We are in the job of helping technology laggards become technology leaders. So when we see leaders suffering technology problems we find it painful.
Your business world is dependent on technology and each part of your technology is dependent on other components. Each component has a life cycle and will move from new and excellent to old and inefficient at a varying rate.
The key to your success is keeping abreast of the changes in technology and ensuring you are taking the right action at the right stage. Act too early and you risk over investing in an immature technology or selecting a product that does not take off and becomes a roadblock to progress before it reaches end of life.
In small businesses where people wear multiple hats, this can seem like an impossible task. This is where finding a proactive IT partner who is providing state of the art solutions to a range of businesses can provide you great value.
There is a balance that can be reached with a technology partner between them selling you solutions you don’t need to maintain revenue and them letting you know where there is benefit to be had that reduces your business risk or improves productivity.
Identifying a list of possible projects and then prioritising implementation is a better position to take than waiting for the technology to break. Next week I will be letting you know about the advantages of a leased IT fleet and how it can save you money in a clean sweep platform upgrade as an example of business case planning and being smart.
Keeping technology working past its use by date has many hidden costs. It may be that you have the newest of computers but your software is three versions old and is a security risk. Or your business may still be on an ADSL internet connection that is costing you over $1000 a week in lost productivity when a faster service would only cost you a few hundred dollars a month.
When technology fails it is obvious and has a cost to it. Investing in technology will cost you something but failing to invest may have higher costs. Failing to identify the need may already be costing you more than you know.
You may well have been a technology leader just a few years ago but if you stopped paying attention you may already be a laggard even if you have the newest device in your hand and on your desk.
Be smart and make sure you know where technology is headed for your industry and your scale of business before your competitors have the jump on you. With the right team it may only be a matter of weeks or a few months to get back out in front.
David Markus is the founder of Combo – the IT services company that is known for business IT that makes sense. How can we help?