When it comes to managing business IT, companies face a variety of daily headaches.
These issues vary in severity from mild annoyance to potentially business ending.
But the truth is, when you’re just trying to run an efficient business day to day, you could do without all of them.
Here is a list of the most common IT headaches small to medium sized businesses encounter:
You will be well aware that if you run a business that relies on IT, you will always be in the firing line of hackers, data thieves and fraudsters. Cyber attacks, data breaches, and malicious viruses are an all too common event that have the ability to bring a business to its’ knees, whether it is in the loss of sensitive client data and the efficient functioning of a key application or server.
The impact of a cybersecurity issue can result in significant financial losses, as well as damage to a company’s reputation. That is why is it crucial you have a system to stay ahead of the ever evolving IT security threats and have measures that protect the integrity of your business.
But unless you are extremely experienced and capable in managing IT, it is very difficult and troublesome to maintain the appropriate levels of security day-to-day. Which is why it is a headache and a worry.
2. Data Backup and Recovery
Aligned very closely with the headache of cybersecurity is the task of data backup and recovery. You rely on your data to operate efficiently and effectively day-to-day, so losing some or all of it will have a severe impact. Ensuring your data is properly backed up and easily recovered in case of an emergency or disaster is crucial.
Part and parcel of this task is taking regular, systematic backups of not just individual data files but the relational way they power your business. If you were to suffer a data loss event, the real goal is not so much recovering files but entire systems that allow you to continue operating as normal.
Ensuring those backups are taken reliably and with integrity, however, is hard. Unless you have someone who knows what they are doing checking the validity of your backups everyday, things can get missed. And you just know that when you do eventually need to restore, you can almost guarantee that things won’t be timely enough.
3. System Downtime
Headache number 3 is IT system or network downtime. This is more common than you think and can come in a number of ways. It could be that your network suffers from a memory issue and your connected applications and terminals crash – rendering your entire operation defunct. There could be an issue with your WIFI router, which in turn disables your internet connection, causing everything to go offline. It could even be as simple as a printer malfunction which means that vital document can’t be printed and everything else stops until it is fixed.
No matter the triviality or severity of what causes the downtime, it is critical that it is fixed fast. Any downtime at all can have a significant impact on productivity and revenue. And when you lack the knowledge to solve the problem, you really need someone readily available you can call.
4. Cloud and Mobile Computing
“But I thought Cloud Computing was a good thing, not a headache?”
Well yes and no. It is no doubt that cloud and mobile computing has revolutionised the way we do business. However, that in itself doesn’t come without challenges. Firstly, how, as a business, do you now manage the issue of potentially sensitive data swirling around on staff devices on the commute, at their home or even when they’re on holiday. The reality is, cloud computing has created new issues that need to be handled with care and consideration.
Secondly, there exists a serious headache in deciding which cloud software and applications to trust to enable your business best. There has been an explosion of choice on the market and with so many potential options, how do you know which will be a help and which will be a hinderance? Unless you have the experience to see through what exactly is needed, you could end up wasting a lot of time, effort and money.
If you are in a line of work that regularly handles sensitive customer, client or patient data, you will be well aware that you are required to comply with various regulations, such as HIPAA, PCI-DSS and GDPR.
Making sure you are ticking all the right boxes and implementing the appropriate actions can be complex and time-consuming. Not knowing where potential security holes exist or specific requirements on data accessibility and recovery makes compliance a real headache no business owner wants to deal with. That’s why it makes sense to outsource this crucial, but annoying task, to a service provider that knows exactly what is needed.
6. Updating Software and Hardware
It might not seem that important, but keeping software and hardware up to date is vital to the efficient functioning of a business.
Out of date software on any one of your employee devices can result in holes in security that can potentially let malicious viruses into your network. Not only that, it can cause relation issues with different devices talking to each other, disabling your ability to collaborate and share files between machines.
Old hardware can have a similar impact. Devices and applications tend to run much slower on out of date hardware and it might not even be able to support certain new software that is necessary for the security of the company.
If you are in charge of managing the IT in your firm, ensuring that all these devices are patched up to date can be a real challenge. Devices are spread out all of the place, with no centralised way to know if they are up to date or not. It is usually something that falls to the bottom of your do to list.
And when it comes to procuring new hardware, unless you are experienced or take a particular interest in such things, it is difficult to know what equipment is up to the job you need it for. That’s why you need the opinion of someone you trust and know knows what they are talking about to help you.
7. IT Staffing
Number 7 on our IT headache list is IT staffing. This concerns finding the right person or people in your organisation to take the lead on managing your company’s IT. Very often the responsibility falls on the business owner or office manager, but if it isn’t a passion of theirs or their sole job at the company, it is a burden they really could do without.
The truth is, a knowledge gap in IT can cause serious issues. Crucial tasks get missed. Sensitive data is left inadequately protected. Unforeseen issues invariably show up that cause panic and stress. Having the knowledge to know what to do in specific situations is an invaluable asset, but sadly many smaller firms lack this crucial resource.
The last IT headache on our list surrounds the issue of scalability. Businesses are constantly changing and growing, and your IT systems must be able to scale to meet these changing needs.
Knowing how to effectively scale your IT needs, picking the right software, hardware and operational infrastructure, plays a crucial role in your ability to expand the business and compete. Those who manage this difficult task best will be the ones who thrive long term.
At RapidIT, we know that when you’re running your business, the last thing you want to be dealing with is an IT headache. You’ve got a business to run, customers, clients and patients to keep happy. That’s why we provide a service dedicated to taking the burden of IT management away from you.
We are here to help cure all the headaches listed above so you can focus on the business or running your business, and leave the IT to us.
If you are a business looking for it services in Fort Lauderdale, get in touch with RapidIT now and take advantage of our free IT system audit.