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Your first step is to conduct an IT/network audit to document the technologies you already have in place and how they match your goals.
You'll want to determine the strengths and shortcomings of your current systems and their relative importance to your business objectives.
For many companies, having the appropriate office technology can mean the difference between a successful expansion and one that falls flat on its face.
Managing technology and taking advantage of the opportunities it provides can prove daunting--particularly for small-business owners who lack an extensive budget and a dedicated IT department.
Businesses existed before there were computers, fax machines, telephones and copiers, but few entrepreneurs these days would want to try to grow a company without the advantages modern information technology can bring.
Merely having access to the internet--with its myriad opportunities for finding customers, building brands, researching suppliers and communicating with employees and others--can easily justify updating the technology in your office.
The smartest companies embrace a process for evaluating their technology goals and requirements before implementation.
The audit should cover the following areas: Technology is vital to your business, but that doesn't mean you always have to have the latest, greatest piece of equipment or software.
Ultimately, it's as much about vision--and developing a viable strategy--as it is about actual computing.
Too often, companies jump from one system or application to another but never realize the full benefit of their technology.
Without a defined strategy, they make poor buying decisions, adopt ineffective tools, and often experience a high level of frustration.
Businesses that excel typically establish technology strategies that help them gain a competitive advantage through cost savings, process improvements, faster time to market, and improved quality and service levels.