Running a business requires that its owners be wary of the unexpected. Among the many unforeseeable forces facing today’s business managers are computer-related headaches. Not having a plan in place when such anomalistic technical events occur can be catastrophic to an organization. Adherence to the following guidelines concerning proper preparation will provide managers with their best chances of an effective response should computer-related issues strike.
Network Security and Data Breach Protection
An expansion in the use of Internet technology for business purposes is translating into an expanding number of computer security breaches experienced by businesses today. The good news is that 80 percent of these security breaches are coming from inside the enterprise, meaning that the problem of data security is something that is at least within management’s control. To this end, managers must act preemptively and use vigilance and planning to safeguard their vulnerable computer networks.
Lack of Skilled Workers
A looming shortage of skilled workers remains top-of-mind for many of today’s business leaders. Recent research by industry consultants suggests that top executives are presently worried about the availability of skilled workers going forward. Forecasters believe that millions of unskilled workers will go without jobs even many job vacancies go unfilled. The one clear solution to this looming problem is additional training. Organizations can do a better job of leveraging network technology to enhance their pre-hire training methodologies. Workers can improve their chances of success by sharpening their computer skills. This can be done with completion of a Bachelors of Computer Science Degree.
Network congestion can lead to serious problems for managers looking to deliver results for new and prospective customers. A slow network can spell the death of a brand if the problem is not addressed promptly. Network congestion can be caused by insufficient bandwidth, bad NICs, failing switches and routers, netBIOS conflicts and general technical obsolescence. When networks bog down, there are solutions. Commonly, efforts at increasing capacity work well enough. Often, a dedicated connection with optical carrier-grade connectivity is all that is called for. Some organizations can benefit by simply upgrading their networks from megabit to gigabit speeds.
In business, little attention is paid to software obsolescence yet it costs tens of millions of dollars in lost productivity every year. Software obsolescence is something that is neither well understood, and its influence on the bottom line goes largely ignored. Effective approaches to mitigation of obsolescence include negotiated license downgrades, purchasing source code for internal development, re-hosting (technology porting), re-qualifying, and adjustments to media management (data storage) practices. Storage and maintenance of the media used to archive software is a critical and often overlooked factor contributing to software obsolescence.
Risk is inherent to all business operations. Indeed, the very best laid plans are not enough to prepare one for every conceivable negative outcome. If there is a single factor that one can safely rely upon it’s the notion that the more complicated or sophisticated technology-based system are, the more frequently they will break down. Having a disaster recovery plan in place when all else fails is key to long-term survival in the market.