Small creative agencies succeed because they do great work and serve their customers well. As the marketing and advertising industries change, technology is less about extravagance and more about ensuring proper support as you focus on your goals. As more and more industries enter the high-tech future, small business leaders must understand when and how their devices are supporting their work and also where they’re holding back progress.
Hurdles to creating that next big idea can be deadly for small creative firms and many other types of businesses. If device headaches are creating or amplifying those hurdles, it’s time to take action. Take a look at the catalysts for upgrading your business technology, identify a timeline to handle them, and decide which hardware purchases will prove to be your best investments.
Identify Catalysts for Upgrades
Tech headaches often sneak up on larger companies, but small firms run tight ships. Productivity is essential, and you'll notice if it slips. Take stock of your biggest pain points, whether it's faster than expected growth or a big change in your market. Here are a few to watch out for:
- Rapid business growth. If your creative agency acquires new clients, hires new team members, and takes on additional projects, it’s a sign to reassess your technology situation. Ensure your clients’ satisfaction, empower your employees, and potentially increase profits with upgraded technology.
- Accounting woes. As business evolves, so must your financial management. Casual processes can quickly become out of control, but when you don’t have accounting staff, it’s up to business leaders to make solid bookkeeping a priority. Cloud-based tools like Quickbooks are on the rise among small businesses, and a powerful, secure device is essential to running them at full capacity.
- Changes in team member roles. When your team shifts its organization and responsibilities, it’s the perfect time to reassess your tech. If you need different technology to ensure easier team collaboration, upgraded security, or additional mobile devices, now is the time to do it.
Choose When to Make Tech Investments
Most small business owners have the same PC refresh strategy: run this computer until it dies. For creative firms, it's more important to have modern devices for client presentations and content creation. Most traditional refresh cycles recommend 3–5 years between upgrades. But if you have a small IT arsenal, choose the investment that will not only serve you best now, but will still be a smart choice in a year or two.
Take a proactive approach to technology purchasing. Plan to replace and upgrade a portion of your tech each year. This ensures all your devices don’t fail at the same time, and allows you to easily keep up with the latest and greatest industry advancements.
Determine Which Devices Move the Dial
When it's time to make a technology purchase, consider what's most important for its use. If the device will be used primarily for design, make sure the processing power can handle large files. If your president needs a new laptop and he or she manages all the client invoicing, you'd better be sure that device is secure. Be sure your device is reinforced with hardware and software security for holistic protection. If your computer is running Windows 10 with an Intel processor, you can be sure it’s ready to handle key small business demands.
Explore more about how a device upgrade could improve your bottom line. It’s your business, so it deserves the best technology available. And check out @IntelSmallBiz for more resources and tips to accelerate your business.