When you invest in technology for your business, you’re looking to gain a positive return. Investments, unlike costs or expenses, are expected to add value. We want to believe that each IT purchase was carefully considered and ultimately delivers on its promise. In a perfect world, all technology investments would directly contribute to the success of a business.
Alas, we all know that some IT assets will fail to deliver on their promised value. Some purchases were rushed, others no longer make sense, and a few investments just never reached their potential. Business leaders need a way to assess whether their IT is delivering a lackluster performance. Technology Business Reviews (TBRs) play a powerful role in enabling decision-makers to limit unnecessary expenses and reallocate resources to more promising IT initiatives.
What Are Technology Business Reviews (TBR)?
A Technology Business Review (TBR) is a formal, comprehensive evaluation of all aspects of your IT environment. A high-quality TBR does not need to take more than 1 hour (although highly complex or technology heavy businesses might require 2 hours). Topics typically covered in a technology business review include:
- Asset Review – workstations, servers, network equipment, applications, data repositories
- Performance Metrics – system uptime, service provider’s response times, and problem resolution times
- Data Protections – backups, restoration tests, contingency planning
- Security/Compliance Posture – notable incidents, security awareness training, contingency planning
- Notable Projects – any significant IT initiatives (completed or ongoing)
- IT Budget – allocations and expenditures
- Technology Roadmap – upcoming IT projects, budget forecasts
At a minimum every business should hold a TBR annually, but most find that a quarterly Technology Business Review is the best cadence. Even if you don’t touch on every topic listed above, it’s so important to regularly review the progress of your IT projects, evaluate the performance of your IT investments, and discuss IT challenges in the business. This facilitates budgeting for current and future IT initiatives to help you achieve your business goals.
Net Friends Pro-Tip:
Technology Business Reviews establish a forum for business stakeholders to provide IT feedback and report on how your technology assets are supporting operations. It allows you to monitor whether your IT gaps are widening or narrowing based on the solutions you’re implementing in your IT roadmap.
Why Your MSP Should Lead Your TBRs
Your IT partner is the ideal facilitator for ongoing TBRs in your organization. A Managed Service Provider (MSP) will leverage proprietary tools to deliver business intelligence and other insight-driven recommendations that help you make informed IT decisions. The best MSPs will assign someone to you who can consistently conduct a high-quality Technology Business Review, acting like a virtual Chief Information Officer (vCIO). Having an outside vendor conduct your TBRs helps ensure that your business regularly revisits your IT strategy to critically assess whether you’re on-track, behind schedule, or off course altogether. Your MSP serves as an accountability partner on your journey to reaching new business successes with every technology decision.
The typical TBR session with Net Friends incorporates data and business intelligence from multiple sources to support a comprehensive review of your assets and IT environment. Plan and budget for hardware refreshes and track recent patches, backups, and updates from a high level. We walk customers through their computing platforms and systems to not only support lifecycle management, but also actively identify and address problems that are causing service issues.
Our Technology Business Reviews also help customers improve their cybersecurity and business resiliency by prioritizing IT security and tracking cybersecurity awareness training for the whole organization. If your business is subjected to industry or data regulations, such as HIPAA or PCI DSS, our expert consultants are versed in compliance and data protection best practices to help you exceed the highest standards. Net Friends is SOC 2 Type II compliant and our systems and processes have your back.
Why Align Your IT with Your Business Goals
The right technology optimized to perform for your business will increase your efficiency, advance your operational maturity, and improve your customers’ experiences. The best way to align your IT with your business goals is to track how each IT expense earns its value and correlates with your desired business outcomes. Here’s a step-by-step guide to aligning your technology with your business:
- Identify Your Business Goals
- Assess Your Current Technology (and Identify IT Gaps)
- Develop A Technology Roadmap & Implement Your IT Priorities
- Monitor Progress with Ongoing Technology Business Reviews
Your IT Partner for TBRs and More
Net Friends is eager to support your success and to enable your business stakeholders to gain confidence in your technology resources. Start your Net Friends journey today. Contact Net Friends to learn more about how we can help you unlock a greater return on every IT investment.