If you live in or close to a major city like I do, you’ve surely seen them—former payphone stands, sad little guardians of nothing, with their phone guts ripped out. But New York has a plan for its payphones, partnering with a tech company (Google, Samsung, IBM and Cisco have already expressed interest) to turn the antiquated relics of a bygone era into Wi-Fi hotspots to truly bring the infrastructure of America’s largest metropolis into the next century.
The city’s contract with 10 companies who currently operate the phones expires in October, and the new phones will still provide actual telephone service and advertising, but they are required to offer Wi-Fi and 911/311 calls for free. This could also mean an end to the dreaded subway platform deadzone for smartphone and tablet users.
The potential upgrade got me thinking about how, like NYC, a business should always be on the lookout for its payphone—meaning technology, processes, or procedures that are outdated and should be made more efficient. As the president of a payroll company, I have seen some of these transitions first hand, as rooms full of physical files have been reduced to one filing cabinet. Now, we too offer clients the convenience of instant payroll, a platform that allows anytime access and control over their payroll submissions. As a small business owner and entrepreneur, there is always some aspect of a business that can be improved—large or small.
So ask yourself this: what’s my payphone?
- On July 29, 2014