To ensure that your business is delivering services to customers as efficiently as possible, it's important to have a reliable IT infrastructure. A multinational survey conducted in 2018 by Konica Minolta has revealed that small- to medium-sized businesses are settling for IT that underdelivers. Moreover, at least a third of the respondents reported that technical issues can bring about higher costs, diminished productivity, and lower quality of work.
IT is a tool for operating efficiently and generating revenue. But is it causing more problems than solutions?
Here are some signs that your IT is falling behind:
1. You continue to experience extended downtimes
Your systems can glitch from time to time. However, if problems continually cause significant drops in productivity, it's an unmistakable sign that something is wrong with your system, and that your legacy infrastructure is most likely to blame.
Be prepared before anything bad happens to your infrastructure. Ensure that you have data and hardware backups, so you can easily recover once downtime hits. It’s also helpful to conduct network health assessments. These assessments review your network components such as servers, workstations, power systems, and other hardware, release a status report, and then recommend a solution for any issues found.
2.Your hardware and software are obsolete
When you purchase a new gadget or software program, it's natural to expect it to work as efficiently as possible. Upfront costs can be staggering, so it's also natural to stretch the value of your dollar for as long as you can.
You might think that you're saving money by keeping legacy systems as they are. However, old machines may consume more power and eventually require more maintenance, while outdated software can lose support and backwards-compatibility for it.
Outsourced virtual desktops and the cloud can be cost-effective solutions. Through these, not only you can be assured that your software is constantly up-to-date, but you can also avoid the additional costs of software licensing and new hardware, because an external team of IT experts will be in charge of them.
3. Employees are turning to shadow IT for work
Are your workers abandoning your infrastructure and turning to their mobile devices to work? Shadow IT might be on the rise in your company. This practice involves the use of devices such as external Wi-Fi hotspots, smartphones, and tablets that aren’t approved by your organisation. Even personalities such as Ivanka Trump and Hillary Clinton were once found using their personal email addresses, as government IT was found to be unsecure.
Due to its portability, it is becoming increasingly popular and harder to detect. While shadow IT may seem harmless, Gartner finds that by 2020, this setup will cause one-third of security breaches.
Letting employees use their devices for work can be a boon for your business, provided that you set up the necessary controls/security measures for it. You can utilize access management solutions such as Azure Information Protection and Microsoft Intune to augment existing systems.
4. You were recently a victim of a cyberattack
Let's say your system was infiltrated by hackers, and personal and financial information were stolen from you. Not only would this ruin your brand reputation, but this would also cost you a large sum of money that may threaten the closure of your enterprise.
Regularly check for viruses or malware that might have been implanted in your systems. Also, analyze all potential threats that can come across your organization, and make sure to update your disaster recovery plan at least twice a year to stay on top of the latest developments in cybersecurity.
If one or more of these signs are applicable to you, it's highly likely that your infrastructure is due for a well-deserved update. Remember that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and it's always ideal to have your systems updated regularly to ensure efficiency.
Partnering with managed services providers (MSPs) can go a long way as well, as they can monitor your IT 24/7, so you can focus on more important matters.
Here at Office Tek, we are dedicated to providing state-of-the-art IT support, service, and products to SMBs with the goal of minimizing downtime and ensuring that business owners can concentrate on more important matters. Give us a call today, and prevent costly issues while maximizing productivity.
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