Like it or not, technology in business has become one of the driving factors behind so many companies.
It’s no longer a game of who you know, what you sell or your unique selling point. The top-performing companies are using technology to beat out the competition and see year on year growth even during uncertain times.
In this article, I am going to discuss my perspective of running an IT support business and what I see as working across our client base. There are three areas that we will cover as part of this topic.
By the end, you will have a clear understanding of exactly what technology can do for your company once you understand the frame of reference IT providers such as us have in the local marketplace.
IT & Technology Are An Investment, Not A Cost
Many see technology, IT and information associated with it as a cost. Someone has to support all those laptops and desktops your staff use. It costs just to maintain those machines, and there’s the additional cost of upgrades, replacements and repairs.
It is understandable to have this viewpoint when it comes to technology and your business. Yes, these are costs, but they will be providing the basics needs your business has to function. Just like the lights and heating in your office, IT is essential.
Where the investment lies is a long term strategy and view of how technology can help achieve efficiencies and transform fundamental elements of how your business operates.
A simple example of this I experienced last year when visiting a small coastal town. I visited a restaurant for a quick bite. They had a QR code on the door that I was told was required to order food. I reluctantly scanned the code and installed the app.
I found a table and began to order and pay for my food via the app. The first human interaction was when the food was served. I was stunned at the efficiency this small coastal restaurant had put in place.
With the power of a simple mobile app, they had reduced their operational cost by almost 1/3. There was no need for a cash register, no need for someone to take my order and no need for someone to collect payment.
All because of this one app.
Now the question I have for you and your business. What processes currently are you doing manually that could be automated with software & technology?
Secure Your Data, Protect Your Clients & Staff
Cyber security is a threat we all must live with now. Gone are the days of a simple virus that would stop your computer from working. Cyber crooks are actively holding many small and medium businesses to ransom and encrypting their data and asking for money.
You will only ever hear about large scale data breaches, but almost every business is under fire from these types of attacks now.
It’s no longer enough to secure the business. You now need to have a recovery plan of what to do when your IT system is hacked and a playbook on how to respond.
If your current IT provider has not put in place any process or playbook for your most critical business functions that rely on technology, now is the time to act. Engage with them to ask about Incident Response Plans and how they develop them for clients as part of their security focussed offerings.
With a practical response and recovery plan in place, this will give you a competitive advantage and ensure the smooth running of your IT systems even when they do get hacked, which is only a matter of time. The question is when you get hacked, not if you get hacked.
Finally, we come to the most powerful element to business technology, and that is having an awareness of the data that you are knowingly or unknowingly collecting that you can leverage to transform your business.
All the IT and technology systems that you run in your business collect data. A good example of this is the social media giant Facebook. It collects data on all user interactions to build up a vast dataset that can be used by its advertisers to target their ideal customers.
Facebook has taken steps to leverage this data in many ways, including machine learning algorithms that predict customers based on past actions. Now a good guess here is that you don’t have the same resources as some of these technology giants; however, they have provided tools for small and medium-sized businesses to make use of the data in their business intelligently to drive digital transformation in a solution like the Microsoft Azure Cloud.
It’s time for your business to act on these new ways of working and technology. We would love to explore the opportunities you have with all elements outlined above and look forward to speaking with you. For a no obligation consultation, book a call with us here.