12 September 2023
A Guide to Getting the Right IT Setup for Your Business
A well-structured IT environment serves as the backbone of contemporary business operations. As the landscape of work evolves, particularly with the increasing prevalence of remote work arrangements, the demand for dependable hardware, seamless communication tools, and efficient internet connectivity has taken centre stage. In this article we’ll explore essential components of the right IT setup, covering everything from remote work solutions to maintaining a productive boardroom and ensuring connectivity on the go.
1. Remote Working
Remote work has firmly established itself as an integral component of the modern business landscape. To ensure the optimal performance of your remote workforce, it’s important to invest in a suite of tools and technologies. Secure Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) provide a safe gateway for remote employees to access company resources, while cloud-based collaboration platforms like Microsoft Teams facilitate seamless communication and project management, regardless of physical location. In addition to these software solutions, consider hardware investments that enhance the remote work experience. Equipping remote employees with high-quality laptops or desktop computers ensures they have the necessary computing power to handle their tasks efficiently.
2. Hardware Performance and Fit
Selecting the right hardware is essential for meeting your business goals and ensuring that technology complements your objectives. It’s important to match the performance of computers, laptops, and other devices with your employees’ needs, considering factors like processing power, memory, and storage capacity. The choice of monitors and screens also plays a significant role in your IT setup. Investing in high-resolution displays with adjustable stands can enhance employee comfort and productivity, reducing eye strain and allowing for ergonomic adjustments. Moreover, ergonomic peripherals like keyboards and mice can further contribute to employee well-being and efficiency.
3. Video Setup
Clear and effective communication is essential in the digital age, and having the right setup to accommodate diverse meeting scenarios is crucial. Equip your employees with quality webcams, headsets, and screens. High-definition webcams and noise-cancelling headsets can enhance video conferencing experiences, while larger screens can improve productivity and offer a more immersive and clear view of digital content, presentations, and discussions.
4. VoIP and Cloud Phone Systems
Cloud phone systems, such as VoIP solutions like Microsoft Teams, are pivotal for facilitating seamless communication. These platforms encompass a range of features, including video conferencing, call forwarding, and voicemail, that enhance connectivity and collaboration. To ensure uninterrupted communication, it’s crucial to confirm that your network can adequately handle the bandwidth requirements of VoIP and other cloud phone systems.
5. The Ultimate Boardroom Setup
A well-equipped boardroom goes beyond just furniture and aesthetics; it’s a strategic asset for fostering effective communication and collaboration. Consider investing in large, high-resolution displays and integrated control systems that ensure everyone can clearly view presentations and participate in discussions. Alongside this, deploy reliable video conferencing systems to bridge the gap between remote and in-person participants.
For employees frequently on the go, portable battery banks are essential companions. They serve as lifelines, ensuring that devices remain charged and fully functional even in the absence of traditional power sources. Moreover, it’s equally vital to equip them with the necessary connectors, adaptors, and cables to effortlessly connect to TVs and projectors for presentations. These small yet critical accessories empower your employees to seamlessly deliver their ideas, ensuring that their presentations are not hindered by technical hiccups. Additionally, a laser pointer can be a handy tool, providing them with the means to navigate their presentations with precision and professionalism.
7. Internet Performance
A reliable, high-speed internet connection is the backbone that supports your daily operations, and its importance extends far beyond mere convenience. Investing in robust, business-grade internet services is a proactive measure that pays dividends in terms of stability and bandwidth. Such services are designed with the specific needs of businesses in mind, offering the reliability required to avoid potential connectivity disruptions. Whether you’re relying on cloud phone systems, data-heavy applications, or seamless online collaboration, fast, realiable internet ensures that you can meet these demands without missing a beat.
8. WiFi Coverage and Performance
With numerous devices dependent on wireless connections, ensuring an optimal WiFi network is imperative. From mobile phones and tablets to laptops, smart TVs, CCTV systems, and even kitchen appliances, your WiFi network experiences significant demand. To ensure reliable connectivity and to mitigate issues such as over-saturation and dead zones, it’s crucial to understand the specific requirements of your environment. Consider the number of devices and the potential bandwidth needed. Additionally, consider potential sources of interference, like walls, metal structures, glass, and overlapping frequencies.
9. Internet on the Road
For regular travellers, having built-in mobile broadband in their notebooks can be a game-changer. It offers a reliable and secure connection without the need to rely on public Wi-Fi, making it the go to choice for those frequently on the road. Occasional travellers, on the other hand, might find value in using mobile hotspots. These can be provided by the company or used through personal mobile data plans. This approach ensures they have a dependable connection when needed, without the commitment of built-in mobile broadband.
It’s imperative to emphasise that when accessing any company or sensitive personal data, employees should steer clear of public Wi-Fi networks. This precautionary measure helps safeguard against potential security risks and data breaches, ensuring that sensitive information always remains protected.
10. Hot Desks
Hot desking is fast a becoming a trend in modern workplaces, heralding flexibility and adaptability within office settings. To embrace this concept fully and ensure a seamless transition for employees shifting between workstations, it’s crucial to equip hot desk spaces with the necessary hardware, including docking stations and essential peripherals. This facilitates effortless laptop connectivity, promoting efficient work, regardless of the chosen seat.
11. Docking Stations
Docking stations prove invaluable for employees who regularly transition between mobile and office-based work. These essential devices simplify the transition process by seamlessly connecting laptops to peripherals like keyboards, mice, monitors, and other accessories. This integration not only enhances productivity but also provides a consistent and comfortable work environment, ensuring that employees can easily transition from their mobile work mode to a fully equipped office setup.
12. Asset Register
Maintaining an up-to-date asset register is a foundational practice for efficient IT management. It allows businesses to track the performance and lifespan of their IT equipment accurately. To ensure uninterrupted operations and prevent employee dissatisfaction caused by outdated technology, it’s prudent to plan and execute hardware refresh cycles before equipment nears the end of its productive life. This proactive approach not only minimises downtime but also demonstrates your commitment to providing employees with the tools they need to excel in their roles.
Getting the right IT setup for your business is a decision that warrants careful consideration and expert advice. By investing in the right hardware, ensuring strong connectivity, and supporting remote work, you can position your business for success in an increasingly digital world. Stay proactive, and regularly assess and update your IT infrastructure to stay ahead of the curve and remain competitive in your industry.