Considering how much business is done online and how much technology companies use, having an IT department is more important than ever. Your IT department is in charge of installing and maintaining the computer network systems of your company (along with various other duties). Without an IT department, any network problems you encounter could be a cost, both in terms of time and money.
As a result, they are quite important and can make or break your business. Because of this, it is important to keep them operating as effectively and efficiently as possible. This article is going to look at a few different ways you can improve the IT department at your small business.
Provide Them With Helpful Tools
In order for your IT department to thrive, you need to provide them with the best tools to do their job. This can include anything from network monitoring software to log management software. If you provide your team with outdated software or tools that aren’t capable of much, performance will be poor.
Also, if you have employees manually doing things that can be automated, you are hurting their efficiency. So what tools do you choose? Well on top of asking your team the tools they would like, you can also check out online review sites, such as DNSstuff. These sites will compare a number of different tools to one another, speeding up the research process for you. While these tools aren’t always free, think of it more as an investment in your team than a cost.
Encourage Continued Education and Development
While your employees are done with school, that doesn’t mean they should stop learning. You should provide your employees with opportunities to develop their skills and improve their knowledge. This could be in the form of workshops, conferences, online courses or additional and new responsibilities at work.
This not only gives your employees a feeling of accomplishment but also lets them know you care about them improving. Employees generally respond well to managers that appreciate them enough to invest time and money into development. In fact, well over half of employees say they would quit a job that they felt underappreciated at. These types of things can break up a mundane routine, which energizes your IT team and could increase morale as well.
Communicate and Collaborate
Keeping any department, especially IT, in the dark is a recipe for disaster. You need to talk about not only the goals and progress of the company but how the IT department is contributing to that progress.
Your employees want to know what they are expected to do. Establishing both group and individual goals can go a long way in improving your IT department. Of course, be sure not to micromanage and allow your team some freedom at the same time.
In addition to communicating with your IT team, it is also important for them to collaborate with one another. Working together can increase efficiency and effectiveness, as well as foster good relationships. While many companies hold frequent meetings to keep everyone on the same page and collaborate, this might not be a great idea.
This is because meetings are generally a waste of time, can hurt productivity and even affect employee happiness. If you are going to hold meetings, keep them short and infrequent. On the other hand, try using an app like Slack, Trello or Asana to help team members communicate and work together.
We hope that this blog post will help you improve the IT department at your small business. IT plays a huge role in most businesses, so make sure you're supporting and improving the department as much as possible.