Planning Your 2014 Technology Strategy
As 2013 is rapidly coming to a close, many of us are making resolutions and plans for 2014. As an business owner, are you making plans concerning the technology that keeps your business running? Let’s take a moment and think about some questions regarding your technology:
- If you lost of all your client data, how would that impact your business?
- If you had several computers not working, how would that impact your business?
- If you were able to find cost saving and efficiency solutions regard technology, how would that impact your business?
Now if the first two questions struck fear in your heart, as much as telling a child Santa is not coming this year and the last one made your eye glisten and twinkle you should definitely be thinking about your business’ 2014 Technology Plan.
Don’t worry it won’t be hard to plan and assess your options, we have outlined a few areas that may benefit your business and we have several others in our most recent newsletter (and you can always call our experts in when you are ready to get serious).
Technology and Equipment Upgrades: Making sure your technology is up to date is important for on-going productivity and efficiency, but there is an added sense of urgency with the demise of Microsoft’s Windows XP operating system on April 8, 2014. Provided that you leave any of your computers to run XP after the April 8th deadline, you will be placing your business at risk for cyber security attacks. Furthermore, choosing not to upgrade from XP will place your business at risk of being non-compliant with security and patch issues and depending on your industry these non-compliance fines could amount to big dollars! Many businesses are taking this forced opportunity to upgrade their operating systems and equipment.
The bottom-line: If you are still running Windows XP, you can no longer postpone your upgrade plans. Make and upgrade plan because April 8, 2014 is coming up quickly.
Mobile Accessibility: Mobile accessibility will mean different things to every business, but one common theme is increased efficiency and productivity! Mobile accessibility will give your employees the ability to conduct business and be reached anytime and anywhere. Mobile accessibility has some additional benefits, like being able to utilize apps for accounting, inventory management, and scheduling that will help you keep control of your business. Your clients will see benefits with streamlined communication and speedy turnaround time on requests and orders. You could even take this one step further and create a Mobile App for your business. A recent study suggests that 49% of mobile device owners are utilizing Mobile Apps to find business information. This could result in increased brand awareness and social media interaction, while providing useful information such as directions, coupons, events, and that’s only the tip of the iceberg
The bottom-line: If you aren’t fully utilizing mobility, you will be struggling to stay engaged and keep up with the competition in 2014.
Managing Your Technology Budget: It can be exhausting for any business owner to try and juggle technology costs, additions, and upgrades while striving to stay one step ahead of the competition and run a business. Staying up to date on the latest technology details and costs for cloud services, backup services, cyber security services is not something many business owners are capable of understand or what to understand! There is a solution to help your business stay ahead of technology and make sure that you current technology is always working: Managed Services Plans.
Managed Services Plans can help you as a business owner to work with one source (a technology advisor) for all of your technology needs. This technology advisor will create a customized plan for your business’ technology needs and budget! Some of the services a traditional Managed Services Plan offers are outsourced network management and monitoring of computer and servers, cyber security services, and back up and disaster recovery services. These services are typically contracted for a fixed monthly amount, so you can avoid costly one-time service bills.
The bottom-line: As a business owner, you want to run your business not manage technology problems. A managed services plan can help you make informed choices about complex technology solutions and deliver a higher quality at a lower cost to your business. This can be a “Win-Win” situation for your business.