Productivity – Part 1

Whether we are running a small or a large business, for most of us one of the biggest operating expense is employee salaries and compensation. I am sure no one will argue the fact that the higher the employee productivity, the better for the business. This is even more true in today’s economic climate, where operating expenses are going up, but revenue seems to trend in the opposite direction. Depending on the type of operation, couple of ways to keep our company profitable is to improve employee productivity and introduce automation.

While there are many factors affecting employee productivity, in this article we will focus on how personal computers affect our operation. And for this specific example, personal computers include both Desktop and Mobile PCs as well as Servers hosting our data and software applications.

The question is what happens when our business is heavily dependent on computers and computer networks (is there one that isn’t) in the event of an outage? The productivity of our employees who are directly affected drops to nearly 0%. The impact may be compounded by the fact that while our computer systems are down, not only are our employees unproductive, but we may be losing revenue because we are not taking new orders, not ringing transactions at the cash register, not creating new insurance policies, not selling real estate, fill in the blank that applies to your operation. Now factor in the cost for repairing the problem and we have one expensive outage on our hands. There is actually a formula that I will share with you in one of the next articles on how to calculate the cost of computer down time. It is an eye opener and it helps put things in perspective when discussing IT-related operating expenses.

So if we are in agreement that computer-related outages directly affect our employees’ productivity and revenue the question is how do we avoid prolonged outages? The answer is preventative measures.

Don’t wait until it is too late to put preventative measures in place. I know, we are all too busy managing other areas of our business. I know, we don’t have the in-house IT resources to address the issue. I know, we have been thinking about it and will get to it soon. But don’t wait too long. Some damages are irreversible without preventative measures in place. Our computer and network environment may seem placid on the surface, but it is a living, breathing thing that requires attention and just like the human body, without preventative measures in place illness is much more expensive to treat in advanced stages.

Read part 2.

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