Many businesses encounter lots of challenges when it comes to IT, in particular, SMEs who don’t have an internal IT team. IT can be challenging for lots of people and simple mistakes can put huge amounts of stress on companies, so let’s take a look at what the most common issues are, and how you can work on preventing them.
Every business relies on WiFi in some aspect, but businesses that are customer-facing often suffer the most obvious consequences. Gyms, restaurants, hotels, retail and more all rely on WiFi to directly serve their customers, so when this drops out it can result in a total break in trading.
One of Astaris’ customers (before we took over their IT network, estimated a total loss of approximately £25,000 over the course of a weekend, due to a complete network dropout!). Not being able to take orders, process orders, and take payments can put major stress on any business, so don’t let it happen to you!
What can be done about this? Depending on your location and how good the fibre to the cabinet is, that’s not to say you have zero control over YOUR premises individually. Having a professional, business-grade kit in place is the key to having a strong, reliable connection.
Good internal networking and cabling combined with good WiFi equipment is the perfect recipe for a stable connection. Astaris will only ever supply your business with the best Cisco-Meraki kit or Ubutity. This ensures you are using equipment that is designed for your business, that, coupled with our ongoing maintenance, won’t let you down.
Having secure systems in place is essential for any business, particularly when it comes to your customer’s data and GDPR. Make sure there are security systems in place to keep your business and its data safe.
If we consider where the biggest mistakes are made when it comes to protecting data, we will most likely arrive at user error. Employees who have not been trained to identify ‘fake’ emails or Phishing or Ransomware as they are known, are the greatest risk to your business.
Placing network security in place across your business and all its devices is a great way to avoid these sorts of accidents from happening. Ensuring strong passwords are used throughout the company is also a great way to ensure your data is safe.
Astaris are Knowbe4 partners, meaning we can supply your employees with the training on safe practices whilst online and at work, as well as test their knowledge with emails and what to look out for.
Deleting/losing important files
Closing a tab without saving your work? We’ve all been there! There’s no need to panic, technology has come a long way and it’s very rarely the case that once it’s gone, it’s gone for good!
The first port of call should always be to check the recycle bin (or if you are on an Apple device, the ‘trash’), if not you should try searching for the file name on your computer.
Many businesses are now using Google Workspace and Office 365 to run their business, which means your work automatically saves, as well as having all your files stored securely in the ‘cloud’. To find out more about the different cloud-based services and which one is the right fit for you read this blog post.
In terms of backup, on the very rare occasion a phishing or ransomware attack is successful (which we will cover more later) the cost of recovering the lost/stolen data is often far more detrimental than the actual cost of the ransom. Having an IT support provider that offers data backup services is really important. For example, Astaris is a Datto-certified partner, meaning all of your data is securely backed up and recoverable in a worst-case scenario.
As mentioned previously, spam and ransomware are huge security threats for any business, and shortcuts should not be taken. Spam and ransomware protection is the single best way to protect your business against the risk of compromising your data, as well as having a clear, spam-free email inbox.
Spam and ransomware protection help to identify malicious links, attachments, and contents in emails so they don’t even appear in your email inbox, eliminating a huge risk of your staff even seeing them. Of course, with ransomware and phishing emails becoming increasingly more intelligent and advanced, you can never guarantee 100% prevention from them ending up in your inbox.
Inhouse Vs outsourced
The question of whether you should outsource your IT support is one that creeps up for many businesses and depending on your business and its needs the answer may vary. For many businesses including SMEs, outsourced is often the best solution.
Let’s look at some of the pros of outsourcing
Pros of outsourcing with Astaris:
- Cost-effective and fixed monthly costs
- 24/7 support
- Support all year round, no need to worry about employees on annual leave/sick leave
- Flexibility to scale up and down depending on your company size
- Remote support, means less downtime and is perfect for your employees working remotely
- PCI compliance
- Network security
- Ongoing support and maintenance from our expert team of IT engineers
Overall, there are so many issues that businesses can face, and IT is something that can be very challenging, so it’s best to leave it to the experts.