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Updated 29 Feb 2020

Getting your start-up’s technology and tools right

For any start-up today, no matter the industry or sector it belongs to, having the right technology tools and platforms in place is critical to success.

Colin Thornton, 31 May 2018  Share  0 comments  Print

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For any start-up today, no matter the industry or sector it belongs to, having the right technology tools and platforms in place is critical to success. In a business world dominated by agility, security and efficiency, technology is undoubtedly a key enabler – but it can also be a crippling stumbling block.

Too often, aspiring entrepreneurs do not ensure that staff and management have the right tools; or, if they do have the proper technology, employees often lack the knowledge to maximise the benefits of such tools (and keep the company secure).  

Ultimately, avoiding negative outcomes within a start-up comes down to your ability as an entrepreneur and leader to implement a successful IT rollout.

These five employee technology adoption strategies are a good place to start:

1. Plan your technology tools & platforms carefully

Successful rollouts don’t begin with training programs - the success or failure of your program begins with the technology you’ve chosen, and why you’ve chosen it.

Related: 3 Traits of successful start-up founders

2. Choose a champion

Appoint one employee who is responsible for making sure the configuration matches the business needs, and then drives the user adoption. For example, someone who can input data to test a customer or employee experience, as well as examine reporting outputs to see if they’re relevant. Ideally, you should give this person a KPI, which, if met, results in a bonus (e.g. if survey results sent to employees result in a rating of 80% or higher).

3. Develop a structured rollout plan

After you’ve decided upon your technology, use the information you’ve gathered about benefits, pain points and stakeholders to establish a robust roll-out plan. The scope of your plan will vary, based on the type of technology you’ve selected.

4. Design an engaging training programme

This is critical to ensure that your staff are as excited as you about the technology you’ve selected. Make the tutorials both relevant and accessible, avoiding any tedious explanations and boring information overload.

5. Educate around security threats

Sadly, despite all the news headlines that highlight cyber fraud and the risk to employees and businesses, few people understand how to identify a phishing email. This is a highly risky scenario for business owners. One tactic that has proven to be successful in driving phishing awareness is regular internal testing.

Related: You need this one trait to succeed in reaching your goals

In conjunction with training, companies should arguably be implementing regular testing by sending employees fake phishing emails. They can then measure and track the outcomes of such tests and encourage employees to operate with a higher level of awareness.  

Without doubt, human fallibility presents the greatest opportunity for savvy cyber criminals. Reports have found that compromised credentials represent the majority of hacks, which often comes down to a user having been tricked or manipulated into revealing key information. To prevent this, constant education and awareness programmes are essential

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About the author

Colin Thornton

Colin Thornton is MD of Dial a Nerd and Turrito Networks. Colin founded Dial a Nerd in 1998 as a consumer IT support company and in 2002 the business-focussed division was founded. Supporting SME’s is now its primary focus. In 2015 his company, merged with Turrito Networks who provided niche Internet Services outside of the local network. These two companies have created an end-to-end IT and Communication solution for SME’s. From supplying a laptop right through to designing and delivering a fibre connected geo-redundant hybrid-cloud solution. This type of end-to-end service was typically only possible for Enterprise customers but now SME’s, mid-market organizations, homes and schools can benefit too – for a fraction of the cost. Contact him at [email protected]

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