Having the right IT devices and software can help your business become more competitive. Before you can reach your goals, though, you have to decide which specific hardware and software suits your company’s needs.

Ask the following questions so you can determine what products will move your company forward.

Do You Understand Your Company’s Technology Needs?

IT devices and software are tools that you can use to address your business’s pain points. If you don’t know what technology your company needs, then you can’t choose options that will improve your business processes.

Ideally, you want technology that addresses as many of your pain points as possible. If you’re not certain about your company’s technology needs, ask yourself:

  • What’s the biggest problem that prevents your company from reaching its goals?
  • What tasks take up the most time during your day?
  • What problems have managers and employees raised repeatedly?

Related: Are Managed IT Services Right for Your Business?

Knowing the answers to these questions will help you understand what new technology your business needs. For instance, if your employees complain that they find it difficult to collaborate on projects, then you may want to find collaboration software that helps them work together more efficiently.

Have You Talked to Managers and Employees About Their Ideas?

From your office, your company may seem like it runs smoothly. When you get into the trenches, though, you discover that the business only functions well because your managers and employees are working tirelessly to finish projects.

Since you don’t know what your managers and employees experience daily, you should talk to them about the types of technology they want to use.

Related: The Basics of IT Infrastructure for SMBs

There’s a good chance that your team members will know what makes their days harder. That doesn’t necessarily mean that they know what technological tools will make their jobs easier, though. If you need help deciding what IT devices and software will solve problems, you can talk to IT consultants who can:

  • Learn about your business’s background and current technological tools.
  • Review your internal processes to discover inefficiencies.
  • Talk to managers about specific solutions that they would like to see put in place.

How Much Money Have You Budgeted for Hardware and Software?

Budgeting always influences which IT devices and software companies choose. Some members of your IT team may want a high-performance server. Unless you have $40,000 to spend on a server, you can’t oblige that desire.

Related: 4 Business Benefits to Outsourcing Your IT Support

Having a limited budget doesn’t mean that you can’t improve your business’s technology, though. You always have options for upgrading or rebuilding your IT infrastructure. You may find that you can afford a rack server that offers most of the features that your business needs, or you may decide to move more of your software to the cloud so you can avoid the expense of purchasing new equipment.

Do You Have the Skills to Use the Hardware and Software?

Unless your business has a talented, experienced IT manager, you may not have the skills that you need to use advanced hardware and software. What’s the point of spending thousands of dollars on new networking equipment if you don’t have the skills to manage it? Without the right experience, you could lose money and create more inefficiencies in your business.

Many businesses thrive even though they don’t have IT, experts. Instead of hiring a new employee who understands how the latest IT devices and software work together, you can save money and make your business more competitive by outsourcing your needs to a team of professionals with experience in topics like IT support, network security, server solutions and backup and disaster recovery.

PCS International: Your Tech Pros

If you’re not sure what combination of devices and software will help your company, contact PCS International to get advice from experts who have helped other SMBs solve similar problems.