Tip of the Week: Maximizing the Value of Your IT Investments
Businesses are in a tough spot right now, which makes their costs an even bigger issue for them to keep in mind. Luckily for businesses everywhere, however, many technologies are available now that can greatly benefit their operations—without being unattainable due to their price. Let’s consider five such technologies and strategies that can bring productivity and efficiency without sending you into the red.
Software as a Service (SaaS)
With them being a tool used daily, your business can’t really afford to skimp on its software solutions. Once upon a time, this meant that a business was bound to be on the hook for an expensive and temporary investment that they would have to re-up later to keep up with the updates.
SaaS helps to remedy this. Instead of the above methodology, Software as a Service gives you access to the most up-to-date version of a software title that is available, for the number of employees that work best for you. Does a small team need a particular tool that nobody else does? SaaS allows you to equip those employees with the appropriate software on a monthly subscription basis.
As a result, SaaS enables you to transition a capital expense into a sustainable operational expense, simplifying your budgeting. This, paired with the innate scalability of SaaS, allows practically the smallest businesses to enjoy the benefits.
Stopping the Binge Spending
It isn’t unheard of that, just as they try to pull the most ROI out of their solutions as possible, many business owners will then try to change everything at once. This strategy isn’t the most practical one to follow, never mind the fact that implementing these changes at all is going to be a challenge.
Instead, businesses should prioritize and focus on individual improvements, ensuring that each is effective and scalable before adopting another. This will help reduce the chance of overinvesting in a solution or investing in one that isn’t effective.
Something else to keep in mind, concerning your software: it is only as capable as the user putting it to use. If the user is unaware of its potential, you simply won’t see the returns you could otherwise. That’s why you need to make sure that you properly train your team on what they can do with the solutions you’ve provided them. If you don’t, you could find yourself pushing a frustrating hassle on your team—instead of a beneficial new means for them to accomplish their objectives—potentially frustrating them and leading them to push back.
This kind of training will need to be ongoing to get the most out of your solutions, especially as they improve over time. Make sure you leave yourself open to questions and offer your support to your team as they work.
Prices for anything can rise and fall, which creates more opportune times to invest in the solutions you need. Naturally, many solutions will be introduced at a high price and become less of a financial burden over time as the technology improves. Just consider it—video conferencing once required businesses to invest a ton of money into the infrastructure it demanded, and now it’s built into every smartphone available. Being an early adopter can sometimes be beneficial, but it often pays off to wait a little while for demand to settle and prices to level out.
Finally, it’s important that you streamline your investments by focusing on those investments that can benefit your operations the most. Consider what could come from each of your potential improvements and which would do the most for your business. That should be the first thing you invest in, and what you build your later investments upon. While this may be some basic advice, it is no less effective for it.
For more assistance in stretching your IT dollars further, reach out and talk to us about our managed IT services. Comprehensive coverage and support are practically a call to (616) 394-4940 away.