Some business decisions are easy, like when to go to lunch, for example. Others aren’t nearly as cut and dry, like where to go for lunch. If you think that one’s tough, consider the weight of some of the decisions you have to make concerning your business’ technology. Here, we’ll review a few ways to help simplify the decision-making process for you and your team.
Whenever you’re considering adding a new piece of technology to your business’ IT infrastructure, your first thoughts should turn to your overall cybersecurity. Is the technology you plan to implement sufficiently secure to do so without undermining the security of your other solutions?
Cyberattacks can very swiftly become costly endeavors, and it isn’t as though the data a smaller business has in its possession is any different than that of an enterprise company… there’s just comparatively less of it. This means that there really isn’t such a thing as a business that is too small to be targeted - it all comes down to a cybercriminal’s preference. Throughout its operations, your business will collect the kind of data that cybercriminals see to be extremely valuable, which means you need to make sure your business’ data is defended.
Considering your security deficits and acting to resolve them is a great starting point to organizing your business’ technology solutions.
Speaking of your data, you should also be paying attention to what your data is communicating to you. Leveraging enterprise resource planning solutions can give you insight into your business’ functionality, and where this functionality could stand to see some improvement. From there, you can make a better decision for your company based on what the data says is its biggest need.
However, you should also be careful when leaning on your data. Bringing too many variables into play can lead to false trends and other results that could actually hurt your business. In short, you want to be sure that you understand what data you have and how it applies to each other to better make determinations from it, streamlining your decision-making process and optimizing how you use the data you have.
Any new technology that you add to your workflows needs to be a good fit, in both compatibility with your business’ solutions and with your business’ resources. How well will your proposed solution integrate with your current solutions and workflows? If it doesn’t work well, adjusting your team to the use of the new system may be more trouble than it is worth. You should also consider how ready your planned solution is to scale to your needs. You wouldn’t want to suddenly find yourself with too many or too few resources at your disposal. Furthermore, you will also want to check in on the support that is available, should your new solution go on the fritz. Again, you want to make sure your investment into your solution is a good one.
Perhaps most pertinently, you also need to consider if your employees will be receptive to a new solution. A solution can only be valuable if it is leveraged enough to cover your investment into it, and then some. This means that, if your employees aren’t going to actually use a solution, it isn’t going to be worthwhile to implement it, hard stop.
Before you finalize any decision regarding your technology, you need to take a long look at what you are kicking around, and compare this action to your other alternatives. For instance, let’s say your IT infrastructure will need a new network switch soon. Should you replace it now, or should you wait until an upgraded option is anticipated to be made available?
What could either option cost? We mean all costs, too… the financial cost of replacing your network switch, of course, but the operational costs that this replacement could incur should also be considered. Would waiting until the improvement is available likely create further business deficiencies, or would investing in another model of what you already have put you behind when the new option is made available? Could any of these decisions have an impact on your business’ reputation?
Furthermore, you can’t ignore any regulations you may be responsible to uphold, either. If an older piece of hardware or software means you are no longer compliant to the requirements of your industry, your decision may suddenly be a lot more limited.
When it all comes down to it, the key to effectively making any decision regarding your IT is to accurately calculate the potential costs and compare them to the benefits to be gained. Granted, this isn’t always the easiest thing to do… especially when you still have the rest of your business to attend to, as well.
Marin Technologies can help by performing a comprehensive IT risk assessment. We’ll evaluate your network infrastructure and make our recommendations as to your best options. To learn more, or to schedule one today, give us a call at (208) 329-6792.