Is Your Business Ready For Brexit? | Reach IT

Into the unknown – is your business in shape for Brexit?

IT Management for Small business
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How many of us believed, little over a year ago, that we might actually be about to open the exit door of the European Union. I firmly believe that even those running the leave campaign didn’t in their wildest dreams think they would win. But here we are on the edge of the unknown. The promised post Brexit recession has not materialised (at least not yet) and it appears that we are heading for a hard Brexit with no idea of what trade agreements we might be able to forge with our European neighbours.
How do you see this affecting your business as we travel through the uncertain times ahead? For some of us it might be that the instability of Sterling on the foreign exchange markets is worrying as it increases your costs for materials you are importing. For others that same “problem” may be an opportunity for you to sell your products and services far and wide as UK products are now cheaper to most of the world. There may be others who aren’t directly affected by such things but know their customers are.
At this precise moment in time, whilst our fate rests in the hands of politicians in Westminster and Brussels, all any of us can do is ensure that our businesses are in the best shape possible. Lean and efficient, ready to react to whatever the next few years throws at us. In the 21st century most businesses have a fairly heavy reliance on IT systems to deliver their products and services to their customers. For most businesses IT is considered a necessary evil that comes at a cost. When a business is looking to save costs IT is always high on the list. You need to strike the right balance between spending too much and not seeing the benefit, and spending so little that you are not efficient enough to keep up with your competitors.
It is a dilemma that nearly all small to medium businesses face. Many simply survive with someone in the company who “knows about computers” looking after things. Whilst this seems a cost effective way of doing things when it is a small part of their working week you have to ask yourself what is the cost of them not doing their real job. And before you know it IT issues seem to start consuming more and more of their time. Medium sized businesses face a different dilemma – they might consider taking on a full-time IT professional. But what use is one IT professional, what are you going to do when they go on holiday and are unavailable. Some medium businesses may have outsourced to a “local computer company” when they were smaller. Is that supplier still the right choice for your growing business, do they understand your business needs and how IT should be supporting you to achieve your business goals? If not then perhaps the current IT Partner could be holding you back.
However, it is not just small companies that wrestle with this problem. From my personal experiences even very large companies struggle to find a cost effective way to manage their IT systems. IT department staff levels can be far too high, yet “Customer Satisfaction” is very low. An internal IT department doesn’t think it has to fight to keep the customer, whereas a good external partner understands the customer is king and provides a high quality service at a sensible price.
IT companies have similar Dilemmas. A good IT Service Provider has to find technologies and systems that enable them to support their clients in a cost effective way. There is no point having the best systems in the world if it means they are going to be too expensive for the clients they are trying to serve. They should be looking to Manage a client’s systems not just support them.
So a good IT Business Partner should guide you through the best ways to get business value out of your IT budget. They should understand that IT is there to support the business not the other way around. They should also make sure not to load up your business with unnecessary costs.
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