The technology landscape has changed dramatically over the past few years — and even more so recently, with big leaps in areas such as artificial intelligence (AI). These new changes have made it increasingly difficult for business owners to determine where an upgrade may be needed and what options make the most sense for their operations to stay competitive.
On top of an increased pressure to upgrade is the growing risk of security breaches. Cyberattacks have risen just as dramatically as the technology landscape, adding to the complexity of business owners wanting to stay current with technology while keeping their private data safe.
Achieving a balanced technology strategy that allows for automation and maintains data security is possible, but it takes time and proper planning. Not sure where to start? Here are some key considerations to help your business implement an optimized and secure technology stack.
Does your current technology help or hinder your overall business growth and goals?
When developing your business’s technology strategy, it’s crucial to know all software programs your business is using and if they’re getting the job done. With numerous software options available on the market for each business area, you may have opted to upgrade as you go and are currently dealing with a disjointed web of data sources and systems. Conducting an audit of your current systems can help you identify where integrations can be made and where budget may need to be allocated for new technology.
If seeking an upgrade, what capabilities make the most sense for your business?
With technology constantly evolving, it’s understandable to want your business to stay ahead of the curve. After you have assessed your current technology stack, if you’ve decided you’d like to upgrade or replace a particular program, it’s essential to research a multitude of things before making a purchase.
Consider these items first:
- What capabilities were lacking in the old software that you’d like to see in the new software?
- Can the new software integrate with any of your existing programs to streamline and centralize reporting?
- Is the new software built to scale so that you can invest in it for the long term?
- Do you have the resources and staff to support a new program, or does a managed technology provider make more sense?
How strong are your cybersecurity protocols?
If your business wants to invest in state-of-the-art technology, you must also be prepared to invest in strong cybersecurity. Many businesses assume they’re immune to cyberattacks due to their size or business presence, but that’s simply not true. Nearly every business generates and stores some kind of confidential data, thus making them a target for cybercriminals. To protect your business against growing threats, your technology strategy should include a range of cybersecurity measures, such as:
- Routine cybersecurity training for employees
- Assessment of current cybersecurity protocols to identify vulnerabilities
- An incident response plan that lays out next steps in the case of an attack so that your business can continue running as smoothly as possible
- Administrative controls to prevent fraudulent activity
- Firewalls, VPNs and other network security programs to keep data safe
- Cyber liability insurance to cover costs associated with a cyberattack
The evolution of technology isn’t slowing down anytime soon. There will always be “shiny new toys” on the market that may be appealing at first glance for your business. Taking the time to assess your business’s technology needs and develop a comprehensive strategy that accounts for cybersecurity will ensure your technology stack is not only secure but also fully aligned with your future goals.
At Creative Planning Business Services, we partner with clients to ensure they’re using their technology to its fullest potential. From information security to fully managed IT services, we have the expertise and resources to innovate and protect your business. Schedule a meeting with our team today to learn more about our range of technology services.