As a business owner, you know that having a well-functioning IT infrastructure is critical to your success. But what are the best ways to optimize your company's IT setup? By following these seven tips, you can ensure that your IT infrastructure is running as efficiently and effectively as possible.
1. Regularly evaluate your IT needs
The first step to optimizing your company's IT infrastructure is to regularly evaluate your needs as your business changes. For example, you may need to add more servers or storage capacity, or you may need to upgrade your network security. By keeping an eye on your company's changing requirements, you can make sure that your IT infrastructure is always up to the task.
2. Upgrade your hardware when necessary
Outdated hardware can be a major drag on your operations. If your computers and servers are more than five years old, they may not be able to keep up with your company's growing demands. If you have slow machines that are prone to crashing, you not only have to pay more money for repairs, but your team's productivity suffers as well.
To avoid these issues, you should upgrade your hardware when they're out of warranty or when you notice frequent performance issues. If you have a limited budget, upgrade your most critical pieces of hardware first like your servers and network switches, and upgrade other hardware when your cash flow allows. It's also a good idea to do some research on the latest hardware offerings to see if there are any new technologies and deals you can take advantage of. By investing in new hardware, you can future-proof your company against changing IT needs.
3. Implement a holistic cybersecurity strategy
Security breaches often occur because companies have a weak cybersecurity infrastructure. There may be an absence of advanced threat detection mechanisms or lack of security awareness training. Whatever the case may be, your company needs to identify its vulnerabilities and implement a comprehensive defense strategy. This strategy should incorporate the following best practices:
- Enable multifactor authentication.
- Set role-based access privileges for company accounts, apps, and devices.
- Educate your employees about cybersecurity threats.
- Patch all software programs and operating systems regularly.
- Install the latest anti-malware software and firewalls.
- Encrypt sensitive data.
- Monitor your network for suspicious activity.
4. Boost network performance
Optimizing network performance is a huge boon for businesses, as it helps better support internet-dependent tasks like video conferencing, cloud computing, and file sharing. Here are a few simple ways you can achieve this:
- Upgrade your network switches and routers to support gigabit speeds.
- Install a quality of service system to prioritize different types of traffic on your network, like those used for VoIP calls.
- Add more bandwidth to your internet connection to reduce lag and improve speeds for all users on your network.
- Separate your network into different segments to improve security and prevent one area of your network from bogging down the rest.
- Place Wi-Fi access points strategically around your office to provide strong signal coverage.
5. Move to the cloud
If your company doesn't have the budget for enterprise-grade servers, you can take advantage of cloud services. With the cloud, you can access powerful server resources and software programs over the internet without having to make a hefty upfront investment. You'll only pay for what you use, which can save your company a lot of money in the long run. There are many different cloud services to choose from, including compute power, storage, databases, and more. You can even find feature-rich cloud software that can help you manage your business operations more efficiently.
6. Back up your data
Having a backup plan for when your data is lost or corrupted is critical for any business. If you don't have a backup system in place, you could lose months or years of work, costing your company time and money.
There are many different ways you can back up your data, but you'll generally want multiple copies of your data stored in different locations in case of a catastrophic event. You should also regularly back up your data and test recovery procedures to make sure your backup system is working properly.
7. Consult with a managed IT services provider (MSP)
MSPs are third-party companies that provide IT support and services to businesses. They can be a great resource for businesses because they have the tools, resources, and expertise to oversee your IT infrastructure. MSPs can help you with tasks like data backup and recovery, cybersecurity, network performance, and more. They can also help you plan for future IT needs and implement new technologies.
Athens Micro, in particular, is an MSP that can optimize your IT. We can help you assess your current IT setup, identify areas for improvement, and implement the best practices for your business. Contact us today to get started.