A New Focus for Manufacturing Companies
Small to medium sized manufacturing organizations are typically understaffed, which makes them a high value target to “would be” threat actors. Actors like this are likely trying to gain access to their systems for monetary gain. I know from experience that there is a lot on your plate: extensive amounts of maintenance to take care of, providing general support to the organization, and pushing the organization forward through the strategic use of available technology resources. Organizations must choose what to focus on and we know the value add is a more effective use of your resources. However, we can’t neglect the maintenance of what’s already in place. A co-managed IT partner like Peters can help you with daily technology maintenance to help you focus on strategic use for the future.
Benefits of Co-managed IT for Manufacturers
Technology can provide productivity improvements, strategic advantages, and drive revenue initiatives for your company and its stakeholders. By lowering costs through productivity improvements or increasing the revenue generation through strategic IT deployments, your IT organization can make the shift away from being a cost center. By being used more effectively, your technology personnel will have the potential to know the fullness of the business operation and how to improve productivity. Our IT groups are lucky in the fact that we not only work within our own departments, but also in white spaces that exist, freeing up time for you to look at how information, data, or technology flows from department to department. Almost like a network, we can more easily see the handoffs between upstream and downstream operations.
A small technology improvement can cause large productivity gains over time leading to happier employees. These gains can be as small as utilization of technology to track product flow, or as large as improving the order to cash cycle. They can help with customer experience to allow for streamlined operations, ultimately creating repeatable happy customers. We can help the organization move orders electronically and without error. Through our organization, the streamlined use of supply chain processes at the back end, we eliminate the Muda, or waste. Our processes can help to facilitate higher revenue, higher margins, high productivity, and happy customers, employees, and vendors.
Co-managed IT & Modern Employees
Modern employees are demanding innovative technology tools be at their disposal. If you don’t work with employees on defining the requirements and filling the perceived critical need, they have two choices: to go somewhere else or to get the technology themselves through a “Shadow IT” process. Employee turnover is expensive – from training to loss in intellectual capital and a decrease in productivity as you on-board that next employee. It can become a vicious cycle. This often-hidden opportunity cost can outweigh the implementation of modern technology tools. Luckily, in the subscription-oriented world that we live in today we can easily spin technology up and down, add resources where needed, or switch to other available tools quickly.
We as technology professionals need to be listening to our internal customers, asking the right questions, filling the right needs of the users with solutions to foster adoption and use, and then deploy tools rapidly and effectively. If we don’t cooperatively act in this manner, it can cause users to take matters into their own hands, which can provide a less productive and cost-effective strategy for the organization through a “Shadow IT” operation. This can create an ongoing maintenance nightmare for general maintenance, security, updates, and control. It also creates a system where users manage the business with micro systems of spreadsheets, websites, etc. that do not talk to each other.
Without a centralized solution feeding all aspects of the organization, proper productivity/information improvements are prevented from being provided to upstream or downstream users. This can also lead to issues with licensing such as overpayments or inaccurate reporting. All the above have lasting effects, which is why your co-managed IT providers need to be fully integrated into the business instead of operating in a silo.
Leadership needs to align manufacturing IT with the business side to become a facilitator to continuous improvement through deployment of the right technology resources and security.
How can a Co-managed IT provider like Peters and Associates help?
- Maintenance and Support – Peters can remove the mundane and routine tasks from your day-to-day operations such as patching systems, checking backups, managing antivirus, and monitoring systems. Because we provide these services for many organizations, we can handle them on a large scale. We can even support your organization with first line help desk inquiries to move things along quicker with our support desk operations; helping you to solve problems faster and making employees happier.
- Security Monitoring – Peters can help monitor the pulse of security in the organization through our security practice. Whether it be Security as a Service (SaaS) solutions, assessments, or monitoring events occurring on the network, Peters is there to help you guard your digital assets.
- Strategic Planned Usage of Technology – Peters can facilitate rapid technology deployment, helping to move projects along faster in your organization using technical resources that know what they are doing and can get you there faster than you can alone. Peters can also guide you in the strategic usage of technology that your organization needs to use and deploy, as well as provide you with recommendations for future improvements. One way we can help carry out this is through an assessment of your organization’s technology or processes to make them more secure and robust as you move toward your new future.
We offer comprehensive managed service packages that include everything from desktop support to professional security services. We can help you navigate your co-managed IT options to find the package that’s right for you. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more – we are happy to help!
For more resources on co-managed IT, check out these blogs: