Today, businesses rely on technology more than ever. Information technology is essential to achieving business success. However, when technology is not utilized properly, it can actually slow your business growth. Make technology work for you by understanding common tech-related issues that might be hampering your business growth right now:
Technology advancements have opened the door to collecting and publishing more information than ever before. At the same time, the sheer volume of available information often interrupts business activities. Too much information can result in over-planning, paralyzing indecision and loss of focus that can destroy your business.
There has been much talk about information overload in the recent years. Along with excess information comes the issue of having too many choices. In addition, the information that businesses collect is often low-quality and unnecessary. To deal with the issue, organizations should change their culture and employ available solutions to manage the volume of unwanted, questionable or low-quality information.
Big Data Cluelessness
The world is now able to collect and store data from an unprecedented number of sources at a remarkable rate. Also, new types of data have become available including those derived from sensors and the IoT. Big Data aims to analyze available information and present it in ways that add value to businesses.
Many companies have access to relevant data, but they don’t know how to interpret and apply it to real-world activities. They also fail to focus on the quality and the context of the data collected. You can make Big Data work for you by using technology to select and analyze the data streams that have the most relevance to your firm.
Security and Backup Issues
IT security concerns continue to hamper business growth in practically every industry. Despite the development of advanced security tools, the greatest threats still come from employee carelessness including weak passwords and poor habits. Additionally, natural disasters, theft, malware and hacking attacks can cause data loss.
Many companies struggle to find the right balance between security and productivity, and abandon security strategies believing that security slows down their growth. You can deal with security and backup issues by finding a balance between optimal security practices and your need for growth.
Create and publish effective IT policies and schedule regular security training for everyone on your team.
Cost cutting and growth can cause businesses to fail to properly maintain their equipment. Also, some companies ignore maintenance issues because they don’t have any in-house IT experts. Regardless, the policy of only dealing with equipment when it fails paralyzes businesses, often at critical moments.
A routine maintenance program relies on manufacturer recommendations and established best practices to keep equipment running well. Preventative maintenance proactively addresses potential problems, such as incorrect wiring, before they cause downtime.
When you consider the devastating cost of unpredictable equipment failure, you will understand why successful businesses spend money on regular maintenance.
Insufficient Training and Lack of Technical Support
Despite a substantial IT investment, some companies experience negative productivity gains because workers don’t know how to use the features of business software and equipment. Such issues arise because some business owners and managers fail to understand the connection between employee training and productivity.
Business teams often want technology to automatically improve profitability without understanding the need for employee training and support. Meanwhile IT groups can have trouble implementing appropriate technology because they don’t understand the intricacies of the business.
Address training and support issues by improving communication between your internal units, and providing adequate IT training and support for all your workers.
Upgrades and Integration
Companies hurt themselves when they ignore the natural obsolescence of their IT assets. The desire to maintain business growth while keeping IT expenditures on a predictable cycle often addresses accounting concerns, but it can handicap workers. For example, failure to upgrade your software and equipment so it can interact with client systems might require redundant data entry and equipment.
Avoid choking business growth by planning your upgrades based on strategic integration rather than on budgetary cycles. Investing wisely in IT upgrades and integration can streamline your operation and provide you with substantial returns.
Emerging of Disruptive Technologies
Disruptive technologies tend to unexpectedly change the way people live and work and render entire companies obsolete. Some companies, become so fixed in their ways that they don’t even consider the possibility of disruptive technology merging, so they are completely unable to adapt when radical market changes occur. Other companies prematurely adopt potential emerging technology and find themselves unable to backtrack if consumers reject it.
Have your company stay in touch with technical developments that might affect the way customers live and work. The key here is to find the balance between focusing on the present and looking into the future.
Velocity and The Amount of Change
Technology changes faster than most people can realize. In addition to disruptive technologies, the already-existing and well-known technologies are constantly changing and improving.
Companies fail to grow when they don’t have the agility needed to quickly adapt to change. Technological change can either work for or against your business growth. The cost of adopting new technology can stretch your budget, so you must learn to exercise discretion. You don’t want to blow a good opportunity, but you also don’t want to waste your money on useless upgrades.
Deal with the velocity and amount of change by staying attuned to the needs of your customers and understanding exactly what you wish to accomplish with new technologies.
Asking for Perfect Solutions
Businesses that look at technology as a source for perfect solutions are making a critical mistake. All technology has limitations and nothing guarantees success.
Companies will always depend on technology to compete in the modern marketplace. Still, no technology will perfectly suit a particular business model. Business owners and managers who demand perfection encourage internal conflict that can stifle growth.
Overcome perfectionism in your company by creating and communicating realistic expectations. Good communication between every employee, team and department in your business will help everyone understand the role of technology and create an atmosphere of constant and continuous improvement.
Cost and Business Growth
Companies want to control costs, so they may at times ignore their need for new technology. However, ill-equipped teams cannot efficiently produce goods and services or support their customers. Ultimately, cost-conscious companies that skimp on technology end up losing customers and fail. Don’t let that happen to your business.
The cost of technology affects all businesses, particularly small and mid-sized companies. Their limited budget means that they have a hard time competing against enterprises and large organizations. Still, every business needs to plan to spend money on technology. Make technology a high priority in your organization and cut costs in other areas of your business when money gets tight.
In conclusion, you should never underestimate the power of technology to fuel the growth of your business. Tech-related issues, however, illustrate the fact that technology alone cannot deliver success. Instead, depend on education, solid business practices and good communications to make your IT investment work for you.