Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Are Your IT Systems Making Your People Less Productive?

If your business is ever to achieve its full potential, it needs to be productive. It must figure out how to get the best from its people, while using IT to support them in their work.

There are all kinds of things you can do to support increased productivity, from increasing natural light to allowing flexible working. You could allow people to bring their dog to work, or give people the occasional ‘duvet day’. But at the core of every business, the IT systems are key to realising your employees’ full potential, and that should be the first thing you examine.

Why IT enables productivity

Every business has processes, and it has IT to support those processes. If there are problems with the systems, it’s going to be more and more difficult for people to do their job. In an ideal world, there’s a state of perfect equilibrium where every part of the business supports everything else. Sadly, many businesses are failing to reach this state, even though they look fairly healthy from the outside.

The most extreme system problem is downtime, which will bring any critical service to a halt. Naturally, it will take the rest of the business down with it. Yet there are far more subtle system problems that can quietly chip away at your bottom line.

If you have an old Windows server running terribly out of date software, you might be wasting money on legacy IT that no longer earns its keep. You could be wasting money on duplicated work in your CRM system, simply because you can’t integrate its data with anything else. Your sales team might be struggling to keep in touch with the office, when all you really need is a new VoIP phone system to replace your PBX.

Your people expect more

Cloud computing is changing the way we live, work and relax. People expect to be able to go to work and use the same technology they have at home. If you haven’t transformed your systems and adopted cloud innovations, your employees are either going to stall on the job, or they’re going to create their own workarounds.

Neither of these situations is ideal for a growing business. If you provide cloud tools that facilitate collaboration and agility, you can expect to see significant productivity gains. If you don’t, you’re going to fall behind competitors who are already using those systems. The problem is compounded when people start using unapproved systems at work, because then you lose all control over the data you’ve worked so hard to secure.

Positive changes

If you identify gaps in your current systems, it’s important to have a strategy for their replacement. All too often, businesses rush in to cloud adoption, only to find they have a bunch of solutions that can’t be integrated properly. The key is to align your systems and processes as closely as possible, and use technology as a way to help your people be more efficient.

At OneFit, we’re passionate about the power of integration. We’ve seen the amazing results that digital transformation can achieve. If it’s time to support better productivity and bring about a positive change, contact us to find out how our scalable solutions will help.