Small businesses are in a unique position. They’re independent, flexible and locally attuned. When it comes to IT, small and large businesses have similar requirements but small companies often lack the resources (money, time, manpower) that large companies take for granted. As an IT solutions provider, we see it all the time: a small company with big-time needs but lacking big-time resources. Common problems we encounter often happen in these areas:
One of the biggest risks we see with IT for small businesses is security. More times than not, if a client says they have a security issue, the problem is really five times more severe than they realize. Malicious attacks are evolving everyday and it takes trained experts to know the mind of a hacker and how to stop breaches.
Implementing proper security measures takes specific expertise and diligence — skills that small businesses may not readily have available. This leaves them especially vulnerable to malicious spam campaigns and malware attacks. If you use mobile banking apps, you need to read this.
There’s also a constant security threat that many small businesses overlook: employees. Whether through opening unknown emails, clicking suspicious links or not updating their passwords, untrained employees can put your business at great risk.
- Do we have security protocols in place?
- Can we monitor our security for breaches?
- Are employees effectively trained on best security practices?
The efficiency of your business has a direct impact on the bottom line. One IT issue can cause a domino effect that halts an employee's entire day, or worse, brings the whole office to a stop. Imagine your computer not connecting with the printer or your email server malfunctioning — how would that affect your daily operations?
With most companies now working extensively in the digital space, the risks of IT can snowball out of control. Productivity problems are often connected to a bad IT environment, and the hours lost add up quickly.
- Are employees having to start their work over repeatedly due to missing or corrupted files?
- Are communications with clients or customers halted because of network issues or spotty WiFi?
- Am I wasting precious time trying to regain access to a locked site?
Similar to productivity, speed is crucial to success, and that’s where bad IT can hurt your business. The traditional 9-5 office job is evolving. Remote employees are common, flexible hours are popular and work/life balance is a focus for many businesses. But although the way we work is changing, we often see that the technology we use isn’t progressing with it.
If your business employs remote workers or offers flexible hours, find out if employees have problems accessing files or using business apps/tools outside of the office. It may be a company-wide issue that should be addressed.
Speed can also be impacted by forces outside of your control, like your IT company. If it's taking hours to hear back from them or days to get them onsite, you're losing precious time. In fact, the industry average response time is between 3-7 hours! If this sounds all-too-familiar to you, know that it can be better (our response time is 11 minutes).
- Can employees access their work remotely?
- Are our line of business apps supported?
- Is there someone to call quickly for IT help?
For small businesses especially, a stable IT environment is critical. Bad IT can put you in peril, especially if there's a natural disaster, and the recovery can be lengthy and expensive. But instability doesn't just come from forces of nature, any surprise tech issue can hurt your business. Whether you're operating with outdated machinery or trying to create a long-term technology plan, it's risky to go it alone.
- How old is our technology?
- Have we created a technology continuity plan?
- What would we do in the event of a disaster?
While small businesses may feel the risks of IT more than large companies, there are ways to mitigate and manage your tech. These IT solutions for small businesses can help you succeed.
Ineffective IT hurts your business. We can fix it for you. iVenture Solutions is an award-winning managed service provider delivering superior IT solutions to clients across Florida. As a leading-edge IT firm for small and medium-sized businesses, we provide a diverse range of services covering the entire scope of IT including maintenance, support, hosting and more. Through rapid response time, reduction of chaos and the right people, our expert team of IT professionals will fulfill your technology needs. At iVenture, we give you more time to do what matters most.