<img height="1" width="1" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=225912425799455&amp;ev=PageView &amp;noscript=1">

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.

Read More

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

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?

Read More

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

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.

Read More

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

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? 

Read More

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

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.

Read More

Topics: true IT costs, IT best practices, 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.

Read More

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

Read More

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

It’s Not about IT Management but about Implementing Best Practices

Posted by Sean Kline on Fri, Aug 17, 2012 @ 11:21 AM

There are a number of IT services that offer to audit your business and identify your IT issues. You should be careful about jumping in to do an IT audit without understanding its purpose. The issues an audit identifies  – antivirus issues, spam issues, server issues, security risks – are symptoms of an IT infrastructure that is out of alignment. The natural reaction for any business owner will be to fix those issues. However, implementing an IT process that aligns IT to the business at the lowest overall cost solves not only the symptoms but the underlying cause: taking a reactive vs. proactive approach to IT management.

Read More

Topics: small business it support, Managed IT Services, IT best practices, IT infrastructure investment

Bringing Efficient IT to Small Business through Managed IT Services

Posted by Sean Kline on Thu, Aug 09, 2012 @ 03:14 PM

Technology in the 21st Century changes more rapidly than ever, and if small-business owners aren’t careful, they can end up spending all of their time putting out fires, updating equipment and worrying about security threats. Small businesses may find it difficult to support the cost of a full IT department to handle their IT management.

Read More

Topics: Managed IT Services, IT Management, IT best practices, IT infrastructure investment

IT Infrastructure Investment: Why Things Don’t Work Out of the Box

Posted by Sean Kline on Fri, Jul 27, 2012 @ 04:38 PM

“Assembly required” is always a nerve wracking statement when we are making a purchase. Exactly how much assembly are we talking about here? It is hard to tell whether there are two pieces or 200 pieces to assemble, until the package is home and fully unwrapped. Even in circumstances in which an item comes fully intact, it is rare when anything is fully functional straight out of the box. As much as we would like to believe that commodity items should simply work, they don’t. It is a difference in expectations, which can be frustrating to say the least. When considering ways to improve IT infrastructure, any "assembly required" can be costly.

Read More

Topics: small business IT infrastructure, IT Management, IT best practices, IT infrastructure investment

     All Posts