Covid19 has brought many changes and challenges to the business world including for ourselves in HCS. Many businesses have had to Evolve & Adapt to new challenges with innovation and creativity.
We have helped many of our customers to adapt to a remote working environment and we continue to support them as the restrictions look set to continue. Our own repsonse to the crisis involved the development of 3 new apps that we are using internally to help protect our staff and follow the public health guidelines. As part of our ongoing support to customers we are offered these apps to their business FREE OF CHARGE.
SWIPEIN is an app that we built using MS Power Platform that automates the contact gathering and health screening process for visitors to a premises.
The app can be accessed via a touchscreen (we have it mounted on the wall inside our main door) or on a desktop at any entry point. A visitor can input their contact details and answer 5 quick questions relating to their current health status. The app also notifies the staff member they are visiting of their arrival by email. See video.
ONLINE HEALTH ASSESMENT
ONLINE HEALTH ASSESMENT: We have also built an online form using MS Forms that can be emailed out prior to a person’s visit which they complete online. Click to view form.
HCS LEARN365 is an online learning portal for staff using Microsoft 365. It has helpful tips, tricks and videos on using Microsoft Solutions like Teams, Outlook etc . It has a news section where you can share company news and also practical advice for working from home and being cyber security aware. LEARN365 gives staff quick access to the information they need to be more productive and more secure while remote. See video
Dan Hegarty, HCS Director was interviewed by The Business Post on why businesses must make security a matter of undivided attention. Dan explains how HCS, as Ireland’s leading Select Partner for Fortinet, delivers not only world class security solutions but the expertise to build on every deployment to make the most of the right technologies for different situations.
In his article Dan suggests that for organisations looking to respond to evolving challenges effectively, there can be a financial barrier to invest in professionals with security skillsets. Managed services can offer an alternative route to achieving comprehensive security, compared with the need to invest in individuals.
“Covid-19 has seen businesses face a steep learning curve to secure productivity and that extends to providingscalability for growth in an unusual time. Providers like HCS are well-positioned in the industry to address these evolving needs.”
To read Dan’s article click here.
Learn more about our Security Solutions and Services and Contact Us to speak to one of our team.
Businesses of all sizes choose to outsource their IT to an IT Services company for a variety of reasons. Sometimes they outsource the whole IT function and other times parts of it such as when they are experiencing a skill shortage inhouse. For example Cyber Security is a particular skillset that can be expensive to bring inhouse. Outsourcing to a Managed IT Services company with expertise in Cyber Security can reduce the cost and risk associated with managing cyber security across a network.
As a Managed IT Services company we work with lots of different businesses on a bespoke level. We have compiled our top 5 reasons why it makes sense to outsource IT.
1. Cost Savings
Outsourcing IT reduces the overall cost of ownership and makes the IT budget work harder for your business. A Managed IT Services provider will be able to deliver economies of scale and in doing so free up budget that you can invest in other areas of the business. IT can be expensive to install and run and it takes well trained individuals to do it right. Outsourcing IT allows you to avail of the expertise needed to maintain and efficient IT environment that is flexible and can scale according to the business needs. Put simply you can pay for what you use and set a monthly budget for support rather than employ the skills all inhouse which can be expensive. Outsourcing IT allows for a leaner IT spend but critically it is being spent in the most efficient way possible and will protect your IT investment into the future.
2. Focus on Core Business
Engaging with an IT services company to run your IT allows you to focus on other areas of the business such as core goals and objectives. Even if you have an IT Manager inhouse they can often get sucked into providing user support which takes them away from focusing on projects that could enable the business to grow and run better such as automating workflows and productivity projects. Outsourcing even business IT Support only alleviates the workload on IT staff to allow them to focus their energies where their competencies lie.
3. Access to Enterprise Level Solutions
IT Services Companies partner with global leaders in the IT space and build on their solutions to deliver more value from deployments. Using a Managed IT Provider gives smaller businesses access to enterprise level technology at a price point that they can afford. Managed Service Providers can tailor their service to meet the needs of a smaller budget. Businesses get to utilise world class technologies and solutions which they may have thought were outside their reach and can avail of ongoing IT support from the people that know the technology best.
4. Better Cyber Security
Cyber Security is critical especially during recent times when cyber criminals have exploited the current remote working environment to gain access to vulnerable networks. During the pandemic Cyber attacks have increased by over 400% in frequency. IT Services Companies have particular expertise in Cyber Security and data protection. Cyber security is constantly evolving. As threats become more sophisticated so do the solutions to protect against them. A robust cyber security strategy has many layers and is a blend of solutions and services depending on the business needs. For example businesses in the financial sector and others that are highly regulated have specific criteria that they need to meet to be compliant in the cyber security area. An outsource IT Services company with expertise in Cyber Security will be knowledgeable on what needs to be done to fulfil compliance needs. Handing over IT Management ensures that Cyber Security is not neglected due to a lack of time or resource or knowledge internally.
5. Proactive IT Management
IT cannot just be installed and forgotten about. The biggest risk to a business is legacy or outdated IT. For example an unpatched PC can be the source of a damaging cyber attack. Or downtime from an outdated infrastructure with reduced processing power can affect a customer’s perception of a business and lead to brand and reputation damage. Staff need to be equipped with the tools and technologies that enable them to do their job well, especially remotely. Outsourcing IT to an Managed IT Services company will come with business IT Support agreements that surpass not only solving user issues but managing and maintaining systems and hardware as you move forward. This will future proof your investment in IT and keep it working efficiently reducing leakage of resource time and money through poorly maintained networks.
At HCS Business Solutions we partner with our customers to balance their IT needs now and into the future with budget and the current business climate. We adopt a flexible working model with customer service and security at the heart of it. Our aim is to keep our customers IT working as best it can for them and to guide them to invest in the right areas to ensure their IT is protected into the future.
In a few short weeks back in March the working world changed. Covid 19 turned what was a growing trend into an everyday reality. Workers all over the country set up home offices, requested laptops, network access and headsets to do their everyday jobs from the kitchen table.
Some companies already had remote working policies in place. For others though it was an avalanche.
In the rush to get set up companies used what applications were readily at their disposal e.g. third party file sharing and free video conferencing with no real long term thinking.
Now things have changed. Remote working is set to remain for some time to come and indeed could well become the preferred option for many workers. 83% have indicated they want to keep working from home after the Covid 19 crisis has ended. This week Google announced have pulled out of talks to lease a 7-storey office in Dublin and others will follow suit.
Businesses need to look at their remote working environment with a longer-term strategy in mind.
The greatest challenge facing businesses is a technical one – giving each user the tools for safe and efficient remote working. Delivering laptops to employees is just one part of the problem. Ensuring that they have access to basic applications like email and file sync and sharing through remote desktop access and virtual infrastructures is key. Security is a major concern as cyber criminals take advantage of new inadequately protected devices accessing business networks from many different locations.
IT as an Enabler
IT has a crucial role to play in enabling businesses to operate in this new normal and the early adopters will reap the rewards. Those that move fast to Evolve and Adapt their business will not only ensure continuity but gain a competitive advantage.
- The cloud is the backbone of remote working. Cloud based applications and services allow employees to access the information they need regardless of their location.
- Modern communication tools enable remote collaboration in realtime speeding up decision making.
- Productivity is enhanced through digitally transforming processes via Microsoft’s Power Platform
- Security is imperative as cyber criminals look to exploit vulnerabilities that the new normal presents.
It is time now to Evolve and Adapt your business.
We adopt a holistic approach to our customers focusing on the current issues but with a forward-looking perspective. Our objective is to solve immediate problems but make sure that your investment is protected into the future. And we always have security at the centre of what we do.
We can help you modernise and evolve into a business that will operate competitively in the here and now plus scale up or down cost effectively in the current fluctuating and uncertain marketplace.
Call us to arrange a review of your business IT with a member of our team.