We all know IT plays a valuable part in your company’s operations, but is it possible to quantify that value? By asking your IT guy the right questions, you should be able to get an idea of what they’re adding, or subtracting, from your business. Whether your IT is handled in-house or through a Managed Services Provider, here’s some advice on what you can do to help determine value.
Don’t accept metrics
IT people love using metrics to show how they’re contributing to your business. The problem is most of these metrics don’t show you anything. Sure, high uptimes sound great and low mean-time resolutions are probably a good thing, but how do these impact your business? Don’t arbitrarily accept these as signs IT is contributing to the value of your bottom line. Dig deeper and get an explanation as to why these metrics matter. There’s a reason your IT department wants you to see these metrics, but it’s important to have them explain it.
Ban “tech speak”
There was a time in the world when it was impossible to avoid “tech speak,” but that era has passed. Your modern-day IT person should be able to explain just about everything to you in plain English. Realistically, if they’re doing a good job, they should want to share that information with you in a way you’ll easily understand. If you find your IT department relying heavily on “tech speak,” chances are there’s something they don’t want you to know about.
Make sure your IT provider understands your business goals
If you want your IT working for you and adding value to your company, IT has to know your goals. That way they can manage your technology with these goals in mind. Too often companies assume their IT provider knows what their priorities should be, founded on company principles, but the reality is that your contractor will operate, by default, on what they think is best. When IT’s goals and your goals pull in separate directions, it can hurt your business. Make sure your IT department—again, whether in-house or outsourced—is pulling in the same direction as everyone else so that your technology can add more value to your company.
Meet with your IT provider often
It doesn’t matter if you have in-house IT or use a Managed Services Provider, you should be meeting with them on a regular basis to understand what they’re doing. There’s no need to banish them to some dark corner of the building or to summon them only when something breaks. By incorporating IT into the operations process and maintaining open lines of communication, you’re likely to see things in your office run a whole lot more smoothly. Not only will you get a better understanding of how IT is providing value to your business, your IT people will gain a deeper appreciation of how your company operates. This will help both sides understand how the other operates, enabling you to find new ways to help each other.
Listen to IT recommendations
Chances are that whoever is handling your IT has numerous different ideas on how your company can use technology to decrease costs, increase productivity, and become more profitable. You would be foolish if you didn’t at least consider what they have to say. One of your company’s most valuable assets is technology, and your IT department should be up to date on what improvements can be made. Sometimes, there’s nothing more valuable to a company than an IT department that proactively looks for ways you can get ahead of the competition using technology.
Contact our technology experts and find out how we can help you capture the most value from your IT investment.