Top 10 SMB Technology Adoption Risks

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How often do you realize what you ‘should’ have done, after the fact?  Wouldn’t it be great to have a guide to help you avoid risks – especially technology-related risks?

Small and medium businesses, unfortunately, seem to adopt technology in a manner that creates risks, problems, and additional cost when they could have been avoided from the start.  Here are ten technology adoption risks you need to avoid – today:

1. A “Set It and Forget It” Mentality: Hardware, software, information databases, and networks all require regular maintenance.  Ignoring this compromises productivity and increases business cost.

2. Buying New Software , But Skipping on Hardware Upgrades:  To take advantage of what new software has to offer, hardware upgrades are almost universally needed.  Skipping on hardware upgrades costs time, money, and productivity.

3. Letting Price Drive the Decision:  Many times SMBs choose the least expensive option only to discover that their choice doesn’t have the functionality they really need.  Or the business will choose to do their own installations and upgrades – to save $$.  This approach leads to poor technology performance, increased business cost, and missed market opportunity.

4. Failing to Plan: Don’t adopt technology without first having a plan.  Take a proactive approach to understanding your business needs, what options are available, and how and when to budget for them.  Adopting technology at the point of a crisis leads to overspending and less than desired results.

5. Allowing “Bootleg” Software:  With the ubiquity of the internet, software is easy to share and obtain.  SMBs, in an effort to manage cost, will adopt or purchase software that is not legally licensed.  Doing such is a legal, productivity, maintenance, and support risk that is played out through increased cost and time.

6. Implementing “Good Enough” Solutions:  That inexpensive home-oriented wireless router just won’t hold up in a business setting.  Likewise, that spreadsheet is not the best tool to manage your customer information.  Get the right solution for the need, every time.

7. Thinking “We Can Manage It Ourselves”:  What business are you in?  Unless you are a technology business, let the experts manage your technology for you.  Focus your energy, time and resources on your core business, not the technology.

8. Demanding Technology Remain “In-House”:  A common perspective is that all the systems, applications and information must be physically kept at the business location.  The state of technology today, is such that many of these components can be located anywhere; often with more security and better management than if it was kept in-house.

9. Skimping on Security:  Your business information is critical to your future success.  Protect your business information from disaster, intrusion, virus, spam, or internal data theft.

10. Not Keeping Track of Technology:  Understand what technology you have and how it is being used so you can reassign, upgrade, or dispose as business need demands – not as your users want.

By NextCorp, Ltd., Microsoft Dynamics GP Partner for Southern Texas

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