Running a successful small business is a challenge, but applying best practices to your business technology can make it much easier. By making some adjustments to your processes and implementing more efficient business technology systems, you can make dramatic improvements to operational efficiency and transform your entire organization.
In this article, we take you through the organizational benefits of business IT best practices and highlight the five you need to implement now.
Why your organization needs to optimize its business technology
As a business leader, you may realize that your IT could work better, but you may not know just how much your IT problems are affecting your teams’ productivity levels. Even small issues can multiply into significant inefficiencies that cost you time and money. Research has revealed that a third of workers feel that IT reduces their productivity, and half of all businesses are losing revenue due to poorly performing applications.
Organizations of all sizes are investing in IT as a way to achieve digital transformation, and if they do it properly, their efforts can enhance their performance significantly. However, successful digital transformation is not about investing in every new technology; rather, it’s about leveraging the potential of the new technologies you choose to implement.
Optimizing your business technology requires new mindsets and behaviors — starting with the leaders of the organization. Following best practices is the quickest way to effect these changes.
Adopt these 5 best practices for immediate results
Once you’ve made the commitment to optimize your business technology, it can be daunting to figure out where to start. These best practices will put your business on the right track to making the most effective use of your business IT:
1. Adoption of cloud technology
When you migrate to the cloud, you are harnessing virtual tools instead of investing in physical hardware and other data management infrastructure, with its obsolescence and associated in-house support requirements. This helps you save significantly on overheads, and faster decision-making via cloud-based systems increases operational efficiency and productivity.
The operational agility afforded by cloud computing is one of its biggest benefits. Its scalable nature means you can accommodate project requirements that fluctuate depending on their stage in the business cycle. This lets you use more or fewer resources as you need, without the cost and complexity of buying and maintaining infrastructure on the premises.
2. Better team collaboration software
Effective team collaboration software makes your employees more productive and efficient. Your team should be working on a communication platform that is accessible from desktops and mobile devices, regardless of location. This allows all employees to keep in contact whenever they need to.
When your team has access to the proper online collaboration tools, it makes everything from communication to project management easier. Particularly in an age of remote working, employees can read and edit the same files and gain secure access to their business data, wherever they are located. Deadlines, task management, and support should all be incorporated in your chosen platform in a way that is easy to understand and use.
3. Choosing the right solutions to improve team effectiveness
Your team works better when it has the right tools and resources. Enhancements in project management software have reached new levels with cloud-based solutions, which make effective collaboration much easier. These platforms simplify and accelerate the decision-making process and offer easy-to-use tools that allow teams to work at optimum efficiency so that projects are completed well and on time. Harnessing the cloud, these solutions enable centralized storage of project material, facilitating fast access to real-time information.
4. Updating current software
The key reason why you need to keep your business software up to date is to avoid data breaches at your organization. Outdated software increases the risk that sensitive information could be leaked or stolen, leaving your organization vulnerable to financial losses and/or compliance violations.
Updating your software also ensures that your company is using the fastest, most feature-rich versions. An easy way to ensure that your software solutions are always the latest available is, again, to leverage the cloud. Using cloud-based software, your applications update automatically in the background.
5. Identify business process leaders within your organization
Optimizing your IT processes is only possible when the right people are managing them. Once you have established what the expectations are, you need to appoint the appropriate team lead to take ownership of the process. They will be in charge of monitoring the implementation of the process, identifying any deviations, evaluating alternative solutions for these deviations, and taking action to achieve the stated objectives. They will also be responsible for providing feedback to management to adjust expectations and manage the business process optimization cycle into the future.
Where to start
Adopting these five IT best practices will generate real improvements for your business in terms of enhanced efficiency and productivity. But you can’t expect your existing IT teams to manage the entire process. Here’s why:
- They may lack the time and resources to carry out a comprehensive IT operations overhaul.
- Skilled though they may be, they are unlikely to have the specialist expertise to manage the project to completion.
- Their specific focus is on IT operations; they likely lack perspective on business operations as a whole.
If you are serious about optimizing your business processes, the most effective way to do it is by harnessing the expertise of a specialist.
The Leverage IT difference
When you rely on Leverage IT, you have access to our technical team’s decades of combined experience in deploying and supporting computer networks for businesses. We deliver comprehensive IT support and cloud solutions to organizations who need their technology in the hands of dedicated professionals. You will receive deployment and support at substantially lower costs than traditional IT support providers, helping you make substantial savings on your IT department budget.
Book an IT Best Practices Consultation with Leverage IT’s expert solutions team, and get a customized roadmap that solves your technology issues for good.