These days nearly every function of a business is underpinned by IT systems making the setup and choices made in that area vital for any new start-up or small business.
In this article we will look at the important things to consider before investing in your IT setup.
The first thing you will want to do is to purchase your internet connection. It’s important to research this area thoroughly so you can make the best decision. You will need a reliable connection, It’s important to think about how having no internet would effect your business. If you cannot possibly live with any downtime then it’s best to seek out a pure business connection that comes with agreed SLA’s with your provider rather than a standard residential connection.
In the event of your connection going down it’s important to have planned for this by being able to switch to your mobile / cell 4G data connection so you can keep the business running until the main connection is back up and running.
Likely the router that is provided by your Internet Service Provider will also give you a wireless network, Its important to think about the number of wireless devices you will likely have on the network and plan for future expansion. If you are likely having upwards of 10 devices on the wireless you may find the standard router is slow and struggles to cope with the amount of traffic. In this case you should seek out a dedicated wireless controller and access points.
You will need to think what hardware is required. Will all employees need access to a computer? Can they share? Will you run a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) scheme? If you want to look into BYOD then think about how you will secure everything and give employees access to the systems you require when everyone is using a different kind of device. You can learn more about BYOD on our website.
Do you need the flexibility that laptops give you, or is there the dedicated space for desktops?. Think about what they will be used for, if its just for accessing emails and word processing then there is no need to purchase the new, shiny, top of the range Apple Mac, when you can save that money, and purchase a more basic Windows machine or an even cheaper Chromebook.
Server & Storage
A server provides a single, high powered machine to centralize your data within your office. Everyone connects to the server through their desktop PC or laptop and it means you only need to update applications and carry out backups from a single location. The problem being, they require a heavy investment to begin with, and require quite a bit of technical expertise to get started.
You can decide on whether to keep an on-site server to store data and provide security and access to documents, or you can look at cloud servers and moving everything off-site. This has the advantage of being backed up and safe off-site but at the same time, if your internet connection goes down, you have no access. Cloud servers are easily upgraded for future expansion and there is no large initial outlay on the server hardware. Cloud servers are a great way to synchronize your data across multiple locations and you can learn more on our website.
Software & Communication
When deciding on the software your business will require think whether the accessibility benefits of using SaaS products over the internet outweighs the features that are available on full desktop versions of the software.
You will need to decide on an email provider, collaboration tools and communication tools and these can often be provided in one package for example via Microsoft Office 365 or Google’s G Suite
You can create the perfect office network that is robust and performs to a high level but if it’s only accessible in the office during office hours it limits you, especially in today’s work-whenever-wherever society.
Therefore think about a remote access solution or hosting your applications in the cloud so they can be accessed from home or on the road, allowing you and your staff to be more productive and offer a better service.
By its very nature, technology often goes wrong, when that happens it can severely affect your business. It’s important to make sure everything you purchase is backed with a good support team that can get you back up and running as soon as possible.
You may also want to look at a local company that can provide advice and support in the event of a disaster; being local they will be able to visit the site if there is no internet connection making remote support redundant.
Security / Backup
What do you do if the worst happens, if the office is flooded or hit by a fire. You need to make sure you have a plan in place so that you can get the vital systems up and running as soon as possible so it has the minimal impact on your business.
You must make sure you have anti-virus protection, that your data is backed up off-site and that you have a plan to get back online. You must also make sure you test this plan to make sure it works, there is no point having all these backups, but when you come to restore some data you find that the system doesn’t work, so test at least once or twice a year and amend the plan if necessary.
How Can MyQuickCloud Help
Here at MyQuickCloud we are able to provide a number of solutions to these issues. From providing a cloud server to host all your applications, store your data and provide a backup solution. If you have chosen to keep all your systems and data onsite we can provide the secure, remote access to make them accessible from anywhere and from any device. And both of these can be done without any technical expertise.