Many businesses feel overwhelmed by technology, and it is easy to see why that is. There is just so much to know these days, and technology for businesses has never been more important than it is today.
Many businesses rely on new technological solutions to conduct essential tasks on a daily basis. But with the need for technology comes the need for knowledge of how to implement solutions effectively and how to avoid problems.
So how can you avoid being overwhelmed?
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The Growing Reliance on Technology
There are many ways in which SMEs now rely on technological solutions on a daily basis, both for basic and more complex tasks.
The growing reliance on mobile devices is clear, and this is a trend that has been growing continuously over recent years. As one of the most important technologies of recent years, mobile growth has led to more businesses employing staff remotely. With this, the demand to do more in the cloud has become increasingly important. Cloud storage and other cloud services like online collaboration on documents are now very much a part of everyday operations for businesses of all sizes.
CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is another area where technology is essential, as are appointment booking and acquisition. Mobile payment solutions and wearable technology are growing areas that could change how many businesses take payments from customers. Financial technology is also advancing. For example, there are now many different options for funding available for businesses, such as crowdfunding.
These are all areas where SMEs rely on technology. But while there is an increasing reliance on such solutions, there are concerns for many businesses that they don’t have the skills or the knowledge to take full advantage of the technology they need.
Technological Problems for SMEs
Technology is of huge importance for companies of all sizes, from the largest multinationals right down to the smallest startups. The problem for many is that they are overwhelmed by it.
Many small businesses experience technology issues. Small businesses do not have the specialist knowledge required to choose the best systems and solve problems. The fear of cyber attacks is a very real one, and the risks posed by data theft are also genuine, so security has to be up to scratch.
Also, many businesses do not know enough about investment risks when investing in new technology. They want to ensure a good return on investment, but they are unable to do so.
There are also physical problems to consider. For example, a server that is not up to the job and crashes can cause huge disruption. Network problems can seriously affect productivity, and this is not something that many small businesses can afford.
So what are the solutions?
Find Products Focused on User Experience
The first is to look for products and solutions with user experience in mind. If you have no dedicated IT support on-site to make these decisions, look for good customer service and systems that are easy to use. Try different solutions out for free if the option is available, and this will give you the chance to find out whether it is right for you.
Some providers offer much better customer service than others. Some may even use social media to provide their tech support. You could also consider choosing technology products that integrate with other leading technologies, such as cloud-based solutions.
Another option is to stick with what you know by choosing big-name solutions. Google provides a whole suite of business solutions that provide you with the familiarity you are used to and more advanced options. In general, business versions of popular solutions will often provide extra security and greater tech support.
Hire an IT Service Provider
Another option is to hire a dedicated IT service provider like CMIT Solutions for small business support. This is the best option, and outsourcing your IT requirements means you can use the services of a true expert when you need them. Essentially, you will have a highly-skilled IT team at your fingertips, and you can always hire a specialist rather than a generalist.
Proactive services mean you can plan, and budget for IT expenses. Security services can keep your network safe, and off-site data storage and Help Desk support can provide the solution you need. Rather than hiring your own IT generalist, you get full access to a specialist team of experts for any technology issue you require.
Make Full Use of Technology in Your Business
Technology is important to businesses of all sizes, but you can only take full advantage of the solutions if you fully understand them. Rather than becoming overwhelmed by technology problems and solutions, get smart by looking into outsourcing your IT to a specialist provider who can take care of all of your needs. At the same time, you focus on running your business.
Many Ginther is a freelance IT consultant who works with small businesses and organizations, mostly within the creative industry, from theatres to artists, advising them and helping their businesses grow yet also run like clockwork.