Technology is the greatest tool that businesses have at their disposal. It can help you to improve efficiency, come up with solutions to problems and even save you money by cutting down on the number of employees you need to hire. However, it’s only an asset if you know how to use it properly. If you aren’t utilising it effectively, you’re just wasting money on it. Most businesses could probably get more out of their technology if they knew how, but most of the time, they’re making these common mistakes.
Not Training Staff Properly
It shouldn’t be news to you that proper training is essential if you want to get the most out of your employees, but so many businesses don’t put enough time or money into training their employees to use technology properly. This is an especially big problem if you implement new software and then just expect employees to work it out for themselves. They’ll spend the first month or so working at a snail’s pace while they get to grips with it and even then, they might not be making use of all of the new features, so you might as well not have paid for it in the first place. The reason that a lot of companies make this mistake is that they simply don’t have people that are qualified to give that training. In that case, you need to look to outside consultants like the EPC Group to advise you on which software to use, how to implement it properly and how to train your staff so they’re getting the benefits of it. If you aren’t doing that, you’re wasting your money.
Buying Cheap Hardware
Being frugal is a good quality in a business owner but there’s a difference between sensible spending and poor purchasing decisions. When it comes to computer hardware, cheaper is not better. Often, when a company is looking to expand and bring on new employees, they try to save money by buying cheap computers, but it’ll only end up costing more in the long run. A cheap computer is going to be far more likely to break and need replacing, it’ll also become obsolete in a couple of years and you’ll have to buy them all again. You’re much better off spending a bit more in the first place and buying hardware that will last you a lot longer.
Not Backing Up
Data protection is so important in business because customers are trusting you with their sensitive personal data. If you lose that data and break that trust, you’re going to lose a lot of business. Cyber attacks are one thing to worry about (we’ll come onto that later) but often, companies lose data because they aren’t backing up properly. If you’ve got a load of customer data that’s only stored on one computer and it breaks, there might not be any way to recover it. That’s why you should be backing up regularly, in more than one place. You also need to make sure that you’re checking that the backup is working on a monthly basis at least.
Outdated Security Software
If you don’t have any security software to protect yourself from cyber attacks, you’re already in big trouble. But most companies already know that so let’s assume that you do. However, that doesn’t mean that you’re safe. People often underestimate just how quickly cyber criminals learn to get around security software. We’re in a constant race to stay one step ahead of them and that means the software that you bought a year ago is probably already full of holes. You need to keep it constantly updated if you want to protect yourself and avoid any breaches. Don’t avoid updating it because you want to save money, it’s not going to be worth it if you do lose customer data because the loss of earnings will be far higher than the cost of security software.
Unqualified IT Staff
You need good IT staff to maintain all of your technology and keep on top of security for you but some people don’t know what the definition of good IT staff is. Your neighbour who fixed your computer for you once doesn’t count. People often make the mistake of thinking that somebody they know who is half decent with computers is good enough, and they’ll save money because they don’t have to pay them as much as somebody that is qualified. But a basic knowledge of fixing a home computer doesn’t qualify you to handle the IT department of an entire company. Just pay the money for qualified staff, you’ll regret it if you don’t.
If you’re making these technology mistakes, you aren’t getting the most out of your investment and you’re opening yourself up to risk on a daily basis.