Some SMB owners might look at a competitor and wonder how to emulate their success. As it turns out, one of the areas in which we see a difference today is in the way successful businesses approach computing.
Have you every do this…
Most of us have found ourselves sitting in coach on an airplane, looking enviously at the curtain separating us from the first-class passengers. And, at times, we may have found ourselves wondering what truly makes us different from them, and perhaps envision how we could be more successful. IT investments can help you get there.
This question of the haves and have-nots extends to the business world as well. Some SMB owners might look at a competitor and wonder how to emulate their success. As it turns out, one of the areas in which we see a difference today is in the way successful businesses approach computing, according to the Global SMB IT Confidence Index recently conducted by Symantec. The survey yielded a top-tier group of SMBs and a bottom-tier group, segmented by how confident they are that IT can positively affect their overall business.
Using IT investments to your advantage.
Top-tier SMBs have been influenced from the beginning by their founders’ philosophy of fully embracing technology; as a result, they are more likely to view it as strategically important for moving the business forward – by a margin of 83 percent compared to 44 percent of bottom-tier companies. They also more frequently take advantage of advanced technology industry trends like mobility and virtualization, deploying a high-quality infrastructure as part of their overall business plan.
These top-tier companies feel that advanced IT initiatives are worth the risk to gain a competitive advantage. And it’s working out for them, because this group rated themselves as more secure overall and encountering fewer cyberattacks, compared to bottom-tier companies. The result is these confident SMBs incur 51 percent less cost as a result of attacks, and they also suffer fewer challenges with other technology implementations like storage and backup. In short, they experience better IT success while spending about 7 percent less overall on technology.
How to get where you want to go.
In order to achieve the status of these top-tier companies, the report makes three recommendations that MSPs can suggest to their customers, to help them become more confident and successful:
First is to consider the true value of IT investments. SMBs are often leery of upfront costs without the guarantee that less robust (and often less expensive) point solutions will work just as well as the comprehensive technology products. It is crucial to relay to your SMB customers that investing in quality infrastructure now will deliver long-term benefits.
Next, SMBs should consider how IT initiatives can influence and augment their overall business goals. If they want to experience business innovation, for example, capitalizing on advanced IT trends like mobility and cloud can help them reach that goal. Other objectives might include increasing efficiency or cutting costs, which can also be addressed in part through a proactive approach to IT.
Finally, SMBs should place special emphasis on data protection. With 31 percent of all targeted attacks directed at SMBs, we can see that cybercriminals are aware that smaller companies tend to have a less-than-desirable security posture. The message MSPs need to deliver to their SMB customers is just because they are small doesn’t mean they have to be easy prey. There are a wide range of security solutions designed for small businesses to help them mitigate risk and improve their overall security posture.