05 Feb IT Infrastructure Design and Installation: Guide for Company Executives
Businesses rely on technology more than ever. Unexpected downtime and insufficient system capacity can lead to significant costs for the organization. IT infrastructure design plays an important role in how your business functions on a daily basis and the opportunities for scaling in the future.
Infrastructure Strategic Planning
A custom “from the ground up” plan is an essential part of designing an IT infrastructure that supports your business goals. This approach creates an infrastructure that aligns closely with the organization and the strategic decisions that you’ll make. A customized IT infrastructure plan will eliminate waste by choosing the best technology that provides measurable results and ROI. There are three important areas to consider during your infrastructure planning.
1. How Well the IT Infrastructure Serves the Needs of the Business
What are your essential business needs and how can technology support them? Each organization has unique requirements, so this process is not as simple as using the same types of solutions as other businesses in your industry. Technology should support your overall mission rather than getting in the way.
2. How the Infrastructure Maximizes Productivity of Its Workers
The solutions selected need to provide employees with essential resources for accomplishing their daily job duties. If the infrastructure is difficult to work with, your staff may not fully adopt it.
When technology helps workers maximize their productivity, they can complete tasks faster and improve their satisfaction with the job environment. The infrastructure supports this reality by operating reliably and securely. Training resources and change management ensure that your employees use these solutions so you get the best possible ROI.
3. How Scalable the Infrastructure is as the Company Grows
You don’t know exactly where your business is going to be in five or ten years. While forecasting provides you with some insights, your market could shift unexpectedly. New technology opens up the possibility of different business models and opportunities that are currently unforeseen.
The IT infrastructure needs to account for these changes. When you create a plan based around your predicted and potential growth rates, you can react quickly to the unexpected. For example, you may choose to use cloud-based solutions for your content delivery network so scaling up only takes a few clicks. You can also look for solutions that have robust integration options. While a particular piece of software may not have all the future features you need, APIs and powerful development kits give you flexible options.
Routine Upgrades and Maintenance of the Infrastructure
The initial IT infrastructure planning is only the first step. The technology world changes on a regular basis, so you need a way to keep up with this business landscape.
Routine upgrades and maintenance benefits your organization in several ways:
- Introduces new productivity enhancing features: Ongoing software and hardware development can lead to improved methods of handling business processes.
- Improves the lifespan of equipment: Hardware can run into operational issues that impact its effective lifespan. If the data center has insufficient climate control or it’s used in a way that’s outside of its recommended parameters, it can lead to sudden failure. Maintenance catches these issues before they disrupt your infrastructure.
- Reduces cybersecurity risks: Cyber threats can change overnight. Outdated software and firmware represent prime targets for cyber criminals. Routine upgrades patch vulnerabilities and limit the opportunities for data breaches.
- Optimizes performance: The systems can improve over time as you experiment with the right hardware and software combination for your organization. The IT staff also get more familiar with these solutions, which can lead to better optimization.
- Proactively addresses problem areas: Small problems don’t always stay small. If maintenance happens infrequently, then it can lead to costly fixes. By covering these issues ahead of time, you avoid this scenario entirely. Fixes happen in the background and may not lead to any downtime at all.
- Keeps operating expenses low: A better return on investment and choosing the right infrastructure for the company reduces waste in the IT budget. You can use the freed up funds for other important projects.
The Importance of an End-to-End Service Provider
Building your IT infrastructure from the ground up along with ongoing maintenance requires specialized resources. Your current IT team may have their days already filled up with support tickets, deployments, application development, training and other critical job duties. If you pull everyone off of their current projects, then you could disrupt multiple areas of the business.
You can also run into issues with having the right mix of IT specialists. Someone who excels in their current area may not have the expertise to plan and execute a strategic IT infrastructure plan.
A Managed Service Provider, such as Proper Sky, complements your in-house IT team by handling this process from start to finish. They take a ground up approach to ensure that all of your business goals and requirements are considered before any technology is chosen.
Once the IT infrastructure is in place and functioning properly, the service provider shifts into monitoring and maintaining the network to minimize downtime and maximize employee efficiency and productivity.
Your company’s IT infrastructure forms the backbone of your operations. If it doesn’t fit with the organization’s needs or fails to grow with you, then it can hinder your potential for years to come. Strategic IT infrastructure planning gets it done correctly from the start.
Your Next Steps…
If you’re organization does not have the resources and expertise to properly design and install your IT infrastructure and you are interested in seeing what a Managed IT Company can do for you, consider scheduling a C-Level Workshop with our team here at Proper Sky. Our no-obligation C-Level workshop will allow you to walk out of the meeting with a complete understanding of your current IT infrastructure and how it affects your business business’ productivity and bottom line.
For more information on Managed IT Services and how they can help your business, please see our in-depth guide on Managed IT Services.