In today’s highly competitive commercial environment, every business strives to be on top and updated in terms of business intelligence and automation. Everyone aims to establish seamless business process monitoring and updating. But for some, especially for businesses that are just starting out, or for those who remain faithful to spreadsheets, ledgers, balance sheet and voluminous piles of papers, an upgrade is not like buying a candy when you want to. There are some considerations that need to be taken and listed down in order to make the transition a little less painful.
How will you know if your current business technology has reached its limit, or is plain obsolete? Here are the signs that will tell you that you need an upgrade.
Are your machines and software getting terribly sluggish? This might be due to heavy transactions and a growing number of users in your office. If you are seeing signs of sluggishness, you need to consult with your IT team to check the cause. If it proves that the growing number of users and heavy transaction base are the cause, you might want to consider upgrading your system.
Sluggish machines are productivity killers. They reduce process transactions and outputs. If you have monitored that your entire manpower performs poorly in the presence of slow machines and softwares, this is a sign that you also need to upgrade.
3) Account and Client Base
If you are increasing in number of accounts and then suddenly a downshift happens, that means that the client’s satisfaction is poor. You need to check if your sales and accounts team are monitoring their accounts. If there are lapses happening here and there, and the complaints are starting to pour in, you might need to evaluate the cause of your company’s poor CRM (Customer Relationship Management).
If it is because of your staff, coaching and training is the solution. But if you have traced the root cause and it points to your CRM solutions (software), then have it checked by your IT team. If the client database is growing so much that your current infrastructure cannot handle it, then it’s time for an upgrade.
You should also consider a reach-out strategy by establishing social media presence to be able to get feedback from your end consumers and other clients.
4) File Compatibility
It is such a pain for everyone to always have to convert files because someone’s office equipment cannot read the current file version. If your team is suffering from immense frustration just because the files and other soft copies they receive from various senders are not compatible or vice versa, you should considering checking your IT’s suggestion on the replacement and other compatibility solutions. New versions (be it software or hardware) always have the best compatibility setup.
5) Down Time
This is when you know your machines are already behind the current technology. I have a very vivid memory of a manufacturing company processing a voluminous amount of data in their ERP (enterprise resource planning) software. The business solutions version that they currently have is third to the most current version.
Even though the ERP version is not too old, they continue to experience recurring downtime, compromising their key business process such as accounts receivable and payables, purchasing, inventory, and order placement. It is only when they lose two (2) main accounts due to delayed deliveries because of the down time in their order placement module, when they considered making an upgrade.
6) Business Model
If you cannot see the entire growth and shift in your business model as if there’s a blind a spot, then your current metric and analytics are not giving you the essential data you need in order to check the entire business performance. Either you need to upgrade of change your provider for a better result.
The key to determine the situation of your company’s technology is to sit down with your IT team and grade all facets of your business automation and security. If there are two or more pain points that are greatly affecting the performance of the department and your company as a whole, then you need to upgrade ASAP.