Why upgrading your tech is good for business
At P1 Technology, we’ve heard every reason under the sun that a business can’t modernise their technology. We’ll do it next week, next year, when cash flow improves, when the latest global crisis is over, when we’ve moved offices, when the new GM starts.
You know you should do it, but it often seems like something that’s better put off and made tomorrow’s problem. Usually, it’s because the decision maker doesn’t have the headspace for changes, or cashflow is a genuine problem. But one huge reason we encounter is that because the last time changers were made, it all turned to you know what, and it’s hard to imagine why it will go any better this time.
But modernising your technology doesn’t have to cause headaches.
With good planning, good IT and small incremental changes, your business can gain all the benefit of modern technology without it causing hassle, creating a cashflow problem or going pear shaped!
These are my key tips to successfully modernising your technology.
#1 – Make a plan. Today.
We’ve all heard the saying that having no plan is planning to fail. And it will come as no surprise that this is as true for technology as anything else.
A clear plan will help you map out where you are, where you want to be and what the critical systems are in your business to get you from Point A to Point B.
Work with your IT people to ask and answer the right questions and then work through them incrementally. There’s no point in waiting until that critical piece of machinery stops working before you worry about it.
Make a plan today. Consider things like What happens if we need help with this machine or system? Do we have the current version, or close to it of this hardware or software? When will we need an upgrade?
All of these questions are surprisingly easy to answer – IF you don’t wait 5 years to answer them.
Old technology that’s running on critical infrastructure in your business has very real ramifications to your business when it stops working. The resulting outages and loss of productivity can cripple your business. Lost clients, lost revenue and stress for you and your team.
All this can be avoided and it doesn’t have to cost you big dollars – IF you have a plan.
#2 – Make changes incrementally
How can you take the first, small step to at least get things moving? Then what’s the next small step after that? And the next?
If you simply keep kicking the can down the road and thinking I’ll deal with that next year, the problem gets bigger, the costs get greater and the stress increases.
If you know want to go fully cloud based, but you can’t afford to do it all now, what can you do to help prepare? Can you do part of the project this quarter, another part the next and so on. This will make a huge difference to your cashflow, stress levels while reducing your risk and boosting your productivity.
#3 – Reconsider maintaining old systems
The older systems that you maintain in your business, whether they’re machinery, legacy software, legacy telecommunications, websites or applications, may be costing you more to keep going than it would be to change.
Don’t get caught in a false economy. While it might be a substantial investment to move to modern, when you look at it over 3 years and consider the productivity and efficiency savings, you might discover that you’re looking at your old system with fresh eyes (and that it doesn’t look quite as good as it seems).
#4 – Ditch the old computers
Sure. That old computer might do the job. Most of the time.
But how long does it take to do that job? How much lost productivity and stress are old computers causing your team?
Don’t let your staff be held up by slow computers. Usually, they are fairly cheap to either upgrade or replace all together. And when you think about what the person sitting in front of them is costing you this year, a couple of thousand dollars on a new computer is a small investment compared to the tens of thousands of dollars in labour costs you could save by making someone more productive on a modern machine.
#5 – Realise that old means insecure. And that means risk.
Older systems and software packages are generally less secure.
This means it’s costing you more time and money to make sure they’re secure by using stop-gap fixes, or you’re ignoring the risk and your business is vulnerable.
Hackers are targeting even the smallest businesses, and they are getting more advanced every day. If they find a weak spot in your technology and think they can get in, then they will try. And if they do, they can literally lock you out of every computer in your business, tie up all your data by encryption and then offer you the keys to your own files for a cool million. The police usually can’t help because cyber criminals are untraceable to local law enforcement.
I’d say I’m not trying to scare you. But I actually am. These types of security breaches are something that keeps me awake at night. Ignoring the threat could cost you your entire business.
But with proactive planning and upgrades to your systems, you can protect your business. And usually for very reasonable costs.
Please don’t let your old technology let you down. There is no good reason to not talk to your IT specialist today and make a plan to realise the benefits of modernising your business technology.
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