Lessons on Home Maintenance Can Help Manufacturers

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So, I was cleaning out my basement today to get ready to put in more storage for our newest member of the family that is coming soon.  The world is changing in the Ellingson household; new furniture, new crib, new floor, new paint, new cabinets downstairs, and clearing out the old is all part of the process of trying to get everything ready in time. Luckily for me, I have friends who can lend me a hand, tell me if anything isn’t up to code, or how to make sure the house doesn’t fall down all around us.  I can’t know everything, but I can bring in extra support.

In business this philosophy seems to hold true for technology.

The landscape of business and technology is always changing. Compliance standards are always getting longer. The latest ITAR (International Traffic in Arms Regulations) compliance document is a 591 page snore-fest (read only if you can’t sleep at night).  So, how does any owner ever truly expect to know everything, and comply with it all?  Simple answer is you can’t do it alone.

Managed Services for manufacturing is something similar, I can’t know everything. Sure I could do it all myself, but in the end it just leaves me exhausted, and not 100% sure if everything was done right.  In my house there are a lot of places like this, I did my best, but unfortunately didn’t know exactly what I was doing.  Years later I’m staring at all the things I’ll need to fix if we ever move, floorboards that don’t quite line up, a railing that wobbles quite a bit, etc.  If I had asked my friends for help back in the day, or not let my pride get in the way, most of these little problems that I see now could have been avoided.   I wouldn’t have had to worry as much about a code inspection before we 2-4-6 our way out of this place.

If you try to do everything yourself, regardless of how good you are, it might work for you at first, it might even look great at first, but over time that new shininess wears off and you are left with a rather run down looking network.  The amount of money I’m going to have to spend, just to get ready for an inspection or sale is going to make everything I’ve already done obsolete.  Same principle applies for a business. If you don’t truly understand all the aspects of technology, over time, you are going to realize you just spent a whole lot of money for basically nothing.

Make sure you establish a good relationship with a Managed Services Provider you can trust.

It might end up costing you a little more in the short-term, but the long term gains outweigh the initial costs.  I wouldn’t trust just anyone to work on my house. You shouldn’t trust just anyone to work on your network.  “I know one thing: that I know nothing” –Socrates

Compliance and efficiency of your network work much the same, errors made early multiple throughout the years and become more detrimental the longer you go without fixing issues originally caused by lack of knowledge.  These issues usually manifest themselves as lost productivity due to outages, or potential fines due to not maintaining compliance.