The Pulse Blog

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Setting business goals for 2024 and giving your business the once-over

With 2024 approaching, it’s a good time for business owners to set goals for what they want to do differently next year.

This process begins with a self-assessment:

  • How is your business doing?
  • Is everything running the way you want it to be doing?
  • Are there some areas that could stand an improvement or even an upgrade?

Let’s look at a few areas that each business owner should assess as 2024 approaches.

IT Systems

First, your company’s IT system

How strong is your network? Small Business Trends reminds business owners that, according to a Cybercrime study by Accenture, nearly 43% of cyber attacks are targeted toward small and medium-sized businesses, and that only 14% of these targeted businesses were prepared to handle such attacks. What an attack costs a business can be staggering in terms of revenue as well as lost opportunities. The study shows that cybercrime costs are expected to rise by 15% over the next five years.

Steps to consider as part of your business plan for 2024:

  1. Consider having an IT professional conduct a Penetration Test of your infrastructure to see where the weaknesses and vulnerabilities are – and to recommend ways to fix these weaknesses. A simulated test will prepare you so that, should an actual attack on your system occur, you’ll be in much better shape to handle it.

  2. If you are not currently conducting employee training, institute ongoing employee training to help employees identify threats to your company’s infrastructure. As high as 80% of hacking incidents come as a result of compromised credentials or passwords, and an even higher percentage – 85% to 90% - of infrastructure attacks are initially caused by human error (accidentally clicking on a link). Contact your MSP to inquire about a training program.

  3. Arrange for a review of your protection. Do you have the latest software? Are your upgrades all in order? Is your network operating at its optimum efficiency? Partnering with an MSP can help you understand what you need to make your system operate smoothly and efficiently.

Printed Documents

Next: how your company produces printed documents

A number of studies show that the average employee prints 10,000 pages per year. Think of how quickly that number multiplies in a large company or institution. Within those large numbers, there is considerable room for doing so more efficiently.

Here’s something else to consider: the average company spends between 1% and 3% of its total bottom line (total dollars spent) on print-related tasks. For a mid-sized company with annual sales of $10,000,000, that means an expenditure of approximately $300,000 on printing. For larger companies, the costs expended are even m ore dramatic. As 2024 approaches, this is a great time to evaluate how your company generates documents – and consider ways to lower the costs and conserve on paper use at the same time.

Steps to consider as part of your business plan for 2024:

  1. If you are not currently in an MPS (Managed Print Services) program, contact a trusted dealer/professional to help you establish one. MPS is the practice of reorganizing your print needs based on per page cost, rather than the initial price point of equipment. An MPS program will evaluate the use of each copier/printer in your system and make certain that it is the right fit for that printing need. MPS practices can save business owners anywhere between 10% and 25% of their total document generation costs.

  2. Investigate alternates to printing every document – including storing on software programs instead of paper. Again, an MPS provider can walk you through how to do this.

  3. Institute a recycling program for your paper and toner – which is good for the environment and your employees will value the gesture. Learn more about Pulse's Recycling Program


Furnishing your office: today’s environment is different than a decade ago

As businesses look toward a new year, this is a good time to take stock of the furnishings in the office as well. Today’s offices look and feel much different than their predecessors of a decade ago. The forward-thinking business owner will look at furniture not just from the aesthetics or “how does it look” viewpoint but also from functionality and with an eye toward improving employee comfort and productivity. Some offices are furnished with treadmill desks, sit-stand chairs, and adjustable height desks for use while standing or sitting.

Some businesses also look toward creating pods and booths for privacy, and walls or dividers. Other office innovations can include soundproofing and charging stations – for laptop and iPhone charging, and of course, strong Wi-Fi. And let’s not overlook the new reality: namely, that many office environments are hybrid, with some employees working in the office and others working remotely. The furnishing needs for each office environment will vary.

Steps you can take as 2024 approaches

Consult with an office furniture professional. Is your office laid out in the most effective way? Ask what kinds of improvements/upgrades are popular with employees; and if it makes sense to implement them, do so.

AV Video Conference

Finally, AV/videoconferencing

Covid-19 ushered in the “remote work” environment. For a few years, meeting in person was practically impossible. This led the way to an increased interest in audio visual solutions for the office – including video walls and upgraded videoconferencing. Business owners came to learn that if they couldn’t be there in person, video meetings (whether Teams, Zoom, GoTo Meeting or other options) could in some cases prove to be a good substitute.

Video displays and video walls can be used for meetings with clients in distant cities, but there are many more uses as well. Video can bring life to meetings and conferences. And for larger organizations where there is significant foot traffic (stadiums, corporate settings and so forth) there is opportunity for messages and even sponsor advertising.

Video is a new world for business and worth learning more about how it can help you.

Steps you can take as 2024 approaches

Contact your office technology professional to learn how video walls and video conferencing can give your business a boost. Ask for a demonstration. It may well prove to be the best hour you have ever spent.

The common thread to all of these suggestions for how to look more critically at your business is that they involve using technology to help improve your business. Not only can technology improve your business efficiency, it is a good return on investment. Taking the time to do an assessment of your company’s 2024 needs will be time well spent. We can help you with all of these areas, and more. Please contact us here or give us a call at (888) 357-4277.


Topics: Managed IT, Technology, Managed Service Provider, IT, MSP, Copiers, Office Setup, Managed Services, Office Furniture, Document Management, Managed Service Providers, Presentation, employees, Managed Print Provider, Managed Print Services, interactive whiteboard, smartboard, Office Design, Video Walls, video displays, training, penetration testing, how to, conference room, managed IT services, videoconferencing

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