The pandemic changed the business world with its massive disruption. Work was disrupted, and many profits were lost because of the crippling crisis brought on by the lack of going out. But the economy didn’t completely crash, and work still progressed, thanks to a lot of modern technology. Those companies that were hit the hardest were behind in the tech department, and the post-COVID world gives them a chance to catch up. Here are some essential upgrades that will ensure that your business will be competitive as the world recovers.
Upgrade Software and Hardware
If you have been hesitating on upgrading your company’s software and hardware, the post-COVID period is the perfect time to do so. A lot of modern business software requires some robust technical requirements. It is a good business policy to update your hardware and software for desktops and laptops every four years. For servers, a seven-year cycle is a bit more useful. Starting a schedule of updates helps control spending, so you can budget for it in the future.
Making Teleworking Official
The pandemic blindsided many businesses that were dependent on their employees coming to the office. Without employees coming in, they were limited in their productivity. This need highlighted the importance of allowing for telework ability. Fortunately, a lot of companies were able to implement some form of remote working. However, a lot of these were simply cobbled together operations with e-mail and other apps. It showed how difficult it is to make remote work functional. Now that your company has time to make things official, it is time to work on setting up a remote work policy that works for both employers and employees.
Finally Move to the Cloud
The cloud has been a major buzzword in business for some time now. Before the pandemic hit, many companies were in the middle of moving to the cloud or deciding whether to do so. With the increased need for easy access to data, moving should be the obvious choice. The most significant move would be moving the company’s database. While many cloud operations make it a lot easier to manage, there is still a need for some database management. This is mainly in the security and compliance departments. This might require some refresher database administrator training for your employees so that they can properly manage the data.
Implement a Virtual Private Network (VPN) for Security
With all the traffic your business is doing over the internet, there is a considerable risk your security might have holes in it. This is especially true if your employees use public internet access. Open internet access makes a company vulnerable to hackers who can worm in and affect company operations or steal data. Using a virtual private network can solve that. Business VPNs allow employees to connect directly to the company’s servers in an isolated manner so that their remote traffic is not exposed to outsiders. Implementing this might require your company to set up a separate server or even issue employees with personal client software so that they can access the network. Implementing this smoothly can be a challenge since there are issues like latency and compatibility to consider.
Start E-commerce Operations
The pandemic has made it obvious the importance of an e-commerce storefront for a lot of businesses. While a lot of retail stores were closed, online stores were still making brisk sales. If your company lost out on those online profits, you need to correct that by opening your e-commerce operations. Fortunately, there are several platforms out there that can make this simple for you. They can provide you with a storefront and a payment provider so that you will only have to provide the products. However, besides the digital component, there is also the logistics of direct sales to customers. Making it work will include arranging from receiving the order to shipping it out.
Aim for Future-proofing
COVID-19 was a big challenge that no one saw coming. But some companies were prepared because they were looking towards the future instead of the status quo. If you don’t want to get blindsided again, then doing some future-proofing can be a big help. Look at upcoming technologies and see what works for your industry.
All these upgrades don’t just make your business processes better. They are also there to ensure that if something like COVID-19 happens again, your business will be ready to handle it. Investing in these upgrades ensures that your company would have continuity and function even during the worst of times. This is worth the money you spend on all the upgrades.