Virgo Martin, Sales and Marketing Director at Enablis, spends most of his time working with industry-leading IT decision makers. Today, he talks to us about the top five challenges facing IT Directors across Australia.
1) Balancing the day-to-day against big picture strategic thinking
IT Directors are being asked to step up and become more strategic as businesses recognise the vital role that technology plays in helping to transform the way they operate. However, these decision makers seldom have the capacity to act strategically and provide operational IT support across the entire business.
In my experience, smart IT decision makers outsource as much of the day-to-day management as possible, giving them more time to focus on the bigger picture. They do this by finding good partners who can help to lighten the load.
2) Finding the right IT partner for your business
There’s no hard and fast process for finding a service provider, and as a result, IT decision makers often struggle to find the right partner for their business. Word of mouth, desk research and even RFPs can form part of a thorough selection process, but a partner that looks great on paper may not be right for you.
Are they responsive to your needs and do they go above and beyond the call of duty before you’ve formally engaged them? Much like any relationship, a good partnership is based on chemistry, transparency, shared goals and mutual respect. Most importantly, you need to be certain they’ve got your back.
Meet their wider team; speak to their customers at length before signing a contract. Make sure you’re clear on how they handle situations when things go wrong as well as when it’s plain sailing.
3) Flexibility for the Future
Ambitious, optimistic businesses always plan for growth but unforeseen circumstances such an economic downturn or new competitors can often leave IT Directors stuck in contracts that don’t work for them.
Make sure you don’t get tied into a rigid long-term contract that doesn’t allow you to flex the number of sites, users, or services. Demand flexibility in your contract and make sure your provider is willing to give you what you need, and not just sell you what they’ve got.
4) Technology to transform the business
Many IT decision makers come unstuck when they select providers who don’t invest enough in cutting-edge technology. Even though IT services are often viewed as a commodity, working with a partner who can predict where the market is going can really help to transform your business.
There’s nothing worse than investing time and money in technology that becomes obsolete. Work with someone who has a strong reputation in delivering market-leading technology in data security, data centres and cloud-based services.
5) Making the most of the IT budget
IT budgets are generally flat or falling, whereas demand for high priority strategic initiatives is on the up. This means that IT Directors are under increasing pressure to achieve more with less, and a select few are able to rise to this challenge.
Work with IT partners who have demonstrable experience in helping IT departments deploy their budget and resources more effectively. Whether this means outsourcing the maintenance and management of your entire communications infrastructure or rolling out cloud-based services; work with a partner who can build a business case for you and back it up with hard numbers.
If you’d like to speak to us about how Enablis can help your business, please contact us on 02 8272 4000 or 03 8199 4147