Businesses across all industries need to invest in technology to remain competitive. But because not all technologies deliver on their promised benefits, it’s vital for business leaders and/or their IT partners to make sure that their technology investments are worth keeping. Here’s how technology business reviews can help you in 2022.
A technology business review reveals the strengths and weaknesses of your company’s IT framework. It’s often performed by an internal Chief Information Officer (CIO) or a third-party IT consultant, like i3 Business Solutions, who will give an objective assessment of your technology and provide recommendations to help you meet your goals. If done properly, technology business reviews allow you to:
Every review starts with a cost-benefit analysis to determine whether an implemented solution is worth the continued investment. If there are technologies costing you a fortune in management and maintenance fees, your CIO or consultant will usually advise you to cut them from your budget and look at new technology options. Technology marches on and new solutions become available from upstart companies. At i3, we do our best to recommend cost-effective alternatives so you can do more with less. Our goal is to help you focus on your business, while we take care of your IT.
System-wide reviews of your IT infrastructure show you what processes are hindering business operations. This allows you to formulate solutions to increase productivity. For example, if employees are mainly sharing files via email, your CIO or IT consultant might suggest cloud collaboration platforms, like Microsoft 365 or Google Workspace, which store data in a centralized location for seamless file sharing. At i3, as one of the top Microsoft Gold Partners in West Michigan, we recommend using Microsoft 365. We rail against islands of information and believe in systems or platforms that integrate technology solutions to accelerate business results.
Enhance cybersecurity and compliance
Technology business reviews can also uncover cybersecurity risks within your business. Your CIO or consultant should look for missed patches, poorly configured networks, and other vulnerabilities that can be easily exploited by cybercriminals.
They’ll then compile their findings to create a more robust cybersecurity strategy, usually one that involves implementing advanced solutions like intrusion prevention systems, file access restrictions, and patch management software. Their recommendations should adhere to standard frameworks like the National Institute of Science & Technology (NIST) or Center for Internet Security v8 (CIS).
If you operate a business that’s subjected to data regulations like the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) or Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), consultants will also pinpoint noncompliant IT practices and solutions and then customize a strategy that ensures the privacy, integrity, and availability of your data.
Applying technology tools or solutions to cybersecurity risk is too simplistic of an approach. Priorities should align to the CISv8 framework including but not limited to:
The human firewall (people) is the biggest vulnerability. Human error is a huge risk. Therefore, it's critical to make cybersecurity phish testing and education your number one priority.
2-Factor also known as Multi-factor authentication, not only for your email - but also for cloud or external facing critical systems, should be your second priority.
Identity and privileged access management are priority number three. Zero tolerance and least privilege are process and policy level protections that require CIO or technology administrator execution.
Moving beyond anti-virus to EDR - Endpoint Protection & Response is priority number four that every organization will align to in the next couple days.
Lastly, as previously stated, technology marches on. Because new technologies are released at a breakneck pace, it’s important to pick those that will help you achieve your 2022 business goals. Technology business reviews keep you up to date on the latest technology trends and gauge the impact of implementing them so that you can make informed decisions.
Whether your goal is to increase profits, productivity, cybersecurity, or all of the above, technology business reviews can put you on the right track. Our seasoned IT consultants at the i3 office in Grand Rapids, MI, can conduct these reviews for you and develop a strategy that gives you an edge over the competition. For more information, give us a call at 616-719-4100.