Top 3 tech considerations small business cannot miss

28 August 2015 by SME Innovation Editors

Technology solutions are a cornerstone of any successful business, irrespective of size and type. In an ever growing and evolving digitised world, technology has become one of the driving forces of a nation’s economy, and businesses stand at the forefront of this change.

In an initiative to realise this change, IMDA is encouraging new areas of business growth in Singapore by supporting small businesses and their investments in technology and communication solutions. This is good news for startups and cash-strapped small businesses seeking a strong head start.

However, for long-term sustainability, businesses need to foresee the scope of harnessing technology to drive performance and productivity for the longest period possible. Effective investments into IT solutions are therefore important issues for business owners.

With the over-abundance of computing, storage, and networking solutions in the market, business owners can be baffled with choices. In order to find the right technology solution, businesses need to identify their pain points first and then go on a search for solution.

Following are three considerations businesses need to examine before making any investment in IT.


1. IT Resources

Managing IT resources can be both expensive and time-consuming for small businesses already struggling to meet the demands of growth. Apart from the capital expenses of purchasing and scaling IT infrastructure, businesses need to implement upgrades, sort out compatibility and licensing issues, and manage operating expenses.

When every expenditure or investment counts, business owners need to weigh in the efficacy and business justification of a purchase. For example, a chosen solution must not only meet current business requirements, but also evolve as the business grows without incurring extra costs.

One way to efficiently manage IT resources is by using Cloud-based IT services-a technology that is taking the world by storm.

In a drive to improve productivity and cut costs, businesses can consider switching from on-premise to cloud-based IT solutions. This enables business owners to enjoy hands-free approaches to upgrades, maintenance and scaling, thus saving on lead-time and costs for deployment and maintenance.

Further, in the buy-vs-rent debate, cloud is making rental compelling with its automated features.

With the pay-as-you-go subscription feature of hosted IT solutions, businesses can expect predictable billing that displays the exact usage of resources. Being scalable, hosted services allow flexibility and better control over investments-which, in the case of boxed services, runs the risk of over- or under-utilisation.

2. Considering Business Mobility

Another aspect of business that bears consideration is Mobility. As daily business hours stretch beyond the conventional 8-9, employee mobility is rapidly gaining importance. The business benefits of continued business tasks like customer relationship management on the move and accessing up-to-date information on any project are pushing business owners to deploy mobility technology.

By empowering employees with cloud and mobility devices that is connected with business network, businesses can provide continued services to customers across social media, email or live web chat beyond any geographical boundary.

For marketers, business mobility makes proper sense as mobile-ready applications available through the cloud enable them to track sales movement on the go. However, with new sets of connected devices including the tablet, mobile and laptop in operation, businesses need to prepare for a broadband network that can support high data transmission traffic in real time.

3. Underperforming Broadband Issues

According to Cisco’s cloud traffic reports, by 2017, cloud traffic will rise from 1.2 to 5.3 ZB globally. About 17% of that traffic will be directed from end-users using cloud for video streaming and collaboration through connected devices.

To handle the heavy traffic flow and enable seamless functionality of cloud services, businesses clearly require a bigger ‘pipe’. The bigger the pipe, the larger the bandwidth, which translates to better traffic handling. This means better performance of interdependent cloud applications, easy handling of heavy files on cloud, and uninterrupted business connectivity through cloud-based communication apps.

Also, an ultrafast broadband service is vital for smooth migration of software, infrastructure and storage to the cloud. With more businesses shifting from on-premise to cloud, a broadband that can shore up such an intensive action is becoming imperative.

In an effort to support small businesses with their technology needs at an affordable rate, service providers are increasingly offering cost-effective bundled plans and services to businesses. StarHub offers an exclusive bundle. The Smart Office Suite that provides an unified business connectivity, next-gen fibre broadband, voice and TV to businesses through a single pipe. StarHub SmartBusiness offers a cloud-based one-stop marketplace for your business needs, as well as Office 365—an up-to-date, affordable office tool. Find out how you can scale your business with this bundle.


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