Making the right IT decisions are hard, even for IT experts. That’s because there are so many hardware and software packages to consider. Within these packages, there is a tremendous amount of overlap and duplication. It can be hard to know which feature-set provides the most value for your needs at any given time.
Then there is the challenge of knowing whether to get just the right amount of IT solutions for today, or spring for more than you need in anticipation for what might be coming in the future. Since no one knows exactly what the future holds, this can be a dicey proposition at best. While there is no full-proof method of making perfect IT choices, here are three tips that should help you avoid some of the pitfalls:
Hire a Consultant
Even if you have a full-time IT staffer, there are many areas where their expertise will not sufficiently cover your needs. That is because information technology is not just about the technology, but the information. And your business likely covers a broad range of information that is not exactly covered in computer science classes.
For this, you need more than a tech guy. You need technology selection management to walk you through such IT choices including:
Whether you use live consultants, or consultancy software, you are going to need some help choosing the right IT solutions for the various aspects of you business.
Understand the Different Software Versions
One of the 4 things you need to know about Windows 10 is that there are multiple configurations of the software. Many IT packages are even more confusing than the base operating system on which you choose to run them.
Do you need the pro version, or the enterprise? One features remote desktop and group policy management. The other adds AppLocker and Windows-To-Go Creator. If you are not familiar with these features, it will take you a half a day of study to completely wrap your mind around what they do. It is a half a day worth taking. Whether you are evaluating Adobe CS, or payroll solutions, you need to take the time to understand the different versions of the software you are evaluating.
Know When to Compromise
One life lesson applicable to all kinds of situations is don’t sacrifice the good for the perfect. This aphorism is both a recognition and a reminder that nothing is perfect. When spending a lot of money for something complicated, we often raise the bar much too high. We demand perfection from our IT solutions when perfection has never been on offer.
What is needed is a clearer perspective. There is no single perfect piece of hardware or software that is going to cover everything you need. Rather than go for a perfect, all-in-one solution, you might need to consider a few purpose-driven applications that do one or two things very well.
The unfortunate truth is that even if you do everything right, you are going to make a few IT missteps, some of them might be pretty big. But you can minimize your errors by bringing in a consultant when needed, understanding the various software versions, and knowing when to compromise where compromise makes sense.