Why Your Business Needs a Network IT Assessment

Why your business needs a network IT assessment
Many businesses let their IT equipment run on fumes until it quits or breaks down. Then, it’s a frantic scramble to get it back up and running again, resulting in considerable productivity losses and IT costs.   

We get it. If your IT is chugging along just fine, why mess with it? 

But investing in a robust IT strategy and regular, consistent maintenance will reward you in dividends down the road — in costs savings, ROI, employee productivity and efficiency.  

An IT assessment (also called a network or security assessment) is the first step in ensuring your IT environment is up to speed. It identifies critical gaps in your IT environment configuration, so you can prioritize and create an ironclad IT strategy that works for you. Plus, you’ll be able to solve critical issues before they become work-interrupting problems.

What Does an IT Assessment Include?

An IT assessment analyzes the IT health of your business. It identifies opportunities to improve efficiency and where you can reduce risk.  

Network IT assessments look at common issues and errors in the way your environment is configured, including password policies, outdated operating systems and missing patches. 

A network IT assessment has three steps: 

  • Review your company’s environment and technology systems 
  • Provide insight into computer networks, servers and storage 
  • Evaluate where your data is at risk, ways to cut technology costs and necessary improvements

The Most Common Issues That IT Assessments Uncover

At Helixstorm, we conduct IT assessments for nearly every client that comes through the door. We routinely see companies commit the same IT mistakes, regardless of their industry, size or IT environment.   

Lack of Routine IT Maintenance

A lack of routine IT maintenance is typical. Corporate culture tends to rely on crisis management and reactive IT support. They respond to, upgrade and look at their IT environment when there’s a crisis, not before.  

This occurs for several reasons — thinly staffed or no IT support, the endless list of daily to-dos. It’s easy to push off IT maintenance when there’s no urgent need. 

Nonexistent or Outdated Endpoint Security

Every employee laptop, computer and mobile device is a potential security liability. Endpoint security protects networks against viruses, malware and intrusion from each device and point of entry. 

Most business endpoint security is typically nonexistent or outdated. Even if businesses do have antivirus and endpoint security programs installed, they’re often incorrectly configured. Out-of-the-box security software is useless without a policy or plans to manage it. 

Missing Patches

A patch is a software update that updates computer programs. Patches are often issued to fix security vulnerabilities, bugs and usability and performance issues.  

Patching is the best way to solve and prevent security problems before they become an issue. It’s also one of the most commonly overlooked areas of IT security. Regular patches and updates are easy to push aside under the daily grind of IT tickets and requests, especially for thinly staffed IT teams.  

No User or Policy Management

Not every employee needs access to every file in your company — in fact, it’s a liability. Many businesses don’t have group or user policies set in place. Accessing data that they shouldn’t have access to (such as financial, salary or personal human resources files) leaves businesses at risk.  

Poor Lifecycle Management of IT Equipment

 Temecula businesses often rely on outdated servers and operating systems far longer than they should. Not managing the lifecycle of IT equipment hurts employee productivity, wastes resources and inflates your monthly IT costs. 

Getting the Most Out of Your IT Assessment

Performing a network assessment is useless if you don’t follow through on the action items. Here’s how to get the most out of your IT network assessment: 

  • Prioritize tasks based on critical risks to your business. You can’t fix everything at once. If you’re having trouble prioritizing tasks, look at the trade-offs.  
  • Fix immediate issues. Identify and correct critical problems first.  
  • Create an IT roadmap. Lay out a plan for other operational IT expenses. Do you need to upgrade your server? Migrate to Office 365? Move to the cloud? Creating an IT roadmap will help you align your IT environment with your business and growth goals. 

Get Started With a Helixstorm Network and Security Assessment

Nearly every IT initiative, product and strategy boil down to two things — increasing profit and mitigating risk.  

An IT network assessment is the first step to optimizing and securing your computer systems and planning a healthy IT strategy. 

At Helixstorm, we’ll help you get started with a free network and security assessment. We’ll help you identify where your data is at risk, how to cut technology costs and recommendations to improve network speed.

Get your free IT network assessment now