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Any firm, regardless of the size, will face many challenges. Whether it’s a strict deadline, harsh industry regulations or aggressive competition, the construction industry will always offer its share of difficulties.
Despite being so crucial to a firm’s bottom line, one challenge that is often overlooked is IT. Specifically, the ongoing maintenance of its lifecycle.
You know when a backhoe or a crane is past its prime – can you say the same of the business technology you use?
There are many subtle (and some not so subtle) signs that it may be time to upgrade your technology:
If your old tech is working so poorly that it stops you and your crew from working, then it’s time to replace it. The downtime caused by old hardware isn’t worth the money you’re saving by hanging on to it.
Whether you agree or not, it’s a fact – Ponemon Institute estimates that every minute of even partial downtime can cost as much as $5,600.
The main cost of downtime is not the fix itself, it’s the halt in your firm’s’ productivity. If an IT-related or natural disaster occurs and takes critical systems offline, employees will be unable to complete their tasks, yet your normal business expenses will carry on.
The economy of downtime is unforgiving – it grinds your firm to a halt, racks up expenses, and keeps you from getting anything done.
1. Does Your Hardware Function Properly?
As step number 1, it doesn’t get much easier than this:
In a nutshell, you need to know whether your hardware is holding you back, making you wait, and slowing your firm down.
2. Is The Software Up To Date?
Now that you’ve determined how functional the hardware is, the next step is the software. Even if this technology hasn’t been turned on in a week, there will likely be some updates that have to take place.
Updates are important because they correct existing errors and mistakes in software, and patch potential flaws that could leave it vulnerable to security threats.
One by one, open up each program you would plan to use on a regular basis. If there are updates that need to be installed, a pop-up window will likely open on start-up. However, if the previous owner turned off that automatic function, you’ll need to manually check for updates, which can be done in the program preferences.
3. What Is The Status Of Licenses And Warranties?
After double-checking that everything is up to date, the next step will be to confirm the status of any existing licenses and warranties.
Depending on the type of firm, there may be specific software needed for daily operations. The bottom line is that if you need it to get work done, you should know whether you can use it.
There are a variety of reasons why you may decide to hold off on making a major upgrade to your technology, such as the cost and hassle. However, avoiding the issue for too long will do more harm than good, and will affect your productivity, security, and ability to get work done.
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