What used to be a nice-to-have has rather quickly shifted to need-to-have in today’s environment. The pandemic has likely forever changed the way in which we operate, with impacts continuing to reverberate in our personal, social, and certainly work lives.
Let’s think about the narrative that most of us perceived to be likely:
- Pandemic arrived
- We’d collectively shut down to economy, socially distance, and flatten the curve
- Aside from an expected reemergence in the fall, we’d return to “normal”, looking back on the entire predicament as a blip on the radar as opposed to one with lasting impact(s)
The goalposts have changed.
The charts – particularly those in the United States – do not paint a pretty picture. With graphs going up and to the right, we’re seeing more cases, more hospitalizations, and sadly, more folks passing away as a result of COVID-19.
What’s encouraging, however, is that we’re seeing many leaders in the private sector step up for their employees. Almost daily, you’re seeing, hearing, and reading stories of companies choosing to make the shift to remote last longer or in some cases, permanent. Impacts to the real estate market aside, companies are opting for the health and safety of their people over being back in the office without a clear-cut understanding of what “good” actually looks like.
What does this actually mean?
To do this correctly, we’re talking about a paradigm shift. Gone are the days where providing such capabilities are a strategy that the IT department is responsible for. The way we work has changed, and with that we introduce a whole host of questions about how to provide these capabilities. It’s no longer about if, but when, how, and who do we get help from?
The technology to pull this off the right way has been around for quite some time. Granted, it’s gotten better in many cases, more convoluted in others – but the central question remains the same for small and mid-sized businesses:
How do we pull this off?
In today’s environment, the old “fake it ‘til you make it” inherently provides for too much risk. Vulnerabilities are everywhere, data is far too valuable, and with IT at the core of operations in many (if not all) aspects of business there’s too much to lose.
Being solution-oriented, the short answer is to find an expert partner. The reality is that SMBs in many ways should have their pick of the litter. You can elect to hire internally. You can outsource. Truth is, there are upsides and downsides to both. Here are the questions to solve for:
- What technology and services will be provided?
- How do you address scalability?
- What, if any, elements are self-service as opposed to fully-managed?
- What are the variable costs I need to know about?
- Is this a cookie-cutter solution provider or is this made specifically for us?
- Similarly, how well do you know my industry? If there are regulators to answer to, how helpful can you be?
And at the end of the day, for IT for SMBs needs to do one thing….
It needs to work.
Small and mid-sized business owners and their end users want to do their job, focus on their customers, and not have to worry about usability, security, and the like.
Want help? We’re here. Drop a line to firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call, 212-660-6404.