Business growth is good, and certainly better than the alternative. Growth comes with its own unique set of challenges, however, especially with regards to managing and maintaining technology.
IT Challenges in Fast-Growing Companies
It’s easy for a company to become overwhelmed by the tech demands of newfound growth. If your company is fortunate enough to find itself on a high-growth curve, here some challenges you may be facing.
Managing Growing Technology Needs
The more a company grows, the more technology equipment it will need. New hires need computers, monitors, printers, phones, and more. The company network may need to be expanded with additional switches, cabling, and other hardware. This new hardware and infrastructure needs to be purchased, configured, and maintained. It can be a significant undertaking.
How and where does a company purchase all this new equipment? Who does the setup, maintenance, and training? It’s a challenge for companies of any size, especially those experiencing rapid growth.
Among the most important needs of new employees is communication with coworkers. Simple, efficient communication systems can make or break a new hire’s onboarding experience. A traditional business phone system may be sufficient for small or stagnant companies, but rapid growth can be better accommodated with a VoIP system. VoIP systems are more easily expandable to accommodate new extensions, ring groups, and the other demands necessitated by company expansion. (According to a Global Market Insights report, SMB use of VoIP systems is expected to grow by 15% by 2025.)
Dealing with a Remote Workforce
Growing companies also need to adapt to the challenges of an increasingly remote workforce. Remote workers—new and existing—need to communicate and collaborate with other employees regardless of location. They’ll also need to access key data from remote locations, which argues for moving data storage from individual computers onto a server or into the cloud.
Keeping Up with Growing Employment Rolls
Often, internal IT people and teams have trouble keeping up with the rapid addition of new staff common with fast-growing companies. A Gallup poll found that 88% of new hires feel their new employers did a poor job of onboarding. An understaffed or overburdened internal IT department will have trouble bringing a bunch of new employees up to speed on time.
Planning for Business Growth
To meet these challenges— and maintain a rapid growth rate—the IT team in an expanding company needs to proactively plan for growth, whether it’s expected or sudden.
Budget for Growth
To accommodate a company’s growing technology needs, leadership must budget accordingly. The budget should include preparations for new equipment purchases, software licenses for new hires, and additional IT resources to manage all the new technology.
As mentioned above, an internal IT person or team is likely to struggle to keep up in rapid-growth scenarios. That’s especially true for companies relying on “tech savvy” people with other primary responsibilities.
If your company is experiencing rapid growth, it’s time to consider bringing in outside help for your IT needs. Outsourcing IT management makes it easier to accommodate both planned and unplanned growth, because the outside company is responsible for supplying the necessary staff and can more easily scale with growth. Besides, this type of outsourcing typically costs less than trying to expand the company’s internal IT staff.
Outsourcing IT management can mean turning over all of your IT needs to an outside company, but it can also mean simply supplementing your existing team. CDS provides both full-stack technology support solutions and supplemental support for existing IT departments.
Build Out the Technology
The company’s technology backbone needs to be scaled to keep pace with the growth of the rest of the company. That means:
- Having adequate numbers of computers and printers ready for new hires
- A more powerful network that can support large numbers of new & existing users
- Increasing server and file-sharing capabilities to handle increased data loads
- More Internet bandwidth to handle the increased traffic from the larger employee and customer base
- Improving and/or expanding Wi-Fi coverage to handle both new employees and larger facilities (adding or upgrading access points)
- Enhanced security to protect the network and digital assets from growing numbers of inexperienced users
Outsourcing some or all these technology needs to an outside company may be the easiest and most cost-effective way to go in a rapidly growing business environment.
Outsource IT Needs
The ultimate solution for many growing companies struggling with their tech needs is to call a technology solutions provider, such as CDS. This company will worry about hiring the right people, procuring and providing the right equipment, and offering the right services. An outside company can handle rapid growth cheaper and better than most internal IT departments because they employ a full-time team of well-trained, well-educated, and experienced tech workers to meet their clients’ technology needs. These services typically cost considerably less than what a company would spend on building a comparable IT department in-house.
Partner with CDS to Navigate Your Business Growth
CDS Office Technologies has been serving fast-growing businesses throughout Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, and Missouri for nearly 50 years. Our experienced staff can help you work through your technology issues and plan for your company’s growth. CDS is here to handle all your IT and office technology needs. Contact CDS Office Technologies today to plan for your business growth tomorrow.