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Careful strategy and proper planning are crucial for the success of your business in the new year. And that planning needs to include your IT – have you started your plan yet? Use our checklist below to kick start the process.
The new year is here – do you have a plan in place for your technology?
You need to think carefully about what you’re going to do with your technology this year. What needs updating, what needs replacing, what new resources you’ll need to support your business as it grows in the new year.
Need a guide to help to get started?
Do You Need To Enhance Your Cybersecurity?
There are a number of reasons why IT security should be top of mind going into 2020:
With IT shifting from just another piece of equipment in the office to the core of operations and a key aspect of how you defend your business, you should designate it as a central part of your budget.
Should You Improve Your Wireless And Internet Connections?
A lot of hardware, software, and other equipment rely on your Internet connection, which is why you need to make sure it’s up-to-par for the best possible environment. Additionally, look into segmenting your wireless networks into trusted and untrusted zones and granting access appropriately. Any Internet of Things (IoT) devices should be on the untrusted wireless network away from company assets, which will help to limit their use as an attack vector.
Is Any Of Your Technology Nearing End Of Life?
Everything has an expiry date, including your technology.
Case in point: all support for Microsoft Windows 7 & Server 2008 will end on January 14, 2020. This means no more bug fixes, security updates, free support options, or online technical content updates. Over time, the usability of Windows 7 & Server 2008 will degrade. There will be a loss of usability and increased vulnerability.
No support means no updates, and no updates means no critical patches or fixes to protect you against cyber threats looking to exploit gaps in your security. There is no substitute for these patches. Without them, you have no choice but to upgrade to newer supported software.
Do You Have A Data Backup And Business Continuity Plan In Place?
Every business needs a data backup and business continuity plan that keeps data backed up in two places: an onsite appliance and the cloud. This ensures recoverability in the event of a disaster that takes down the network and/or destroys important information.
This type of backup strategy follows the Backup Rule of 3-2-1 and is quickly becoming the industry standard. If you do not have a Business Continuity Plan, this is the ideal time to create it and immediately test it. If you have a plan, then you should update and test it.
Do You Need To A Better Website Host Or Email Client Provider?
If your website is dated, underperforming or is slow and is crashing, your company’s reputation will take a hit. The same goes for your email – prospective and current customers expect a quick response in today’s hyper-competitive, highly responsive marketplace.
This is also a good time to unlink your email from your web hosting provider and move it to someone who can deal with today’s modern threats so that your email can become a trusted productivity tool again.
Could You Benefit From A Better Model Of IT Support?
When you look at your business, you see it as a whole ecosystem. Every part works together to make the whole company function at peak performance. That should include your IT. Wouldn’t you like to have technology worries and burdens off of your plate so you can give your best to your business?
That’s precisely what managed IT services offer (and why they should be a key part of your 2020 IT plan). Features and solutions in a robust managed IT services offering should include:
Can You Save Money On Your Phone Bill?
Traditional business telephone services can be quite costly and expensive to maintain, but VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) can significantly reduce the cost because it allows you to make and receive calls over the Internet while leveraging enterprise-grade features.
Do You Need To Consider New Technologies?
Let’s assume you’re relying on outdated and ineffective line of business software. As dependable as it may be (and let’s be honest, mileage varies) software like this has a core flaw – it only works for those who are fluent in it.
You may know about the cloud, and you may want to use it for your work. But doing so without the right expertise can make the migration a tedious process, and the ongoing management can come with downtime and security risks. That’s why many businesses find it difficult to keep up with the latest advances in technology.
The cloud has transformed operations, marketing, sales, accounting and other areas inside organizations. Companies are moving to the cloud at record speed. Traditional server deployments have essentially come to a screeching halt. The benefits of the cloud are being realized.
All of this goes to show why you need to make an effort to understand how technology can affect positive change in the work that you do, and to have a plan that reflects that understanding.
Our team can help – we have the experience and expertise to help you develop a Technology Plan for 2020 that will address any areas of your IT that may be lacking, as well as take advantage of opportunities for improvement.
Don’t “fly by the seat of your pants” when it comes to your technology in 2020. Put a plan together now to help you maximize cost effect and minimize negative outcomes this year.
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