Spring clean your business
Everything gets a bit musty over winter. Moats of dust settle on surfaces and bookshelves. Damp patches creep up bathroom walls.
Which is where the idea of a spring clean comes in, of course. When the sun returns, we throw open the windows, let in the light, and get to work.
What’s true of our homes should also be true of our businesses. During the hectic, hard-working winter months we can let the basics slide. But it’s not the walls and windows that need a good clean (though they may do too), it’s the digital infrastructure on which so much of modern business depends.
With that in mind, here are five priorities for your digital spring clean, and why you need to do them sooner rather than later.
1. Order your inbox
It’s less important than it used to be, thanks to advanced email search, but it’s still a good idea to bring some order to your inbox. When you delete old emails and archive important ones, you’ll start to get a clearer sense of priorities, and important threads will be easier to find. Getting rid of old tasks also brings a sense of satisfaction. Don’t forget to unsubscribe to newsletters you no longer read.
And perhaps most importantly, when done en masse cleaning out inboxes can free up a decent amount of room on the company server or your cloud storage service. It’s amazing how quickly even 100Gb of memory can get filled up by everyday business use, so having a thorough tidy could help you keep costs down.
2. Back everything up
Ideally, you’ll have a solution that automatically backs up your files, folders and data at least daily. If you don’t, this is a good time to think about getting one. If you’re a very small business and that feels like overkill, you should at least manually back-up your important data at regular intervals. If you haven’t done it for a while, make it a priority.
Where you save your business-critical information depends on your size and needs, but cloud storage is the obvious choice. If you’re still dependent on flash drives or external hard drives, make sure they’re kept in a different physical location from the computers that store the original copies.
3. Make sure your connectivity is up to scratch
Does your internet connection feel a bit clunky? Does it slow down at busy times of day? Does it ever feel frustrating to use?
Many businesses saw their connectivity needs rocket during the pandemic as they added the cloud and communications services that facilitated remote work. In many cases, they made do with the internet service they had, to avoid extra lockdown expense. But semi-remote work is now permanent, and businesses are continuing and even accelerating digital transformation plans. Connectivity is the foundation stone of any digital strategy, and in many cases it’s being stretched, sometimes to breaking point.
Businesses that are concerned about the speed and reliability of their internet connection should talk to a provider about a potential upgrade. Moving from copper to fibre, for example, is an inexpensive fix that can help your business modernise and scale. And prevention is better than cure – do it now before a lengthy outage makes the issue impossible to ignore.
4. Update your devices
It’s harder to stay on top of basic IT housework when people are working from home, or are in the office but at different times. Also, updating devices and software might have been a lesser priority during the last couple of years.
It needs to be done asap. Hard- and software that is not updated is a security risk. It may also be slower and less reliable. Much of your IT estate may update automatically, but employees can switch this feature off, or continually delay an operating system upgrade (say) because of the inconvenience it may cause. Now’s the time to ensure every device and system is running the latest patches and updates. Do it today.
5. Actually clean stuff
That’s right, actually – physically – cleaning computers, monitors and keyboards is a good idea too. Why? Well, because they pick a lot of gunk, which can be unsightly and also a bit, well, yuk.
But don’t just go at your devices with a dishcloth. If you’re going to do it, do it right (and in a way that won’t damage your expensive kit).
At the same time, declutter your workspace, whether that’s in the office or at home. Why? Well, because visual clutter is distracting, and people are more productive in tidy environments. Experts advise that your desktop should be home to your computer and keyboard, telephone, a couple of pens and a notebook, a family photo and…that’s it.
Your Vaioni digital spring clean
Vaioni is offering businesses like yours a free digital audit, which is basically a spring clean for your core digital infrastructure. Our specialists will analyse your internet use to ensure you have the right speeds and bandwidth at all times.
We can also take a holistic view of your current cybersecurity solution, to make sure you have the defences in place for new ways of working. Finally, we’ll be happy to audit your communication and collaboration solution, focusing on flexibility and cost.