Small Business IT Support – Solving the Root Cause of an IT Problem

Posted by Sean Kline on Mon, May 14, 2012 @ 05:01 PM

turbotek IT LifestyleThere is a common misconception among small business IT support professionals about solving IT problems. Many believe that they can fix any issue by identifying which hardware or software is out of date and then update it, or if they’re not virtualized, they just go to the cloud. The reality is that these quick fixes only address the symptoms of a problem, not the root cause. To truly solve an IT problem, it’s important to put proactive planning methods into action.

Quick fixes are like putting a bandage on when you desperately need surgery. They might work for a while, but eventually, you’re going to end up in the hospital. A “bandage” for small business IT support might cover up some of the symptoms, but IT issues persist beneath the surface.

Essentially, it’s a lifestyle problem.

If your lifestyle is such that you’re continuously gaining weight, no crash diet is going to be effective over the long term, unless you dig deeper to make a lifestyle change. In IT, finding the root cause of a problem means addressing the absence of proactive processes. More often than not, this calls for taking a close look at the fundamental structure of your small business IT support.

I believe that every business needs a process in place to provide proactive small business IT support. Without this, you’re only moving a problem from one area to another. For example, whether you buy a brand new PC or upgrade software, you get a shiny new thing that will likely improve your performance at first. However, over time performance will degrade, if you don’t optimize and manage the processes that help it function.

I recommend a set of best practices that cut across the entire infrastructure of your IT department to improve small business IT support. Companies that utilize a CIO to help them make informed decisions make certain that there’s a long-term proactive plan for your IT department. The good news is that you don’t have to hire an internal CIO to make this happen, as there are external resources you can use to fill this role. Next I encourage businesses to analyze their goals and prioritize them against their business needs. For example, If a set of best practices concerning power management would have no significant business impact, then they shouldn’t take priority over security best practices.

The idea behind ideal small business IT support is to marry the technical analysis of best practices and how they’re applied through your network administration with professional expertise – internal and external – to help guide you to a new IT lifestyle. Rather than fixing a symptom, changing your IT lifestyle allows you to solve the fundamental problems and drive down all of those reactive incidences IT problems tend to generate.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • The root cause of many IT problems is in the fundamental structure of the IT support.
  • Establishing a set of best practices and executing a proactive plan and will change your IT lifestyle for the better.
  • There are external firms that provide CIO services for companies that don’t have the internal resources necessary.


Topics: Small Business IT Resources, small business it support, IT best practices, IT Strategy