How to Keep Your Business IT Strategy on Track in 2021

mapping out IT strategy on white board

The new year comes with new hope for businesses. Despite the major setbacks of 2020, life is returning to a more stable state, which means you can focus more on business concerns, including your IT strategy. Simply improving this aspect of your company can deliver immediate results and expedite organizational growth.

Beginning this year by getting your IT strategy in order can set a pattern of business growth and success for the rest of 2021.

As an experienced Abilene Managed Service Provider, we can help you get things on track. Here are some of the biggest moves businesses are making and some popular focus points for business IT strategy in 2021.

Improved Cloud Utilization

Not using the cloud for your business is no longer an option for many organizations. Experts estimate that 94% of workloads will be handled on the cloud in 2021. And recent global circumstances have shown just how essential the cloud is to keep your business running.

Cloud services have enabled a massive number of employees to work remotely and safely. They can simply log in from home and access their workflow, even working collaboratively with other employees through platforms such as Microsoft Teams. Remote work has been beneficial to many companies throughout the pandemic and is likely to continue at least to some degree well after the risks of COVID-19 are decreased.

The cloud also gives your company excellent scalability. Cloud hosting removes the need for a physical server, so you don’t have to expend time and resources building an on-site data center, which may outgrow in a year or two anyway. The cloud gives you what you need, when you need it. If you aren’t fully using the cloud, make 2021 the year that you start. 

Employee Security Training

In 2020 alone, 36 billion records were breached during over 3,000 cybersecurity incidents. While experienced hackers accounted for most of these breaches, lax security measures certainly helped them succeed. Your employees and management teams likely mean well, but some may still be careless with online security, either through a lack of knowledge of secure practices or a lack of understanding of their importance.

Human error poses such a large risk to cybersecurity that in Texas, it is now mandated that all local and state government employees complete a certified security awareness training program.

You can help keep your data secure by focusing on employee security training—not just for new employees, but for your entire staff. Provide ongoing training that addresses the latest social engineering techniques, secure password practices, and strong online habits.

To increase your employees’ preparedness and turn them into a cybersecurity asset, add the following steps to your IT strategy this year:

  • Create an incident response plan. You need a step-by-step list that details what actions to take in case of a data breach. Everyone needs to know who to notify and what additional security measures to implement. 
  • Keep your employees up to date on the latest phishing scams. Too often, workers unthinkingly click on a false link that gives the scammer access to their inbox and private company info. These bad actors can then may hack your payment system, hijack and sell company developments or compromise your company in other ways.
  • Implement multi-factor authentication. Taking a few extra seconds to verify your authority through multi-factor authentication makes it nearly impossible for hackers to gain access to your data.
  • Implement penetration testing. Apart from suffering through an actual attack, pen testing is the only way to get a clear vision of how you would fare in a real-life cyber attack. Penetration testing will help you identify and bridge security gaps.

Utilize Managed IT Services

You can implement these important changes more easily with the help of a managed IT service provider. Working with a trusted Managed Service Provider (MSP) like Tolar Systems gives you the benefits of a large IT department without the high overhead costs.

We can manage your network, improve your online security, repair system issues, and provide backup and recovery services. We can also work with your in-house team to meet industry compliance regulations and create improved workflows. Plus, with our help, you gain 24/7 system monitoring and a reliable support line when you have IT issues.

In short, hiring a managed service provider can quickly take your business to a new level of productivity and efficiency while potentially saving you money by reducing staff hires and eliminating IT problems.

Work with Tolar Systems

Focusing on your IT in 2021 is a great way to boost your business past the unexpected slowdowns of last year. The past year has shown how easily normal business practices can be disrupted, but having a sound IT strategy in place can make all the difference in your company’s performance.

We can help you develop your IT strategy to empower your business goals, no matter what your needs are. We helped our clients quickly, securely, and successfully transition to remote environments in 2020, and we’re just as prepared to help you face this year’s challenges and growth opportunities. Contact us today to get your IT strategy on track for 2021.