When did you last review your IT set-up? 

IT audit for 2023 hand and computer

Start the year 2023 as you mean to go on.

A lot can change in business in one year. The systems and support that you had in place in January may not be fit for purpose today. As we approach the year-end, savvy businesses take this opportunity to start planning for the year ahead. Here’s how.

Secure Endpoints

As predicted in our 2022 trend report, the hybrid work model is here to stay. Whilst there are many benefits to this flexible approach, for example, attracting a larger pool of talent, reduced costs and a happier workforce – there are also some serious risks to consider. The corresponding increase in work locations, users, WiFi access points, potential non-staff access, and endpoints is perilous. 

It is essential to ensure that each endpoint, laptop, desktop, phone, printer, scanner, and touchpoint is captured within your cybersecurity defences. A must-have tool to manage the security of all your endpoints is Microsoft (MS) Defender. MS Defender safeguards your organisation against malicious threats posed by email, nefarious links (URLs) and even collaboration tools like Zoom.

Level Up Your Passwords 

In today’s digital economy, having just one password to access an account, software or backend is outdated and inadequate. Level up your security with Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) which adds an extra security layer to protect your data. 

What is MFA? MFA is an authentication method that requires the user to provide two or more verification factors to gain access to a resource such as an application. For example, a password combined with a PIN that is sent to your phone.

This extra feature is your fallback security blanket. Your MSP will happily enable MFA across your systems.

Team Members Review 

Staff naturally come and go across a year with extended leave, new hires, retirees and leavers. Multiple IT and security breaches can occur when fluctuating co-workers are mismanaged. 

IT considerations for new employees? 

  • Machines must be set up correctly to align with the company security policy.
  • Devices passed down from other staff members must be cleared first, reset and encrypted. 
  • Sep up permissions and MFA. 
  • Ensure licences are up to date for all new team members. 
  • Consider the security implications of working remotely with additional endpoints like home printers and phones. 
  • Access to all the appropriate folders, software and resources.

Likewise, when a staff member moves on, the support team must be proactive to make necessary adjustments. Dormant users no longer need access to sensitive company data and must be removed.  

The hybrid workforce prefers to access work at the office, from a coffee shop, a train and at home. When properly managed, access and protective measures will work from anywhere.

Knowledge is Power 

By next year, your team could be a well-oiled machine: efficient and super-productive, utilising all the MS tools at their disposal. Your company will save time, money and headspace, which allows you to focus on growing the business. 

The Sleepless Learning platform gives your team bespoke bite-sized training that helps you manage office tools and your time more effectively. Therefore gaining expert knowledge tailored to your specific industry. 

Tip: Focus on the applications that will benefit your business the most, be that Project, SharePoint or Excel. Set the expectation that everyone is trained to a company standard. For those that want to delve deeper and pad out their skillset, dozens of training videos are available at no extra cost. 

IT Audit 

The year-end is an opportunity to review your infrastructure and software.

Ask yourself: 

  • Where are your backups? 
  • Are your licences up to date? 
  • Have you updated your software to the latest version? 
  • How many users do you have?
  • Is your internet connectivity business standard?
  • When did you last review user access to your valuable data? 
  • Is your IT support adequate for your business today?
  • Are my IT solutions and devices working cohesively together?  
  • How secure is your data?
  • Are your systems fit for purpose? 

Your MSP will help you review the company’s infrastructure and provide a comprehensive report on your system’s vulnerabilities and inefficiencies.

Consistency is key

In our experience, the most successful businesses work cohesively under a unified system. A system where all devices adhere to the company’s protocols. Software, endpoints, and locations are controlled and authentication is standard across the company. When employees are proficient in professional tools and applications, productivity will soar. This will leave you with time to do what you do best. To grow your business. 

Talk to your MSP

Partnering with an MSP like Sleepless can take the hassle away from your busy team and place these IT tasks in the hands of the experts. We believe things work best when they work as one. Sleepless will take the time to really understand your business and find the best solutions for your unique needs.