More industries that are changing thanks to connectivity
New levels of digital connection mean these industries may never be the same again.
In the digital age, almost everything is becoming faster and more convenient. From ordering a pizza to paying your phone bill, so many things can be automated or taken care of online.
Few industries remain unaffected by this century’s technology revolution.
Construction and trades
For many home owners, a simple YouTube video provides the instructions that can help turn a dodgy DIY job into a decent one.
However this doesn’t mean those in the building, plumbing and electrical industries are out of a job. It is easier for some trade based small business owners to find work thanks to the many websites that connect homeowners to tradespeople in a matter of minutes.
By registering for a site like hipages or Airtasker, a tradie can be alerted to upcoming jobs and could be on site with only a couple of hours’ notice. They could get the job done and then quickly deliver an invoice from their phone.
On some large building sites, smartphones, tablets and industry specific devices have revolutionised task management, consistency and communication. These tools can help make it much easier to keep track of huge amounts of data and take accurate measurements, sometimes down to a fraction of a millimetre. Ordering could be done online and staff could be managed via rostering software.
On site, connected drones could provide a bird’s eye view of a building site’s progress, while 3D imaging software and digital blueprint apps could help smooth out the project management process.
Art and graphic design
The rise of connectivity means a higher demand from consumers for content. With this comes the need for visual assets, including everything from business logos to beautiful animated sequences.
As a visual artist or graphic designer, it is possible to showcase your work through mediums like Facebook and Instagram, as well as specialty industry websites. When coupled with the rise of freelancing websites, this could open the door to a world of customers seeking creative assets for their business.
The digital realm is assisting visual arts to rapidly evolve, becoming more interactive and incorporating more intricate and detailed designs. Beginner apps and software like Canva and Photoshop also allow users the opportunity to test the waters and develop their own graphic design skills.
Cafes and restaurants
Booking apps and websites let you choose not just when and where you dine, but even the table you sit at. Technology also means that restaurants that provide a less than acceptable experience are held accountable thanks to the rise of review sites and platforms.
This can also work in an establishment’s favour when a happy customer checks in online or posts a shot of a delicious dish to all their followers.
The digital revolution has seen some cafes transform from meeting places to workplaces. By providing free internet connectivity to patrons, they are ingratiating themselves with independent and remote workers who don’t need to sit in an office to get things done.
One cafe embracing wireless internet for good is Brisbane's Cup From Above, which provides free wireless broadband via the nbn™ network to the homeless, allowing them to search for work, look for accommodation or stay in touch with family.
It also allows the volunteer based staff to connect to free wireless broadband so they can stay up to date using cloud-based platforms like Google Docs and Basecamp.
Like the art industry, music has changed dramatically in recent years. We have fast evolved from downloading our favourite songs and storing them on an mp3 player to accessing million-track libraries via music streaming services like Spotify and Pandora.
Through their recommendation algorithms, these platforms are taking users on endless journeys of discovery, exposing them to artists they may never previously have heard of.
For musicians themselves, global fame and fortune awaits! Artists like Justin Bieber and Lily Allen know this all too well, having gained followers on Myspace and YouTube before being offered professional record contracts.
While not all artists will be lucky enough to follow the trajectory of the better-known global superstars, there is still the potential for wider exposure and a far-reaching collaboration network, as discovered by the members of virtual band Two Sense.
Building your skills as a musician could be easier and more accessible thanks to digital audio workstations and software platforms like Garage Band. A home-based musician could record tracks in high quality before uploading them to the web and sharing them with the world.
Even learning an instrument could be easier now – by connecting with a virtual teacher or following online tutorials through an app or website.
The working landscape appears to be changing due to connectivity, with over 90% of jobs expected to require some degree of digital literacy over the next few years.
From leveraging social media to communicating with colleagues around the world, improved internet access is expected to continue to impact these industries and many others.