Are You Putting Your Construction Firm At Risk With Outdated Hardware?

Hanging on to clearly outdated and ineffective technology might be cost-effective, but it comes with a range of challenges and pain points you may not be aware of. Is old technology holding you back?

Putting Your Construction Firm At Risk With Outdated Hardware

Any firm, regardless of the size, will face many challenges. Whether it’s a strict deadline, harsh industry regulations or aggressive competition, the construction industry will always offer its share of difficulties.

Despite being so crucial to a firm’s bottom line, one challenge that is often overlooked is IT. Specifically, the ongoing maintenance of its lifecycle.

Manchester Construction Firm Operating With Outdated Hardware

Is Your Technology Too Old?

You know when a backhoe or a crane is past its prime – can you say the same of the business technology you use?

There are many subtle (and some not so subtle) signs that it may be time to upgrade your technology:

  • Newer Versions Have Been Released: While the mere existence of a newer OS or new model in the line-up doesn’t mean you should automatically upgrade, it is an indication that you will have to do so sometime soon. When a newer version is released, it means the clock is running out on how long the providers will continue to support the version you’re using.
  • Your Competitors Are Leaving You Behind: You may be noticing that your competitors have far surpassed your capabilities and are able to provide clients with features and products that you are unable to offer. If you are finding it hard to keep up with your competitors, it might be time to consider how new technology can enhance the work you do.
  • You’re Paying For Short Term Fixes: The older technology gets, the more support it will need. That means paying more and more for support to come in and get it running again, the returns on which will quickly diminish.

Old Technology Will Cost You

If your old tech is working so poorly that it stops you and your crew from working, then it’s time to replace it. The downtime caused by old hardware isn’t worth the money you’re saving by hanging on to it.

Whether you agree or not, it’s a fact – Ponemon Institute estimates that every minute of even partial downtime can cost as much as $5,600.

The main cost of downtime is not the fix itself, it’s the halt in your firm’s’ productivity. If an IT-related or natural disaster occurs and takes critical systems offline, employees will be unable to complete their tasks, yet your normal business expenses will carry on.

The economy of downtime is unforgiving – it grinds your firm to a halt, racks up expenses, and keeps you from getting anything done.

  • Expense Vs. Revenue: During downtime, you incur all the expenses of running a firm without the revenue you would usually generate.
  • Loss of Focus: Even if downtime does not grind everything to a halt, some of your staff will have to divert themselves from their normal work to mitigate the problem – again reducing productivity.
  • Affected Service Delivery: Furthermore, while your systems are down, you can’t deliver services or sell products to current and potential new clients.
  • Cost Of Repair: However you approach fixing the problem, it’ll cost time and money.

Three Questions To Answer About Your IT

1. Does Your Hardware Function Properly?

As step number 1, it doesn’t get much easier than this:

  • Can you turn it on?
  • How long does it take to start up?
  • How long does it take to execute tasks like opening applications?

In a nutshell, you need to know whether your hardware is holding you back, making you wait, and slowing your firm down.

2. Is The Software Up To Date?

Now that you’ve determined how functional the hardware is, the next step is the software. Even if this technology hasn’t been turned on in a week, there will likely be some updates that have to take place.

Updates are important because they correct existing errors and mistakes in software, and patch potential flaws that could leave it vulnerable to security threats.

One by one, open up each program you would plan to use on a regular basis. If there are updates that need to be installed, a pop-up window will likely open on start-up. However, if the previous owner turned off that automatic function, you’ll need to manually check for updates, which can be done in the program preferences.

3. What Is The Status Of Licenses And Warranties?

After double-checking that everything is up to date, the next step will be to confirm the status of any existing licenses and warranties.

Depending on the type of firm, there may be specific software needed for daily operations. The bottom line is that if you need it to get work done, you should know whether you can use it.

There are a variety of reasons why you may decide to hold off on making a major upgrade to your technology, such as the cost and hassle. However, avoiding the issue for too long will do more harm than good, and will affect your productivity, security, and ability to get work done.

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