Yes, I am lifelong tech geek and I actually asked that question. I am always talking to businesses about whether or not they need to invest in new technology. One of the reasons businesses give for wanting to upgrade is that the equipment is “old”. Well so am I but I still work just fine!

The reality is that for many tasks the technology 5-6 years ago is still absolutely adequate for the tasks that they were originally purchased for. While it is true that some software titles require more horsepower as they add often unneeded features most applications will continue to run for years on the current equipment a business has. I have one client still running an accounting application that is 12 years old and is still running on the same server it was originally installed on.

Does that mean that you should always run a piece of technology into the ground, or not buy the latest tech gadget like smartphones, tablets or faster WiFi connections? The answer of course is no. The correct approach is to objectively review currently available technology options and determine if there is a business case for upgrading.

Many times an upgrade may only be some additional memory, or upgrading to two monitors to increase a knowledge worker’s productivity. Changes that do not disrupt but provide added value. I see many businesses buying ink jet printers when they should be buying laser printers because their printing needs do not dictate the extras cost of printing black and white pages on an ink jet.

When it comes to embracing new technology like portable computing devices, tablets, smartphones, ultrabooks, etc. you have to look at your business processes and see how these new devices can enhance existing procedures, or can create new opportunities. Because they are so many options available you need to carefully research your options and if necessary engage the services of a professional to help you navigate through the myriad of options.

A recent study by Fasthost in the UK provided the folllowing insights:

  • For 1 in 3 firms, implementing new business technology such as smartphones, notepads and computer software, has failed to improve efficiencies
  • Only 1 in 4 SMEs seeks advice from an IT professional.
  • Only 1 in 10 firms disappointed with a piece of technology has gone back to their technology supplier or IT advisor to ask for help.

To read the entire press release follow the link below.

Press Release – Fasthosts Urges Small Firms to Work More Closely with Their Tech Suppliers