Technology can have a make or break impact on business. Great technology can lead to more streamlined processes, more efficient output, and faster execution. Bad technology can be can lead to frustration, poor performance, and greater consequences to a business’s reputation.Despite Los Angeles CPAs becoming more adept and knowledgeable about technology in the workplace, generally speaking, they are still making some mistakes
1. Obsolete Hardware & Software
Older, obsolete software and hardware can lead to a less than efficient outcome. It can also add to your support costs. What’s worse is that often businesses will not have standardized systems and software in place. This leads to a combination of various components that are at different life cycle stages, creating incompatibilities. Ultimately leading to poor performance, reduced productivity, increased security lapses, and increased costs.
CPAs and accountants can avoid these issues by standardizing their systems and upgrading every few years.
2. Going Cheap
As the saying goes, "you get what you pay for." Although you might be saving money in the short run, Los Angeles CPAs can lose a lot of money in the long run by utilizing cheaper technology. There's also the saying, "penny wise, pound foolish." Businesses should do their due diligence when purchasing systems for their business evaluating solutions based on the long-term ROI rather than the initial expense.
3. Poor Power Protection
Power surges, spikes, or sags can have a debilitating impact that can cause downtime ranging from a few hours to a few days to correct. In addition, these power problems can lead to shortened lifespans for computers, network components, printers, and other electronic devices.
When using a simple power strip, the business is vulnerable to problems. Businesses should utilize proper surge protection equipment from trusted sources and replace these units every few years to ensure proper upkeep. One of the most flagrant "misses" we all too often see are CPA firms who don't even know that their servers aren't protected by their UPSes. Is yours one of these?
4. poor Backup Protection
Having inadequate backup technology in place can have a devastating impact for Los Angeles CPAs. Whether it’s due to a system failure or some other event, having systems go down without a recent and tested backup could result in a massive data loss.
This can be avoided easily. Having multiple sets of backups and keeping backup data in a separate, offsite location are two easy solutions that immediately come to mind. What are you doing to ensure these backups are complete and usable? When was the last time you had your backups tested to confirm everything you think is protected really is?
5. Security Failures
Viruses, spyware, hackers, phishing emails, CEO fraud, and data theft. These are all real risks that cripple businesses at a moment’s notice. Los Angeles CPAs should carefully protect every piece of equipment connected to their network, especially if it contains sensitive data.
Basic protection includes implementing complex passwords, installing and maintaining antivirus software and malware protection, implementing the appropriate firewall (with intrusion protection services), and implementing dual factor authentication. CPA firms should annually reevaluate their cybersecurity policies and procedures to make any necessary upgrades or changes.
These are but five common pitfalls which can easily be avoided. With the help of either your internal IT team or an outside, experienced outsourced IT Service Provider, your CPA firm can proactively work on any outstanding issue before it’s too late.
What other mistakes do CPAs, Accountants, and Business Managers make when it comes to technology? Let us know your thoughts in the Comments box below or feel free to send me an email if you wish to discuss this more in-depth.