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Five Strategies for SMEs to Establish Effective IT Management

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By Mathew Philip, GoTo

The use of digital communication suites and accompanying technology has increased exponentially since the world adopted remote work. And now concerns of potential global economic headwinds are forcing firms to readjust in preparation for an uncertain future. Companies are expected to increase digital enablement and remote connectivity while simultaneously lowering overall expenses.

A recent survey from GoTo and Frost & Sullivan found that 43% of respondents believe the surge in hybrid work environments has made the duties of IT departments more difficult. IT staff are now looking at additional processes and duties, all without physical access to employees & devices or support infrastructure. IT departments may also be dependent on obsolete or inefficient software that is not suited to a remote workforce. This means that businesses can no longer put their IT strategy on the back burner.

The same report showed that 76% of IT professionals surveyed report experiencing a large increase in workload because of remote- and hybrid-work setups. These numbers speak to the growing concern in the workforce, especially for the SME sector, which might not have IT management as its top priority.

Below are five ways SMEs can establish an IT management strategy to reinvent themselves for the changing workplace landscape and the renewed attention it demands.

Check your tech stack
Technological updates or the introduction of new technologies to an existing system may run a significant compatibility risk — what if the new systems are incompatible with those already present, or integration takes longer than expected? It might not make sense to add new technology if its functionality cannot support the existing systems. This prepares the team to better avoid redundancies in the system, decreases costly deployment delays, and keeps budgets from expanding.

Plan the road ahead
Strategizing a technological roadmap will help organizations put together a hassle-free IT
management system. Organizations may avoid implementing new systems due to the pains
associated with migrating to new technologies. Therefore, it is essential to look for choices that enhance existing processes rather than fully replacing them, so the transition does not become overwhelming. Functionality is critical, but so is user-friendliness. Technologies that need multi-day training programs and lengthy user manuals are a recipe for staff grousing and delayed or inefficient adoption.

Experts on board
During the early stages of an IT implementation program, an IT evangelist can help get the ball rolling. This would provide more ‘settling time’ for employees and the organization in terms of new technology adoption. Employees should be given the time to embrace the change and fully understand the advantages of the shift. Confusion surrounding technology at the beginning of deployment will lead to frustration and resentment amongst employees further down the line.

Building a concrete IT shield for your business
Empowering employees to adopt and manage cloud applications for their use has allowed teams to innovate faster. But at the same time, It has increased security risks and older tools and methods are no longer enough to prevent new threats. Moreover, as companies rush to the cloud, they are often making the move so quickly that they cannot secure their newfound cloud products and services. IT leaders must make sure their budget accounts for any additional management or security costs that come with SaaS. Businesses today need to evolve from the excess usage of traditional VPNs to a fast-track and exceptionally reliable Zero Trust Network Access/Architecture to construct a concrete shield for their business operations.

Ongoing training and monitoring
The modern workforce is cross-generational and dynamic, which means diversity in training and learning needs. An in-depth program with hands-on IT training sessions should be a routine for employees if a new IT management system is installed. As with anything new, especially when installing a new IT management support system, it is highly essential to introduce and ease the operating processes involved for employees of the organization. As technologies roll out updates, it is essential to establish an ecosystem of training and ongoing support so that employees do not feel intimidated by the technology rollout.

Smooth take off
Companies are expanding beyond the boundaries and limitations of a traditional workplace. Employees working remotely may need to work with colleagues in different regions of the country or the globe. It has become crucial to introduce a one-stop IT management solution that has the dexterity to function from anywhere and everywhere with complete immersive technology and automation.

Done correctly, a well-integrated and operational IT management solution will enhance the business of any organization and boost overall productivity. It will also protect and secure the daily operations of the business with robust technology and security features.

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