Google Maps Can Now Help You Park And Other Small Business Tech News This Week

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(This post originally appeared on Forbes)

Here are five things in technology that happened this past week and how they affect your business. Did you miss them?

1 – A startup wants to get rid of unconscious bias in the office.

Joonko, an Atlanta-based startup, has launched new software that will help managers “ensure greater inclusion within their teams.” The AI-powered software is able to plug into companies’ current platforms like Salesforce and Workday and then “rifle through a given company’s existing data in order to suggest real-time corrective action that can reduce discrimination at work.” (Source: VentureBeat)

Why this is important for your business:

The software will look at religion, culture and gender and analyze tasks, wages and results to gauge and coach you how to improve your employees’ productivity and inclusion. It will even help with the hiring process. Big issues for business owners.

2 – Retailers will soon have a new way to deliver their products.

StorePower is a new app for grocery stores that helps you take orders for pickup or delivery, maps your store, automates multi-order picking and gives you other tools. Credit cards can also be set up ahead of time so shoppers can skip the checkout line. (Source: TechCrunch)
Why this is important for your business:

If you’re a retailer, you’re about to see a huge change in the way customers shop amidst competition from Amazon and other big brands that are investing heavily in technology to improve self-service checkout and deliveries that Millennials and urban dwellers are demanding. You’ll likely be investing in systems like StorePower soon. 

3 – Retailers are also getting more inventory help…from Intel.

The chip maker says it has a new application called “Responsive Retail Platform” that will be able to track store inventory and aid customers in real time. The platform “creates a common set of sensors, software kits, and other assets to push the retail experience notches up.” Intel says that it is planning to spend $100 million on the retail industry in the next five years. (Source: Tech Times)

Why this is important for your business:

What, you didn’t believe me when I said that big changes are coming to retail? Even Intel is jumping in with an enormous investment in store management technology to help merchants operate faster. Retailers, get your wallets out.

4 – Google Maps will soon help you park.

Google will soon have a new feature that uses “easy,” “medium” and “limited” descriptions to let users know the parking situation at their destination. While driving, a user can “expand the turn-by-turn directions to see a more detailed explanation” of the parking situation. (Source: Ars Technica)
Why this is important for your business:

Just another free service from the Lords of Google to help us save time and increase our productivity. Bless them all.

5 – TripAdvisor is adding enhanced listing options for hotels and restaurants.

New features will include allowing hotels and restaurants to highlight a “favorite review” and “best photos,” as well as better analytics “with extensive traveler, engagement and competitor data.” (Source: Marketing Land)

Why this is important for your business:

My family risked our lives on a crocodile swamp boat tour in Australia last year and my wife loved it so much, she left a great TripAdvisor review. The owner of the little tour business (Bruce – he offered free meat pies, too!) said that, without TripAdvisor, he would have no business. I’m sure he’ll love these new features. For the record, my wife’s review got more than 600 likes, so he wasn’t kidding!

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