How your IT problems impact your business

“My PC is running slow again”

It’s a familiar conversation in offices across the world. The solution may be a reboot, or it might be a call to your IT support provider. It may be just be dismissed as moaning. But if it’s happening a lot it could be having a huge impact on your business.

How a slow computer impacts your customer

Imagine a scenario where your customer calls you requiring an order to be processed quickly. They get through to your customer service department but the operator is having problems with their computer. Your member of staff is doing their best, but it’s taking an age. Eventually they write down the order details and tell the customer they’ll call them back when it’s done. They reboot the computer, which seems to help, so they process the order and call the customer back to confirm everything has gone through.

It’s not the worst situation in the world. The order was made, and it just took a quick reboot. However, think about the impression this leaves on your customer. They needed something urgently, they had to sit on the phone whilst your business failed to do what they asked, then wait not knowing if the order was being processed, then be around for another phone call.

This could have a knock on affect for their business. They may have to go back to their customer and tell them that they are waiting on their supplier. They don’t want that conversation. If this happens repeatedly then they are likely to start looking for a more reliable supplier.

That slow computer isn’t an IT problem. It’s a business problem. This is how IT problems impact your business. It’s directly affecting your ability to deliver your service to your customer.

Think about this……

If a member of staff was constantly taking double the time needed to complete each task, and making life difficult for your clients they would probably be replaced pretty quickly. Yet people hang on to slow computers for years without replacing them, or getting to the root cause of that slowness.

It’s affecting your staff too….

There is a famous quote from Richard Branson: “Clients do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of the clients.”

In the scenario above how do you think the employee feels? Would they be annoyed that you, as a business, are not supplying them with the tools and support required to do their job?

This is increasingly a massive problem from employers.

Workfronts 7th Annual State of Work Report revealed:

  • The day-to-day impact of outdated or irrelevant technology on the UK workforce results in people feeling less productive (45%), more stressed (33%), and unable to take on new tasks (36%).
  • In February 2020 one-in-five (21%) workers said they had already quit a job because workplace technology made their roles more difficult, and this rose to nearly a third (32%) by the end of the year—implying that workers have left secure jobs during the pandemic to escape the challenges of poor technology.
  • The number of people who turned down a job because the technology was out of date or hard to use rose by 18%, while the number of digital workers who reported applying for a job because they heard a company’s employees use great technology increased by 16%, compared with pre-pandemic data.

This is another example of how IT problems impact your business. Poor technology impacts your staff. This in turn impacts your customers.

Don’t Think About Your IT, Think About Your Business

You can see how even simple IT problems impact your business. When we meet with potential new clients we spend a lot of time talking about their business. That it because we need to understand what the business wants to achieve. Only then can talk about the right technology for the business.

As you work through the next week, or the next month, think about the issues your business has. Not the IT issues, the business issues. Do you have high staff turnover? High customer churn? Low customer satisfaction ratings? Is staff productivity lower than you’d expect? Do you think you should be more efficient? Do you think you should be more profitable?

If your IT company is not already talking to you about these issues, tell them. They WILL be able to help. Replacing old hardware could well reduce staff turnover, and lower customer churn. Better use of the software you already pay for could increase productivity, and lower costs. You should be investing in your IT, guided by your provider. And as with any investment you need to understand the return on that investment.

This might need a rethink on how you consider IT. If you simply treat it as a cost, you’ll see no return.

Of course technology is not a silver bullet. It’s not going to solve all your issues overnight. But simply put, really good businesses run on the right technology, and get the most from it.

Got Business Problems You Want To Discuss?

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