IT Strategy - Improving Efficiency in the New Year

Posted by Shadra Bruce on Wed, Feb 06, 2013 @ 07:57 AM

How do your employees communicate and collaborate? Is the level of functionality in your office working so that everyone's best talents are put to use, especially yours? Although most small business owners are initially successful because (by being clever and intrepid) they can 'do everything', it also means that owners tend to take on all the responsibilities, working tirelessly to increase profits by whatever means necessary. This usually results in long days, as you struggle to pull yourself ahead while your true talents for networking, leadership and sales get pushed aside. Needless to say, this isn't the most efficient way to use your time.

Encourage Individual Strengths

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Topics: IT Strategy, Security, small business it support, IT infrastructure, small business solutions

4 Tips to Improve Small Business IT Support Services

Posted by Sean Kline on Wed, Jan 30, 2013 @ 10:01 AM

In order for any small business to thrive, it needs to have an IT process that is capable of being both proactive and adaptable. Asset Management, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Proactive Process and a Security Process are some areas that can greatly reduce potential risks, lost productivity and improve return on capital investment. These are just a few examples of processes that need to be executed to generate results.

Asset Management

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Topics: Online Backup, Disaster Recovery, IT best practices, small business it support, IT infrastructure, IT Security, Asset Management

Small Business IT Support Services: Why You Need an IT Process

Posted by Sean Kline on Thu, Jan 17, 2013 @ 11:15 AM

As a small to medium business (SMB), your IT infrastructure plays a critical role in your overall strategy. The least expensive way to run technology is through process, but the problem is that it is difficult for the average small and medium business to develop an effective IT process, because of the extensive skills, tools and resources required.  It takes a village - one that can be amortized across a broad customer base to gain sufficient economies of scale to make it cost-effective.

There are a dozen different technology areas in which an organization needs expertise in order to effectively execute a technology process for a small business, so it is very difficult for an SMB to have a dedicated IT person with all of these skills. An IT process is not simply a static list of to-dos that, once-completed, is shelved. The firm you choose to help you develop and implement your IT process should understand that the process is a living, breathing, dynamic outline of your approach to IT, ensuring that your IT infrastructure is aligned with your business goals, that you are proactively addressing the challenges of your business using best practices, and that you have a clear idea about the true cost of IT. Your IT process has to be dynamic and changing because technology and your business are always changing.

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Topics: Small Business IT Resources, small business it support, small business IT infrastructure, true IT costs, IT infrastructure, small business solutions

Small Business Solutions: Your Role in Choosing Business Partners

Posted by Sean Kline on Thu, Dec 06, 2012 @ 11:59 AM

Most business owners realize they play a major role in choosing partners to provide the services they need, whether it’s for information technology, logistics, sales leads, marketing or accounting. Oftentimes, though, the selection process becomes hurried, is limited to just a few referrals, or is delegated to someone who has little insight into the challenges that lie ahead. The consequences can be disappointing, both in terms of quality and overhead cost. Because the partners you choose can significantly impact your bottom line, your role should be squarely focused on “getting it right” when seeking out potential partners.

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Topics: Small Business IT Resources, true IT costs, small business solutions

Small Business Solutions: Making the Pain End

Posted by Sean Kline on Fri, Nov 30, 2012 @ 08:36 AM

When you have a headache, you might just take some aspirin and be confident that it will go away. But what happens when you keep getting the same headache over and over? Do you keep taking an aspirin, or do you try to find out what is causing the headaches and solve the root cause of your problems?

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Topics: small business it support, IT infrastructure investment, small business solutions

Small Business Solutions: Who Should Choose Your IT Provider?

Posted by Sean Kline on Tue, Nov 20, 2012 @ 06:12 AM

As a small business owner, you face numerous challenges, not the least of which is choosing the right IT provider. Business owners often do not understand their true costs stemming from technology. The true costs of IT are not what the company pays to the service provider but far more related to productivity, risk, and ROI. Such an important business decision probably should not be delegated to another team member.

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Topics: Small Business IT Resources, small business IT infrastructure, small business solutions

Small Business IT Management: What Your IT Person Could Be Doing

Posted by Sean Kline on Tue, Oct 30, 2012 @ 09:03 AM

As the needs of your small business evolve, your employees within your company are often required to evolve as well – even if that means doing jobs within the company that they were not hired to do or trained to do – like performing IT functions. How would your small business benefit if your IT people were doing what they were trained to do instead of managing IT and putting out IT-related fires? 

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

Small Business IT: The First Step in Making IT Costs More Predictable

Posted by Sean Kline on Fri, Oct 19, 2012 @ 09:05 AM

Do you know your company’s true IT costs? I met some employees of a company who were concerned that their IT vendor took a formulaic approach to support that was not adequate enough to resolve all of their IT problems. This approach is at the core of an issue most companies face with IT management: If an IT vendor takes a formulaic "ingredients vs. results" orientation with IT management, that approach will be less able to adapt to unique situations that are bound to arise. IT vendors are more successful when they take an approach of managing to results, in which the formula changes based on what is required to meet the company’s needs.

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Topics: IT best practices, true IT costs, predicting IT costs, IT infrastructure

Small Business IT Solutions: The Fundamental Flaw of an SLA

Posted by Sean Kline on Tue, Sep 18, 2012 @ 07:49 AM

Leading IT managed service providers are proactive solutions providers who partner with your business to implement IT best practices as a function of meeting your business goals. What sets leading IT managed service providers apart is their ability to be more than ingredient providers. Ingredient providers offer a specific component to meet a particular need often in a reactive manner. They may focus on fixing problems as they arise, akin to functioning as a fire fighter armed with nothing more than a fire extinguisher. Leading IT managed service providers operate under the assumption that IT is a tool leveraged by the business to meet its goals. Rather than waiting for a fire, they install a sprinkler system overhead to minimize any potential issues in the form of IT best practices.

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Topics: IT Managed Services, Small Business IT Resources, small business it support, small business IT infrastructure

Exceed Customer Expectations with Small Business IT Infrastructure

Posted by Sean Kline on Fri, Sep 07, 2012 @ 06:20 PM

Whether your small business serves retail customers or other businesses, you are only successful in the eyes of your customers if you can meet their expectations of success - not your parameters. As a small business, it is critical, then, to understand what it is your customers expect as an outcome and then have a plan in place for ensuring you can deliver to their expectations. Because technology is one of the primary tools small businesses leverage in order to achieve the results their customers expect, having a comprehensive IT plan and proactive IT infrastructure is crucial to the success of your business.

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Topics: Small Business IT Resources, IT best practices, small business IT infrastructure, IT infrastructure investment

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