This is the second in a series of articles outlining ways in which small and medium-sized businesses (SMB’s) can ensure that IT serves their business well through an Enterprise IT for SMB approach.
Last time we looked at serving your growth agenda by aligning IT with your business objectives and developing an IT Roadmap. Part 2 continues to address how to Manage Growth with topics on software selection and implementation.
Pick your Application Software Methodically
Unless you are in a very unique or a very new kind of business, the application software that you need is out there – there’s plenty of choice. And that can be a problem, so when it comes to choosing, follow a tried and tested process to reach the right decision. After all, your business is going to rely heavily on the system that you choose.
The IT world has developed very methodical processes for all sorts of different projects, having learned the hard way how easily things can get off track. So you owe it to yourself as an SMB to enjoy the fruits of that learning – and selecting application software is one process that is well developed. Here’s a link to a good example.
Have a professional manage your implementation projects
IT projects can go horribly wrong – many of us have scars from failed projects. The worst of it is that by the time you realize that a project is in trouble, you have usually sunk so many dollars into it, there is no going back. The only way is forward – at more cost.
A strong project manager with a great track record is a wise choice for leading critical system implementations – big businesses have learned this and SMBs can benefit. The factors that cause projects to go awry are well documented and today’s project management professionals are well versed in the techniques to avoid the project disasters of the past. Hire one for all but your smallest projects.
Enterprise IT for SMB is a way of thinking about IT for small and medium-sized businesses which applies large enterprise practices in a way that best serves SMBs and that SMBs can afford. Under the first area of Managing Growth, aligning IT and business thinking and having a clear IT Roadmap in place, allied with good software selection and implementation practices, are four foundational elements which will support your business growth agenda in an effective way. Stay tuned for Part 3 which looks at Leveraging New Technology.