Technology is a necessity for any business owner, but it can also come with several headaches. These can include unexpected downtime due to a crash, a cloud account breach, or ensuring employees are productive instead of frustrated by their technology.
75% of small business owners say that they face barriers to using technology as effectively as they could, including lack of qualified staff, costs, and security concerns.
How well a Massachusetts company’s business technology runs directly impacts productivity, revenue, and profitability, which is why it’s important to use IT best practices. By putting a solid IT foundation in place, you can eliminate many common technology headaches that business owners face daily.
What You Should Include in a Solid Technology Foundation
Small business owners that optimize their use of technology earn 2x as much revenue per employee. They also see year-over-year revenue growth of nearly 4x as much as less optimized peers.
To be in that group considered digitally optimized, you need to put a solid foundation of IT best practices in place, including the following.
Backup & Recovery
There are many ways that companies can lose data. These include ransomware attacks, hard drive crashes, accidental deletion or overwriting, cloud syncing problems, and more.
A major data loss incident can cost a company days’ worth of downtime and associated costs.
It’s vital to have a good backup and data recovery system in place that ensures your data is safely stored off-site and recoverable to a device quickly if needed.
Data-holding devices that you should be backing up regularly include:
- Mobile devices
- Cloud applications
Not taking proper care of your computers and other hardware can mean you end up paying more in the long run. Preventative maintenance saves you from things like:
- Downtime costs when a computer goes down
- Data losses due to hard drive crash
- Replacing expensive equipment sooner than you should have to
Just like your vehicle needs regular oil changes and other preventative maintenance to operate efficiently and achieve its full lifespan, the same is true of computers and servers.
When they are well maintained through a managed services package, you get a better ROI and aren’t being continuously interrupted by IT breakdown problems.
Cybersecurity Best Practices
A shocking 60% of small businesses end up closing their doors for good within 6 months of a successful cyberattack. The costs are much higher than many small business owners realize, and once they’ve suffered a major breach, it’s too late.
A simple antivirus is no longer enough to protect a business from becoming the victim of a ransomware attack, virus, data breach, or other security incident.
It’s vital to put a layered approach in place that includes cybersecurity best practices, such as:
- Advanced antivirus/anti-malware
- Web filtering
- Firewall with Advanced Threat Protection (ATP)
- Protections for remote teams (like VPN)
- Email spam/phishing filtering
- Employee cybersecurity awareness training
- Patch & update management
Account Privilege & Access Management
77% of cloud account data breaches are due to compromised login credentials. And if a hacker is lucky enough to breach a high-level user account, they can cause much more damage and steal more sensitive information.
Keeping your accounts secure includes a two-pronged strategy:
- Password Management: Ensure strong password protections are put in place, such as multi-factor authentication and configuring cloud and network accounts to reject weak passwords.
- Privilege Management: This involves giving users the lowest possible privilege you can that allows them to do their work, using a single dedicated admin account, and ensuring users don’t have admin privileges on their computer.
Most businesses are using multiple cloud accounts. The average employee at a company with 1-100 employees is using about 8 different work apps.
But companies often don’t have their SaaS tools customized for their needs, so they end up losing valuable productivity and can run into problems that slow users down.
Having your cloud tools customized by an IT consulting professional can improve security, productivity, customer experience, and overall efficiency.
Business Continuity Plan
One thing that 2020 showed us is that the unexpected can happen and completely change the way we live and work. Those companies that have a business continuity plan in place, can get back online faster after an unexpected crisis and thus mitigate the costs and damages.
A business continuity plan includes a framework for two important areas:
- Mitigating crisis events (ransomware attack, data loss, etc.)
- Recovering quickly after a crisis event (pandemic, natural disaster, etc.)
Put Several Protections in Place with a Cloud Care Pro™ Plan
Pro Tech Guy can help your Framingham business eliminate IT headaches and costs through our Cloud Care Pro™, which has multiple IT best practices handled for you in one plan.
Contact us today to learn more and sign up. Call 508-364-8189 or reach us online.