Moving or opening another venue for your business can be challenging, transforming a completely empty shell into a fully functioning asset to your company can come with many obstacles, including IT… let’s take a look at how you can make the transition easier.
Getting the right kit
Choosing equipment and kit for a new venue or premises can sometimes be a difficult and expensive decision, but it’s always better to pay once and get it right than pay twice and get it wrong. There are so many technologies and emerging equipment to choose from, and it can be overwhelming.
There are many pieces to the equipment puzzle that are needed when opening a new venue, the basics usually include; WiFi, phone systems, internet equipment, cabling, PCs and laptops, leased lines, and a lot more… For specific venues such as hospitality and nightlife businesses, this can expand to tills, sound systems, and more. Equipment is undoubtedly an expensive investment, but get it right and it will make running your business so much easier.
What would Astraris recommend? We always say choosing kit that is designed and suitable for businesses is the best option. Let’s use WiFi as an example, cheaper domestic WiFi you would use in your home just isn’t suitable for a business, it will simply not have the capacity to support all the systems relying on it which can lead to a slow connection (which can slow your business down, not to mention it’s also very annoying!). It also doesn’t offer the level of security a business should have, so much valuable data including card details, payments, and other information is often sent over the internet, therefore, requires added security.
Let’s explore some of the basic equipment your business needs and what Astaris would recommend as the perfect option for any professional business.
Cisco Meraki is our go-to, and for a good reason! It offers one of the best WiFi connections, with added security measures, a cloud-managed network, location analytics, and more. It is the most secure and reliable network in our opinion, offering a strong connection for any sized venue (and with the option of wireless access points this connection can be strong across your entire premises not just in one area).
For smaller venues or a smaller business with a lower budget Astaris recommends Ubiquiti, it also offers a super-fast connection with all the added security at a lower cost, it may be slightly less advanced, and large businesses with big premises may benefit from the added features of Cisco Meraki, but Ubiquiti sure does come close!
Astaris will always recommend VoIP (voice over internet protocol) phone systems. They are 100% future-proof (with landlines being fully phased out by 2025), scalable for the rise or fall in your company headcount, offer amazing crystal clear voice quality, as well as having all the features a business will need (IVR, call recording, internal transfers, etc…).
They are a great option, especially for larger businesses that have people working in multiple offices, sites, and locations. They also are perfect for remote and hybrid workers as they can be set up on mobile devices and can be used anywhere.
A perfect example of larger businesses that benefit from all the features of VoIP is Astaris’ customer Freedom Leisure Group, they have multiple offices and sites all across the UK and the flexibility and freedom VoIP gives you is perfect for their businesses. They simply tell us when they need to expand their range of handsets, and we handle the rest! From ordering, set-up, installation, and maintenance it’s super simple.
PCs, laptops, and other hardware
This one can really differ depending on your business and it’s individual needs. Factors like quantity, price, what it is needed for and more should be taken into consideration when looking to buy hardware like laptops, PCs, tills, sound systems, etc… Astaris can offer advice and guidance to ensure they are suitable for you.
There are particular brands Astaris always recommends in terms of their functionality and reliability. Brands like Lenovo, Yealink (phones), Cisco and Cisco Meraki (CCTV camera systems and more), and Draytek.
The best thing to do is speak to IT professionals and make sure you buy something that will serve your business, its venue, and your employees the way it should.
Your entire IT network
It may seem obvious, but your entire network will either need to be moved or recreated if you are opening an additional space. From cabling and wiring to cloud migration, there’s a lot to think about and a plan should be written out before trying to move things around.
New equipment can be easily set up and installed in your new venue by IT professionals to make sure they are done right, so your new space can get up and running straight away.
Finally, does your current or your new premises have IT support, all of the systems, software, and equipment mentioned in the blog are fantastic but they can only keep your business running smoothly if they are running smoothly. IT support ensures everything in your entire IT network is being monitored around the clock for issues and can be resolved before they cause any downtime for your business.
IT support is the best way to get the most out of your IT and ensures every aspect is taken care of, so you can focus on running your business!