Small businesses often operate on razor thin margins and are always looking for ways to be intelligent with their budgets. One of the first places owners and office admins will look to reduce costs is by reducing their technology spend. Which is surprising since it has been shown that when small businesses invest in their IT infrastructure, productivity and profitability increase significantly.
The old adage of “you get what you pay for” is painfully accurate when small businesses cut corners on hardware, cybersecurity, and management of their technology. The incurred and often unexpected costs of downtime, data breaches, failed audits, and general IT mismanagement will quickly take your IT spending from cheap to extremely expensive.
Technology Areas That Are Worth The Investment
IT Support & Management
For most organizations, a large percent of daily operations rely on technology. Software licensing, hardware warranties, file backups, printer management, new user deployments, technical growth planning, digital transformation, and daily break/fix support of your organization’s hardware and software is more than a full-time job . Small businesses need to invest in proper management of their systems as well as support for their end users.
Leaving all this to be handled the owner, general manager, or just a tech savvy employee could seem like a cost saving move. But by doing so you are taking time away from the manager’s actual responsibilities or hindering ownership from growing the business and serving clients.
That lost time is compounded even more when you consider the fact that those internal employees now responsible for everything that goes into IT support and management aren’t IT professionals. When you partner with a Managed Service Provider, you get an expert team monitoring your systems and faster resolution to technical issues. Giving you & your staff that time back to focus on improving the business.
Ensuring that your devices have the right specifications, operating system, and warranty can help keep your business running optimally. Saving a few hundred dollars on a new computer may seem like a good deal at the time, but having to invoke a mail-in warranty could cost you days without your machine. Is that downtime more costly than the money saved upfront? Probably.
We also often see downtime stemming from the purchasing of improper hardware that does not support business goals. There is a stark difference between business class and customer grade devices. While you save upfront, that cheap computer or server gets expensive over time as they are often less reliable, built with low quality parts, and have shorter overall lifespans. If you plan to purchase a new device to help run your organization, invest in one designed for business.
Small businesses traditionally invest the least amount of their technology budget into cybersecurity. This is typically due to one of two misconceptions. “My business isn’t a target. We don’t have anything of value” or the idea that cybersecurity is generally too expensive. Both concepts are far from true. Believing that your business is too small to be a target or that cybersecurity spending isn’t worth the investment can, and likely will, lead to a data breach or significant downtime.
Cybersecurity events won’t just cost your business downtime. Legal fees, increased insurance premiums, as well as lost reputation with customers are common results of a successful cyber attack. It is very difficult for a small business to retain clients that are directly impacted by a security event. Protecting customer data should be seen by business owners as equally as important as protecting their own. This is especially relevant in legal, professional services, and other industries that are heavily regulated.
Now is the time to evaluate how your business invests in technology. Instead of asking how can I reduce my tech spend, ask how can my tech spend improve my profits?
Quick and helpful technical support resources, a well-rounded cybersecurity plan, and regular assessment and maintenance of your technology can decrease cost, mitigate risk, and provide businesses the time to focus on their own success and growth. If you are looking for a dedicated IT team that can provide all these services, we encourage you to reach out to us today.