A lot of companies have been tightening their budgets. This is especially true when it comes to information technology. However, even the simplest tech upgrades can end up bringing excellent returns on investment by not only improving performance but by boosting productivity throughout your workplace. Employees can do more with less and much more efficiently. It could be the right time to invest in IT to ensure your business is operating at peak efficiency.
Here are some of the top steps you should take to ensure you are getting the most out of your IT for running your business.
- Upgrade Your Computers
Any older operating system like Windows 7 could have potential security vulnerabilities that haven’t been patched. These operating systems are no longer officially supported. Because of this, they could have vulnerabilities that any savvy hacker could take advantage of to penetrate your system or network. This can make your entire network increasingly vulnerable to different types of cyberattacks. It’s not enough to install an Antivirus or malware software either. Nor is it enough to deploy a firewall. Instead, you need to plug the security holes at an operating system level. The only way to do this is by upgrading to a supported operating system that is receiving all of the latest security patches.
Windows 10 and Windows 11 are both supported right now. If you are in the Microsoft ecosystem, it would be advantageous to make the switch to either one. These operating systems are inherently more secure because they are newer and they get consistent patch updates. Also, they don’t require a state-of-the-art computer to run them either. You can run these operating systems on a relatively budget PC. These operating systems only require a 1GHz processor, 1GB of RAM, and 20GB of storage. It’s very likely that if your PC is running Windows 7 it already meets these minimal specifications. Thus, you can upgrade without upgrading your PC.
Having the latest operating system is not only going to patch security vulnerabilities, but it will also allow your employees to leverage all of the new features that come with it. This alone can be a great way to boost productivity throughout your workplace. Windows 10 and Windows 11 run on various devices. This includes laptops, tablets, and PCs. Because of this, your employees can enjoy a consistent experience across all of their devices to streamline their workflow.
Microsoft announced they would continue to support Windows 7 up until January 14th, 2020. At that point, they would end their extended support.
- Update The Hardware
Any hardware will get outdated over time. These computers, laptops, tablets, phones, and even printers will eventually get outdated and need to be moved on. For any exceptional old hardware, you may not even be able to find software and drivers that support the newer operating systems. IOn this case, you would need to make an upgrade regardless. Otherwise, you will find yourself dealing with a lot of compatibility and reliability issues that could be addressed with a hardware update. Newer devices are compatible with a QI wireless charger making flexible working easy.
One of the major issues with older computers is that they don’t meet the standards of today’s operating systems, browsers, and programs. A lot of operating systems and programs will max out the ram of legacy hardware by itself. These systems weren’t designed with a lot of RAM because 32-bit operating systems nor 32-bit applications needed them. This can be a major issue for those that use a desktop browser while using other software applications. Even a browser alone can take up as much as 4GB of RAM making it very difficult to use legacy hardware with modern browsers. You need your employees to be able to multi-task effectively and use the software while doing other things. Otherwise, their productivity will be stifled.
While you may think you are saving money by keeping older and outdated hardware, you aren’t. You could be doing the exact opposite. Not only is it likely to require maintenance in the form of repairs, but you are likely going to have a lot of inconsistency with the performance of the hardware too. Any shutdown of the hardware can set your business back by a lot. Because of this, you’ll want to upgrade things every 3 to 5 years. That way, your business is always being run by efficient and effective hardware for the times.
- Centralize All Of Your Data
Nowadays, there are more ways than ever before to organize your data and centralize it in one spot for all of your employees to access. Storing things the manual way is a thing of the past. Paper documents are not only inefficient but they cannot be easily shared. You can maximize your business efficiency by digitalizing everything. You want to scan physical documents and put them in the cloud.
There are so many cloud service options available. The low cost of cloud storage makes it very appealing to anyone. This is especially true for businesses that need to centralize data and who don’t want to necessarily handle the storage themselves. Best of all, you can have everything backed up by a reliable company. You will also have the ability to restore data and deal with disaster recovery efforts easier when you’re using a cloud provider.
With cloud storage solutions, you can deploy advanced security features including group permissions and more. This can keep your sensitive documents out of the hands of prying eyes.
- High-Speed Network
Being connected to the Internet 24/7 is essential in today’s digital age. You need to have access to a high-speed Internet connection at all times. Any downtime can cost you money. Your employees will need the Internet to run everything from customer relationship management software to streaming things. You want to give your employees the fastest Internet connection not only to increase their satisfaction but also to speed up their efficiency.
Another good thing that comes with having a high-speed Internet connection is better collaboration amongst your team. You can utilize and leverage a lot of services like Zoom and other meeting apps that will help keep your remote employees in the loop. This can also help your team members work together seamlessly without having to be in the same physical location at all times.
By leveraging the right technology in your business, it can improve your operations and keep your company moving forward in today’s digitally dominated landscape. You want your employees to work as productive as possible and technology is the backbone of making that happen.