Small businesses are on the rise and so is their need for IT services. On any given day, small business owners deal with an array of issues outside of the day-to-day operations of their company.
In our own research, we’ve found that technology solutions for small businesses can be difficult to find. Luckily, there are many providers out there willing to help you get up and running in this competitive marketplace.
When it comes to technology, small to medium-sized business owners have the same concerns as everyone else.
They want fast, reliable access to information, and they want their employees to be able to work from anywhere using whatever device is most convenient for them. In this article, we’ll discuss five small business IT solutions that are available to you today.
5 Frustrating Tech Challenges that Most Small Businesses Encounter
There are numerous challenges that small businesses face when it comes to IT. It can be a daunting task to find technology solutions for small businesses. Some of these challenges include:
1. Finding affordable monthly internet plans that meet their needs
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) can offer different levels of service depending on the size of the company and its budget. Small businesses tend to require more services like dedicated lines and higher bandwidth than an ISP can provide.
Capacity usually won’t be an issue for modern technology solutions. Bandwidth can easily accommodate multiple employees working from home or various locations daily.
Having adequate bandwidth helps your small business technology stack, as ISP’s won’t need to charge extra fees for more than one person using the Internet service at a time.
2. Not being able to afford the latest devices for employees
It is difficult for small business owners to be able to provide their employees with the latest devices that pack enough punch to keep everyone happy and productive.
Even though many new laptops and mobile tablets are now affordable enough for most small businesses, there are still prices that are out of the range of what most SMBs can afford.
3. Maintaining and Supporting the technology solutions the small business has purchased
Small businesses are at a disadvantage in which they may not have any on-staff IT experience amongst their employees, who can make sure the new device is secure and safe before it is connected to company equipment.
As a small business owner, it can be difficult to keep up with IT support and maintenance. There are so many things to consider, and it can be challenging for small business owners who don’t have a background in IT.
As a business owner, you should be running your business, not worrying about the technology solutions that keep it running.
This is one of the biggest reasons that many small businesses choose not to invest in technology management at all. Instead, they choose to do everything themselves or hire an individual with expertise on a part-time basis when they need help.
4. Failing to understand how IT can help their business
Many small business owners think they don’t need to invest in technology because all their needs can be met with the software and services currently available.
This is not true, however, as there are many ways that IT solutions for small businesses could help improve productivity or increase revenue for businesses over time if implemented correctly.
For example, cloud technology could be used to store important documents in one, secure place that can be accessed from anywhere or at any time. This is much more convenient than carrying files around on a USB stick that’s much less secure and poses a risk of getting shared with others both inside and outside the company.
5. Tailored IT solutions for small businesses can be hard to find
Finding Small Business IT Solutions can be difficult. These businesses will need to evaluate and understand their company needs before they begin researching.
They also need to make sure that whatever they purchase will meet their needs for the foreseeable future. The next step is to decide on a budget and take into consideration that small businesses might not be able to afford the latest devices.
5 Small Business IT Solutions
1. Implement A Reliable Network
A reliable network is important for a small business to have because it helps the business stay organized and run smoothly.
The best IT strategy starts with a strong, stable foundation of dependable connectivity. Before investing in anything else, consider the following:
- Choose your Internet Service Provider carefully and weigh prices versus quality.
- Consider your needs now as well as future expansion needs from day one of planning the network layout.
- Ensure that there is enough capacity for multiple staff or remote users to work from home or various locations daily without interruptions or added costs (e.g., dedicated lines and higher bandwidth designed for heavy traffic environments).
Once you’ve selected an ISP you will need to purchase routers and other networking equipment based on their own recommendations. It is best to make sure you have someone experienced working with you when selecting an ISP and setting up a network.
When it comes to building out your IT infrastructure, you need to be realistic about what is possible for your company’s size and budget limitations. The good news is that there are many options available so no matter how much or little money.
2. Integrate a VOIP Phone Service
VOIP phone service has long been the solution for small businesses looking to save money on their phone bill. When choosing between VOIP and a traditional landline, many companies have found that VoIP offers them greater flexibility and better functionality.
A VoIP system is more scalable and can grow with your company as you expand. Small businesses can choose from a large selection of phones, headsets, and other devices that work best for their business needs.
The price per line will vary depending on how many lines you want to install into the system, but all dedicated phone service providers offer small business plans.
3. Cloud Storage & Cloud Computing
Small businesses can save money on IT payroll by outsourcing their IT needs to the cloud. Cloud technology solutions, in general, are beneficial for small businesses because it saves them money in the long-term.
Because small businesses are less likely to have their data stored in-house, they can save money on hardware costs. With a cloud-optimized solution, small businesses can also have quick access to their data in case of emergencies or when there is a power outage.
Cloud storage and cloud computing is a good IT solution for Small Business because it’s inexpensive and it frees up resources. Small businesses can afford this type of technology even if they don’t have large budgets.
If these features seem costly, don’t worry. Many affordable service providers are offering great solutions at competitive rates. All in all, cloud storage will save your business both time and money which is why IT cloud storage should be a priority for any small business owner.
4. Have a Security Plan
A cyber-attack has the potential to cost a company millions of dollars. Small businesses are at risk due to their lack of IT knowledge and security awareness. Small business owners should be aware that cyber-attacks are becoming more common in recent years, so it is important to have an IT plan to protect against them.
Small businesses can take proactive steps to protect themselves which include keeping systems up to date with the latest patches, using strong passwords that are changed regularly, and enabling multi-factor authentication. Small business owners should also keep their employees informed of new vulnerabilities or security problems that are discovered to help them avoid cyber-attacks.
Small businesses should implement a cyber security plan to keep information safe from hacks, malware, and viruses. Smaller companies typically do not have the resources or funding to recover from cyber-attacks, so they should take the time to put together a comprehensive IT plan in order to prevent third-party theft.
5. Outsource IT Support
Outsourcing IT is a great Small Business IT solution because it can reduce the amount of time that Small Businesses must spend on IT support. Small Businesses may not have the skills or personnel required to provide all the IT services that their business needs.
While it’s important to choose a service provider that offers proactive maintenance and troubleshooting solutions, there is nothing more reassuring than knowing your business can get the help that they need when something goes wrong.
Outsourcing IT, or hiring an MSP also cuts the expenses of having an in-house IT team in half. Small Businesses need to be aware that it is important to research the expert small business IT solutions providers before they hire them.
There are some factors you’ll want to keep in mind before signing a contract with an IT service provider so it’s best to do some research first. For example:
- What type of experience does the company have with small businesses?
- How responsive is their team when it comes to providing customers with the help they need?
- What are some of the service packages that you can choose from and what do each of them include?
If your IT provider isn’t offering proactive maintenance, then chances are there will be an additional fee for any issues that arise. You’ll want to make sure that the company you choose is willing to work with you to find a solution so it’s best for small business owners who are looking for IT solutions. If you are interested in outsourcing IT, see if Digital Operating Solutions can help you with IT Services.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can a small business afford IT support?
A small business has the option to hire an IT consultant, or they can provide themselves with IT services. There are many ways to afford IT support for small businesses, one way is by purchasing packages that use only the resources they need like security or virus protection.
There are also monthly rates, or discounted rates available for small businesses who need IT services. Another way is by purchasing one-time service credits to solve specific needs like installing antivirus software for a few months.
What is a Managed Service Provider (MSP)?
A Managed Service Provider (MSP) is an IT company that specializes in helping small businesses run their network. MSPs offer a variety of services, including things like virus protection and security solutions. They also provide help with monitoring and repairing networks. The MSP industry has grown rapidly in recent years, which means there are more options available now than ever.
Why should small businesses consider remote support?
Small businesses should consider remote support because it is a convenient Small Business IT solution. Small companies can hire Virtual Assistants, or they can choose to have their IT needs handling by an MSP who offers remote services.
The best part about outsourcing your Small business IT solutions is that you don’t need to worry about any travel expenses for the service provider since they can manage your Small business IT solutions from their office.
What is cloud storage?
Cloud computing and cloud storage are beneficial for small businesses because it saves them money. Small Businesses can hire Virtual Assistants, which charge much less than the average IT employee. Small businesses also have quick access to their data in case of emergencies.
Final Thoughts on Small Business IT Solutions
Small business IT solutions can be expensive and time-consuming to maintain. Small businesses need a good IT plan for their company to grow.
You should have a good plan with the right tools in place to prevent issues and to stay competitive with other large companies like Amazon or Google, which are using new technology every day.
Small business IT solutions make it easier for small businesses to succeed in today’s market because of the help that technology provides them with each day. By implementing Small Business IT solutions into your business, you will find yourself more productive and able to save time.