For Canada SMEs, IT strategic planning plays a critical role in your overall ability to support your customers, remain competitive, and be positioned to recover from a natural or technological disaster. But an IT strategy is more than just a plan; it’s a comprehensive outline of your approach to IT that ensures that your IT infrastructure supports your business goals, that you are anticipating and proactively meeting the needs of your business, and that your investment in IT is planned and predictable.
In today’s rapidly moving business environment, most SMEs rely on their IT infrastructure to conduct most of their business. From accounting and office systems to communicating with customers, and from scheduling appointments and managing services to managing payroll and inventory and increasing efficiency, an SMEs IT infrastructure is often the backbone of the organization. Your IT strategy must be flexible and dynamic because technology does not stand still (and neither do hackers).
Your IT strategic planning process should consider the following factors:
- Current market conditions
- Competitive intelligence
- Performance issues and identified areas in need of improvement
- Customer satisfaction
- Resource requirements
- Staff training and support needs
- Compliance requirements for your industry
- Budget requirements
- Current state of infrastructure
IT Strategic Planning Benefits for Canada SMEs
A lack of proper IT planning will impact your employees, your customers, and your bottom line. For example, without a plan in place for lifecycle management, you may find that the operating system you use to manage your IT infrastructure is out of date and no longer supported (Windows 7 support ends January 2020!). This creates not just a disruption in your operations but also a significant security risk to your organization. An IT strategy that includes a plan for lifecycle management makes IT costs more predictable. Proactive IT strategy planning is essential for successful SMEs. Other benefits include:
- Improved operational efficiency
- Increased profitability
- Reduced risk
- Improved business continuity
- Increased alignment between business objectives and IT objectives
- Ability to map future needs for better planning
- Ensured statutory and regulatory compliance
- Elimination of unnecessary downtime
- Nominal disruption of operations
Securing networks and private data is a top priority for organizations of every size in Alberta. SMEs are the lifeblood of Canada’s economy, but these organizations are only as strong as the IT strategy supporting their operations. If your SME needs help with IT strategic planning, IT infrastructure support, and IT security, get in touch.