It doesn't matter whether you're a huge multinational corporation, a growing medium sized business or a small family run business, if you don't have a solid IT foundation, you are going to lose out to the competition. And we're not just talking about flashy websites or fancy social media campaigns, even the basic office day-to-day procedures require efficient computers and a network that is dependable. Your staff needs dependable IT to make sales, keep in contact with customers, track orders, do book-keeping and arrange schedules. And even if technology isn't your industry, your customers still want to be able to contact you via email, make online bookings and appointments, and carry out financial transaction over the internet for their own convenience. Yes, for the small and growing businesses of Rochester, Buffalo and the greater New York region, a dependable IT foundation can mean the failure or success of your enterprise.
So what is dependable IT? Well you could ask this question of any piece of tech or engineering. Simply put, dependable means it works as it is supposed to and doesn't keep breaking down. Compare it to your car - if it won't start up in the morning when you need it and spends more time in the garage than on the road, you can hardly consider it a reliable mode of transport and you'll be looking to exchange it for a more efficient model. It's the same with your IT, any downtime when your computers are not working or you're waiting for them to be fixed is not only a poor use of time, it's costing you money as you just can't operate at full capacity. Your IT is only dependable if it's working all the time.
A good IT partner can keep your IT dependable and for some companies, this is where a managed service provider like Capstone IT can help you. We are able to monitor your systems and computers remotely and around the clock. Our teams can see when a problem arises and fix it before it causes problems to your networks that results in costly downtime.
And the advantages of this to your organization are obvious. Your staff can carry on working without having to sit around waiting for a computer repair team to come and diagnose the problem, and then take time to fix it. Monitored networks means that downtime is avoided and your customers continue to get good service.
Here’s what you need to create a Dependable IT Foundation
Tip #1: Stay updated
Of course, even if your computers are running well, they won't continue to do so if they're not regularly updated. You need to make sure that you are carrying out regular backup, virus and malware scans, security patching updates and security tests. If you don't carry out this basic IT housekeeping, your systems could simply grind to a halt or be attacked by malware and viruses.
Of course, all this IT patching and updating takes time, and some expertise. In a small and medium sized business, IT resources can be limited, you may have a tech guy on hand but he can quickly be overwhelmed if all his time is taken up with routine maintenance and upgrades. You want your internal IT staff focusing on the main goals of your company. So here too, a service provider can help out. Updates, patches and security are all part of a good managed services package and ensure that your IT is always fit for purpose and working at its best.
Tip #2: Stay secure
Security is one area that every small and medium sized business needs to pay attention to. Hackers and scammers are constantly looking for ways to breach systems, and steal data and of the millions of attacks carried out on US companies every year, most are aimed at small companies - they can be easy targets. A successful breach could not only infect you with malware that causes your computers to stop working, it can also put your precious data at risk and jeopardize your good reputation.
Security is an area that requires genuine expertise. A basic desktop virus protection solution simply can't offer enough protection. Hackers and criminals are creating new malware at an astonishing rate. Did you know that a new type of malware is discovered every four seconds? To protect your IT, you need people who have the latest lowdown on the dangers out there and how to combat them. Most small businesses simply don't have the expertise or the time to stay abreast of what's going on.
An IT provider with the proper tools and processes can take a layered approach, and ensure you have all the tools and technology to keep hackers at bay. They can update your software, install and update firewalls; educate your employees on things to watch out for and be suspicious of; help you put in place stringent password policy and protect your email systems. Businesses of all sizes need a sophisticated and regularly reviewed security policy - here at Capstone IT we believe that this one of the most important foundations of your company's IT.
Tip #3: Be disaster ready
Even if you business is running well and your computers are running as smooth as silk, you don't always know what's around the next corner. This is why backup and disaster recoveryis another vital part your IT setup. A flood, fire or rogue employee could wipe out your hardware and servers so you need to ensure that your precious data is being backed up regularly in some way so that you can keep operating after a disaster with as little downtime as possible. There are many ways you can back up data, but the best way to do it is by having it backed up off-site, either in the cloud or a hosted server. A successful backup and recovery system can mean the difference between going forward or going under for your business. These precautions should be something every organization has in place, whether they have one computer or a 1,000.
Sitima Fowler, of Capstone IT says, "A dependable IT network is the foundation of any modern business, but you can't just cross your fingers and hope for the best. Like people, computer networks need some TLC and need to be nurtured and and looked after. Without updates and regular servicing they'll grind to a halt. This is where Capstone IT can help, with round the clock monitoring and expert services that save you time, money and stress."
At Capstone IT, clients leverage our services to focus 100% of their attention to growing their business while we focus on consistently advancing and supporting their systems to meet their growth goals and uptime requirements. Our clients include hundreds of small and mid-size businesses in Rochester, Buffalo and the surrounding Western NY area. Want more knowledge? Download our Free eBooks and get answers to the most common security and technology questions. You can also get in touch with one of our technical specialists by calling 585-546-4120 or visiting www.capstoneitinc.com.