With technology affecting nearly every aspect of your business these days, a strong information technology (IT) infrastructure is essential for your startup from the very beginning. Whether you employ an in-house team or outsource IT services, they will play a vital role in getting your company off the ground, keeping it running smoothly, and helping it grow.
Just why is IT such an important part of your burgeoning startup? Here are some of the key reasons.
IT will strengthen security at your business
Some of the most powerful and lucrative companies in the world, from Walmart to Yahoo! to Anthem, have suffered cybersecurity breaches that have cost them millions – and in some cases even billions – of dollars. These long-established corporations managed to bounce back, of course, but not without a hit to their reputation.
When your business is still in the startup phase, you can’t afford to let your security fall by the wayside. A startup simply doesn’t have the resources a large company has to make it through a cybersecurity failure.
Security is often the number one priority for IT professionals. They’ll put systems in place to protect company and consumer data and safeguard your technology from hackers, installing antivirus software, firewalls, VPNs, and other tools. Since security is such a big concern, consider working with IT staffing services or outsourcing companies to find professionals who specialize in this area.
IT will help you store information
Businesses generate a considerable amount of data on a regular basis, from documents and financial records to consumer information. IT services can help you manage and store all the data you have at your disposal, using cloud-based solutions and other methods, for years on end.
They’ll help you back up sensitive, private, and otherwise important information, preventing non-authorized personnel from viewing it, and allowing you to access it on an as-needed basis. They will do so while keeping it from taking up valuable storage space on your hard drive.
IT can improve communication
Your IT providers can also help you hone your lines of communication within the company, building or installing platforms for meetings, video conferencing, phone calls, and more. For instance, if you want to install an internal instant messaging system, ask your IT personnel to create one.
This will allow you and your employees to send each other quick updates and share documents and resources without having to leave their desks or send more formal emails. Additionally, the IT team will always be there to ensure that all communication systems are up and running smoothly on a daily basis.
IT will work with you to solve problems
When people think of IT, troubleshooting is one of the first things that comes to mind. And it’s true: IT providers can help you solve problems, whether that means transferring information to the cloud or fixing software that isn’t functioning properly.
But computers aren’t the only equipment they work with. They’ll also assist with ensuring that printers, scanners, phones, copiers, and pretty much anything that involves hardware or software are working properly. Even equipment that seems to be functioning well can be improved when you have skilled IT professionals.
Moreover, IT isn’t just there to help when equipment breaks. They’ll also work on preventive measures to ensure that operations will run smoothly, building platforms that will, for example, install updates and run security checks automatically, without their intervention.
IT will help you innovate
Innovation is the key driver of the success of any company, whether it’s new or long-established. The products you create will make or break your organization. While IT professionals are not the same as software developers, they do have the technical knowledge to work with your development team to hone your products.
They will also advise you on the feasibility and viability of apps and other software you’re considering launching or working on. What’s more – the IT team can build you platforms to “set the stage” for innovation, such as project management software or social media management tools.
IT touches nearly every department at a startup. Digitization is affecting most operations, and IT plays a central role in keeping everything running smoothly. No matter what your organization’s specialty or niche is, IT is there to make your business more successful.
However, that doesn’t mean you need to hire a full-time IT manager on day one. Many startups have limited resources, which makes the idea of turning to IT staffing services to find temporary or on-demand employees or outsourcing the work to a third-party vendor appealing. These professionals and services tend to be highly skilled and knowledgeable but often cost less than in-house employees they’re retained on a project or temporary basis.
Whichever option you choose, work closely with your provider to ensure that they have the competencies you need in a partnership to help your business thrive.