Businesses that are just starting out are generally on a shoestring budget, a fact that is even more pronounced in this dreary economic climate. Be that as it may, having a solid IT infrastructure is still a must, as everything in this digital age employs technology one way or another.
Having a plan for every aspect of your business is incredibly important, therefore having a strong IT infrastructure is the smartest thing to do. Starting a business is already very hard, so you need every bit of help you can get! The team here at ThunderQuote have come up with a modern IT infrastructure for your budding business.
Putting in place a dependable IT infrastructure doesn’t have to cost you a bomb, but it does require some detailed research on your part. Look up several IT support and services companies and inquire within for their charges for setting up IT infrastructures for businesses, and see which one gives you the best value for money.
Also remember to inquire about after-sales services and the availability of IT management services to save you the trouble of managing the infrastructure yourself (it can get quite tricky, especially if you don’t have the resources that are specially trained for this task).
Budget considerations aside, you’ll first have to know what are the systems and equipment that make up a modern IT infrastructure, as well as the dos and don’ts of the acquisition process. Read on to know what are the ‘must-haves’ to not only get your business up and running, but to keep it running smoothly!
Computer hardware can take up a big chunk of your business budget, so it’s only natural to weigh your options carefully before investing in it. The most basic requirement for a business is, of course, computers. With so many choices available in the market today, it can be quite a daunting task to select the right computers for your business, especially if you are not well-versed in computer specifications.
This is where an IT services company could be of great help. They would be able to advise you on the type of computer that is suited to your business operations (e.g. a desktop, laptop or tablet); the best specifications that would ensure efficiency (e.g. processor speed, memory, etc.); and the brand of hardware that best fits your budget and business operations. The Apple iMac 27-inch, Dell OptiPlex 24 7000 series, and the Dell Precision Tower 3000 series are touted as among the best desktops available for 2017.
Also, you may want to consider getting both PCs (which run on the Windows platform) and iMacs (which run on the Mac OS) to cover all bases when it comes to operational needs. Sticking to just one platform can be detrimental to your business in the event of a virus attack, so it’s best to play safe from the outset.
Next, you will need a server with the capacity to handle the data requirements of your business. A business will no doubt have several computers on a network and as such, will need a server for storage purposes. You will need to determine how many computers are in use at one time so as not to overload the server. A good IT services company should be able to advise you on the type of server that best meets your business and budget requirements, and is scalable enough to handle your growing business needs. Remember that when dealing with data, it’s imperative to have a backup so at the very least, you will require two servers: one for daily use, and one for backups.
Of course, you could just forego the need for servers in place of cloud computing software, seeing as cloud computing is fast gaining ground as the way forward for all modern businesses. Cloud computing negates the need for expensive data centers, consequently improving your company’s mobility, teamwork, output and profits. It also negates the need for a big office space to store bulky servers, saving you a substantial sum on transport and real estate fees. You can rest assured that your data is secure, and easily shared and stored across platforms.
An Efficient Computer Network
All hardware within an office space needs to be connected for the business to run smoothly. Imagine having to fork out thousands every month for your internet services if you didn’t have a network that allows for sharing a single broadband connection across multiple workstations. Think of all the problems that could arise if you are unable to share, send and receive files.
Also, how troublesome would it be if only one workstation was connected to the only printer in the office? Networking is such a big part of business IT infrastructure that to disregard its importance would be akin to neglecting your business entirely. So, have your IT services company install a reliable network for your office and remember to put in place IT management services to maintain the network and provide IT support or troubleshooting services if that’s the last thing you do!
Once you’ve got your hardware down and confirmed, you’ll need to focus on the operating system next. Windows is, of course, the most ubiquitous of all operating systems available in the market today and is therefore, easily available. It’s generally a good choice as most businesses have use for the Microsoft Office Suite (productivity software such as Excel Word and PowerPoint), and because most companies use it, there is no possibility of documents being unreadable as a result of compatibility issues.
However, it’s really not a must to stick to just the Windows operating system. Other software choices such as the Linux Ubuntu, Solaris and Mac OS X can do the job just as well. And these days, all operating systems are primed to ensure that you can operate within multiple platforms, so there should be no compatibility issues arising. Consult your IT services company on selecting the best software that meets your business needs, and remember to also appoint a good IT support company to provide the necessary support and troubleshooting services.
It would also be a big help if you carry out your due diligence and read up about each operating system to understand their respective functions and capabilities before deciding on a particular one. The operating system you decide on will determine how you conduct business, so the more thorough your research, the better.
Reliable Communications System
Every business requires a phone system for connectivity and communication purposes. Regardless of whether you go with old-school desk telephones or opt for the mobility of cell phones, it’s important to take into consideration the operational needs of your staff. Even in this digital age where the use of online chats, texts, and video calls is pervasive, modern businesses still consider standard phone communication capabilities as a key part of a company’s IT infrastructure. Have your appointed IT services company recommend a good telephony system and service provider for your consideration.
You would also want to include an internet service package that fits your budget. A slow internet connection is the bane of any business that conducts a large part of their operations online. There really is no excuse not to invest in a data package that sufficiently covers your business needs. A strong internet connection ensures fast data transfer capabilities and the ability to access customer data and work files quickly. For most businesses, this determines whether your business succeeds or tanks, so be sure to put your money where it’s worth it!
There are a million things that go into creating the best IT infrastructure for a new business. So many choices around and you definitely need to gather the best working parts for your company. Fret not and look for a great professional to help you out because making a mistake with this might cost you a lot more in the future!
ThunderQuote is the most comprehensive business services portal in Singapore, Australia and ASEAN , where hundreds of thousands of dollars of procurement contracts are sourced every month by major companies like Singapore Press Holdings, National Trade Union Congress and more.