or on off hours Duplex can take calls during those hours which reduces the overall calls to the business and give more information to their customers.

Duplex is able to offer a nice middle ground between the usage of analog operators and the fully digitized. The introduction of Duplex represents a great advance in AI technology as well as new shift in business technology. The need to fully digitize a business is now a choice instead of a need for survival.



New Directive to Comply with AAP

An Affirmative Action program is a management tool designed to ensure equal employment opportunity. The programs are required as per regulations placed by the US Department of Labor. These regulations are described in Executive Order 11246, Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Vietnam War era Veterans Readjustment Act of 1974. However recent developments in the US Department of Labor have resulted in new regulations be emplaced. These regulations have been specifically targeted towards Federal Government Contractors and their rules in complying with AAPs. As of August 24, 2018, the Federal Contract Compliance Programs or OFCCP (part of the Department of Labor) issued a new directive. Called Directive 2018-07, the directive’s intent is to verify whether contractors are complying with their affirmative action program (AAP) requirements. The new directive will include:

  • Annual certification of compliance with AAP requirements by contractors.
  • Revising the neutral scheduling method to increase the likelihood of compliance reviews for contractors that failed to give certification.
  • Compliance checks to verify contractor compliance with AAP requirements.
  • Requesting the AAP from contractors that request extensions of time to give support data in response to a scheduling letter for a compliance review.
  • Eventually, the annual collection of AAPs from federal contractors.

The directive is a result of an US government study that estimated that up to 85% of government contractors do not support current AAPs. The reason for such a high rate of non-compliance is due to limitations in previous regulations which relies on the government contractor’s voluntary and unsupervised compliance. However, the contractor can be specifically targeted for a compliance audit. In addition, OFCP suspects that many contractors engage in “back-end compliance” by waiting to receive notice of an OFCP compliance audit and preparing their AAPs right after.

The new Directive is a new proactive shift in OFCP procedure and government involvement in company regulation. However, with this new shift comes the possibility of government overarching policies. Whatever the case maybe it is definitely a benefit for those who depend on AAP’s for equality and protection.