A business can only be as successful as the tools it uses to conduct that business, which means that having the right technology at your disposal is vital to your ability to please your customers and succeed in the long term. Trying to make do with outdated or inefficient technology may save you money upfront, but the effects of this kind of solution can cause major problems down the line.
So, how will you know when it’s time to upgrade? Below, the members of Young Entrepreneur Council share 11 clear signs that indicate it’s time to update your current technology and improve your productivity.
11 Signs Your Company Is Due for a Tech Upgrade
- When security patches stop releasing.
- When your team is growing.
- When something drains a lot of time.
- When your competition is outpacing you.
- When customers ask for services you can’t provide.
- When cart abandonment is high.
- When simple processes become complicated.
- When your mobile site has a high bounce rate.
- When you see a decline in productivity.
- When you're seeing too many printed documents.
- When your current tech isn’t fast enough to keep up.
1. When Security Patches Stop Releasing
When the security patches stop releasing, you know you’re long overdue for a system upgrade. For instance, Google products generally guarantee three years of security patches. Therefore, plan for device upgrades every two and a half years to avoid running into security issues at the end of the product’s life cycle. —Tyler Gallagher, Regal Assets
2. When Your Team Is Growing
Your business may need a tech upgrade if your team is growing. I’ve run into business owners who stalled out because their tech couldn’t scale with the growth of their team. If you notice that your team is growing at an accelerated rate, make sure your tech can handle the influx of new activity. Better service providers can always offer you tools that match your scale and intent. —John Brackett, Smash Balloon LLC
3. When Something Drains a Lot of Time
The best way to know it’s time for a tech update, be it hardware or software, is when something drains a lot of time. Whether moving to the cloud or getting rid of that old printer, it’s important to look at the things that cause issues on a daily basis and then set out to fix them. Fixing these things will only improve overall efficiency and give you time back. —Maria Thimothy, OneIMS
4. When Your Competition Is Outpacing You
There are so many amazing technologies right now, and you might find that your competition is able to reduce their overhead or, in some cases, completely redraft their revenue arm or administration arm due to their software applications. Assign one person on your team to research competitive software and audit your processes annually. —Matthew Capala, Alphametic
5. When Customers Ask for Services You Can’t Provide
When customers start asking for automated or digital services, or even payment methods that you cannot provide, it may be time to look at the tech backing your operation. I try to look for technology that works within our current workflow rather than those that overhaul the entire way we do things, no matter how good they may sound. Extensive overhauls are best done with small teams first. —Salvador Ordorica, The Spanish Group LLC
6. When Cart Abandonment Is High
When your cart abandonment is high, your website or app likely isn’t compatible with most operating systems. Likewise, if SEO doesn't grow or excel despite high sales, initiate a major overhaul in software or hardware, depending on your priority. —Daisy Jing, Banish
7. When Simple Processes Become Complicated
One sign your company needs a tech upgrade is when simple processes become complicated. As your team grows, you’ll need to use a wide range of tools to accomplish day-to-day assignments. Eventually, some of these tools will start to work against each other, which could cause issues. So, when you begin seeing formerly speedy processes slow down, it may be time to upgrade your tech. —Chris Christoff, MonsterInsights
8. When Your Mobile Site Has a High Bounce Rate
You might need a tech upgrade if your website is not mobile-friendly and you see a high bounce rate on your mobile site. If your website loads slowly or looks bad on mobile, your audience will get frustrated and give it about 10 seconds before they move on to your competitor’s site. Do an audit of your mobile site and update it right away. —Syed Balkhi, WPBeginner
9. When You See a Decline in Productivity
A common sign that you need to upgrade is when your employees’ productivity has gone down. This can happen when they’re using old systems and products that no longer have any support. Also, ask your employees if they’re struggling. With their feedback, you can pick the right tools and upgrades that create a positive impact on your business. —Blair Williams, MemberPress
10. When You’re Seeing Too Many Printed Documents
If your office has too many printed documents, it’s time for you to get a tech upgrade. With the advanced use of the internet, most businesses are going paperless. This not only keeps things organized but also boosts efficiency. Being technologically up-to-date gives you an edge over your competitors and helps you achieve success faster. —Josh Kohlbach, Wholesale Suite
11. When Your Current Tech Isn’t Fast Enough to Keep Up
One sign that it’s time to upgrade is when your existing technology isn’t fast or productive enough for your team to keep up with their work, including fulfilling orders, communicating with customers or having efficient virtual meetings. When you notice this type of lag, identify what your greatest need is and research the options. You may need to upgrade your software or transition to a new platform. —Kalin Kassabov, ProTexting