Top Five Things Small Businesses Need to Know About IT
The Greater Des Moines Partnership hosted Scott Meeker, of Greater Des Moines (DSM)-based BerganKDV, at a recent business-minded event, where he spoke about IT tips for small businesses.
Key IT Takeaways
Your Business Can’t Afford to Roll the Dice on Technology
Technology is crucial to the success of any business, underscoring the importance of having a thoughtful IT strategy. Because of this, small businesses must understand the answers to key technology questions before making sound business decisions.
That Does Not Mean Technology Has to be Complicated
Boiling the complexity of technology down to a few core building blocks is essential to forming a solid foundation for any business. Molding this strong foundation is important because interruptions will happen and change is inevitable! Yet, the ability to act proactively to forecast these changes and the ability to respond to interruptions quickly, with agility, is the difference between business-as-usual and facing a loss of time and money!
The Time is Now
Invest the time to talk through these key technology questions. Get answers. Understand the impact on your business and be prepared.
Top Five Things Small Businesses Need to Know About Information Technology
Embrace the Cloud
Gone are the days being skeptical and uncertain of the cloud. Although the cloud is not always right for every business, many of us have already made the jump and most are much closer than you think. If you have not explored the benefits that the cloud empowers your business, it is time to start.
Understand that you will never be completely safe from cyber security threats. Preparedness is all about mitigating risk to a reasonable amount of exposure. It is important to know that there is not one solution that offers bullet-proof protection, so focus on implementing multiple layers of preventative solutions. Most importantly, do not forget to provide your employees with consistent security awareness education. Simple reminders and training is a quick and easy way to keep security diligence top of mind.
Have a Responsive Plan for Backups and a Realistic Plan for Business Continuity
Start by understanding when and why you need backups. A hybrid approach provides a local copy of your data that is quickly available for responsive recovery. An additional copy of your data should be sent to the cloud or another off-site location. This is an absolute must to protect your business from data loss in the event of a true disaster. Have a realistic Disaster Recovery (DR) plan for business continuity. First, decide what data and critical applications are a priority. Then document your DR plan and processes. Remember that having systems online does not mean a whole lot if you are not prepared to address all the logistics that you will be facing.
Today’s businesses are working non-stop and its workforce expects anytime and anywhere access to the tools, company data and resources to get the job done. This can put a heavy stress on traditional networks as well as IT staff. Consider off-loading the heavy lifting to partners who can shoulder the responsibility and guarantee uptime for those critical services. This can include email, phone systems, video conferencing, ERP, payroll, document storage, line of business applications and more.
Bringing It All Together
Remember that there is no one size fits all solution that applies to every business. With that in mind, ask the right questions, find the right answers and implement the right technology solutions. Today’s IT service providers can help with these conversations and implement the right tools and solutions to monitor, maintain, and manage your technology systems efficiently and effectively.
Discover other IT & Data resources too help keep your small business up and running in The Partnership’s Small Business Resources Hub or sign up for the Small Business Resources newsletter and stay connected for information about upcoming events, other resources and the latest announcements in the small business community in DSM.