I’ve had quite a rush of contract renewals in the last few months, all of them have had their own challenges and problems to solve but one common element I found was that changing technologies can help find solutions that simply were not there before.
If your IT services contract is due for renewal then it can give a chance to wipe the slate clean and look with fresh eyes at what it is that IT does for your business. You may be very happy with your current arrangements which is all well and good but rather than simply signing up for more of the same it may be time to take a step back to look at how you do things and whether you can do them better.
A contract renewal could be seen an opportunity to think about the way you work, and the way you want to work. Consider how IT can help you as a business rather than having your business mould itself around whatever IT systems you happen to use.
If you are coming to the end of a multi-year contract, the technology landscape would have markedly changed from when you last put pen to paper – fully cloud based services are rapidly becoming the norm rather than the exception, and this in itself has opened up possibilities for the way you can work.
One thing that frequently comes up in conversations with my customers is the issue of flexible/ remote working. Do your employees need to be chained to their desks or are there ways of achieving this flexibility without compromising productivity? I have had clients who have decided that as their single biggest expenditure is on office space, they dispense with an office altogether and be entirely mobile. I appreciate this represents a somewhat extreme example and I’m not for one minute suggesting you cancel your office lease but it is only relatively recently that this has become a very real option for small and medium businesses.
Something to think about – What data is accessible to your employees from home or from the local high street coffee emporium? Furthermore what do they actually NEED to be accessible from these places? Do they need a whole disk full of files or would email on a mobile device do the trick? For example, field staff do not necessarily need to take the entire contents of a filing cabinet to every appointment “just in case”
Earlier this year the Olympic Games in London (remember them?) did mean that companies in London – albeit temporarily and quite probably reluctantly – allowed some degree of flexible working – simply out of fear that employees would not be able to make it to the office. The tactic to terrify people out of London for the duration certainly worked and we were presented with the sight of half empty (or should that be half full?) carriages on the tube. It is true that some businesses effectively went into hibernation for the period, but there were many who managed to carry on working normally. This experience could be treated as an experiment in mass flexible working and quite possibly a vision of the not too distant future.
Companies are different and employees within them are all individuals – what works for the business and employees in company A will not necessarily work for company B, It’s important that a system works for you , rather than the system dictating the way you work.
Before committing for a further 3 years, take the time to explore your IT services, you may be pleasantly surprised how improvements in technology and the new solutions available in the market may very well help you advance as a business.
We are always available for a chat, drop us an email or give us a call and we will arrange to have your Account Manager, or in the case of new business a Sale Executive, cover these options for you in more detail.
Make sure you take full advantage of what technology has to offer!