How much does it cost you?

Cornerstone managing director Chris Petty asks if burying your head in the sand when it comes to IT issues is really the most cost-effective practice…

A recent survey revealed that UK companies are losing £35 billion per year in productivity due to IT failures.

The report found that a typical employee would lose an average 6% of their time per day due to technology problems. That equates to 27 minutes per day, 2.5 hours per week and more than one working day per month.

Depending on the size of your business and its pay structure, it’s quite a simple calculation to work out what all this costs your business in monetary terms.

While technology issues hurt workplaces in terms of productivity and bottom line costs, they also damage the quality of the work and in some cases have caused their customers to complain.

So how can we reduce this and increase productivity?

Over the last 12 months, the top three IT issues workers experienced were slow running systems and equipment, connection failures and outdated software We’ve all heard the term “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. But what if it ain’t broke but is outdated and slow?

That’s exactly what too many of us do on Teesside. We’re running old, out-of-date software quite simply because we don’t like change.

Running out-of-date software may not be a problem for your business right now. You might be getting away with it. But keeping up to date ensures consistency and covers us in terms of cyber security.

The problem is, of course, that failure to update comes at a price. New software doesn’t link with another application so there’s now a need to upgrade two applications. Then it doesn’t like our old hardware so we have to upgrade our servers.

Sometimes we’re forced into an upgrade, as Microsoft withdraw the support and updates on old applications, leaving us with no choice.

The only real way forward is to have an annual IT budget, rather than relying on a big, expensive overhaul every three-to-five years.

Steady, constant change is always best. If you work out the cost of lost productivity, downtime and customer complaints if you continue to make do, I guarantee you’ll agree with me on this!

So my advice is to keep up to date with technology changes and utilise the Cloud for things such as email.

That covers out-of-date software and slow running systems. But what about connection failures?

Unfortunately, no broadband suppliers offer service level agreements, guaranteeing certain standards. We also know that many areas of Teesside have poor internet speeds.

The only real way forward is installing a leased line. This means guaranteed speeds, a four-hour fix and, if required, a broadband failover.

Of course, leased lines come at a cost when compared to your broadband but I think you’ll be surprised at how much costs have come down. And did you know there are grants available?

Finally, you need a good IT support company to offer the correct advice and implement the changes your business needs.

Hint, hint!

Chris Petty
Managing director
Cornerstone Business Solutions

 

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