Barring a change of plans, it is looking like the Summer Olympics that were postponed last summer will proceed, opening on July 23, state of emergency or no state of emergency. While some have raised alarm bells, stating that it is too premature to host an event of the magnitude of the Olympics, the International Olympic Committee has put some rigorous measures in place and is moving ahead with the games.
One element of the Olympics that is universally accepted and appreciated is the 5 rings, a symbol of an event synonymous with a showcase of best-in-class athleticism. Massachusetts-based managed IT services provider Secure Networks has their own version of the 5 rings: 5 key areas of best-in-class service. Learn more about the 5 key IT support areas that business owners need to have top of mind as we head into the second half of 2021.
The First Ring? Managed IT Services
Managed IT services are the foundation of any smoothly running operation. Think of it like synchronized swimming. While there may be hard, unseen work going on frantically beneath the surface, above water is a well-orchestrated, flawless performance that brings joy to everyone watching it.
Managed IT services is a comprehensive suite of IT solutions, including the following:
- Help desk and IT support – with the use of server-monitoring software to be proactive in identifying issues
- Integrations – seamless implementation of tools and solutions to increase productivity and efficiency with no downtime
- Cybersecurity – protection against breaches and cyberattacks, including an ever-increasing onslaught of phishing attacks
- Long-term planning – development of a 3-year IT plan to accommodate for budgeting and growth
Ring Number 2 – Security Suite
Cyberthreats continue to evolve and morph at an alarming pace. And much like the Olympic boxer who wins his bout through the strategic use of protective stance and blocking techniques against incoming blows, so does your managed services provider (MSP) need to use all the security tools at their disposal to ensure proper protection against incoming threats.
From intelligent filtering products designed to block inappropriate web content to enterprise-level firewall solutions to cutting-edge anti-virus and spam protection tools. Working with an MSP that has a robust suite of IT solutions will give your organization a fighting chance against your opponent (your opponent being a growing, relentless and savvy army of cybercriminals).
Ring Number 3 – the Cloud
Like surfing will be at the Summer Olympics in Tokyo, cloud services is the new kid on the block. Clients of Secure Networks can make use of their private cloud infrastructures, which become extensions of their corporate infrastructure. These cloud services come with a host of benefits, including rapid deployment, seamless scalability and significantly reduced costs.
Ring Number 4 – Disaster Recovery
Disaster recovery is all about planning for the worst. Hoping for the best is human nature and helps to keep a positive mindset. While we’re not here to tell you optimists to remove your rose-colored glasses, as Benjamin Franklin so eloquently put it: “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”
Just as triathletes need to plan for the duration, or otherwise risk losing momentum early on and jeopardizing themselves in the long run, so do businesses need to plan for the duration, which includes planning for risk mitigation.
2020 helped to underscore just how critical disaster recovery planning is. There was the pandemic, which forced millions of workers to adapt to work-from-home scenarios, exposing them and their organizations to a plethora of vulnerabilities. There were the natural disasters, from hurricanes to wildfires, that threatened the livelihood of all businesses in their paths. There was the 70% increase in cybercrime, perpetrated by cybercriminals looking to profit from the chaos. Proper disaster recovery processes are a must-have, not a nice-to-have, for business owners.
Ring Number 5 – Microsoft Office 365
And finally, ring number 5 is an oldie but a goodie: Microsoft Office 365. Comfortable, familiar, akin to the gold-medal athlete you look forward to cheering on year after year and can count on to make you proud.
Microsoft Office 365, and its suite of productivity and collaboration features, can give your organization a true competitive advantage. Consider just a handful of the tools included:
- Microsoft MyAnalytics: by maintaining a log of work activities, MyAnalytics will send you a weekly email outlining areas for improvement and recommendations for tools to further enhance your productivity
- Real-time co-authoring: as anyone who has ever worked on v.24, only to find out they should have been working on v.34, can attest to, this is a fantastic piece of functionality
- Microsoft Planner: a project management tool that allows teams to plan workflows, provide status updates and collaborate in a centralized location
Finding the right MSP partner is like sticking that gymnastics landing: tremendously satisfying and applause-worthy. They will move a host of critical IT management responsibilities off your plate, giving you time to run your business more effectively. Contact Secure Networks today – their 5 rings of best-in-class technology consulting services will give your organization that gold-medal feeling.