09 August 2019
What IT governance means for SMBs in the digital era
Governance is neither empty corporate jargon nor the sole domain of big businesses. It’s essential for having control over your IT systems and software and is just as relevant to SMBs looking to maximise ROI in a digital world.
Here’s what you need to know about governance for SMBs.
What is governance?
Governance is a business term used to describe the framework you have in place to control and protect your IT infrastructure. Often used in a corporate context, governance also has an important role to play for SMBs.
Your governance strategy should express how your IT infrastructure can drive business performance and help achieve your business goals. It also sets out key IT processes (including security procedures) that govern not only how your IT function is operated, but also how your employee devices are managed.
Think of it as a roadmap for your IT department. It sets out a destination (your business goals) and provides step-by-step directions (your processes) that will safely and effectively get you where you need to be.
What does it mean for SMBs?
IT governance can bring considerable benefits to any SMB with a growing IT department. Implementing a good governance strategy is an effective way to prioritise and manage multiple IT projects. It will help you understand how much you’ll need to invest in an IT project relative to its potential ROI.
A governance strategy also helps you standardise IT processes and achieve consistency across your organisation. This enables you to repeat your successes and avoid making the same mistake twice as you replace instinctual decision-making or guesswork with tried-and-tested governance strategies to drive your IT processes.
Security is another important concern that SMBs often address in a governance strategy. This should cover everything from network security and data backup to how you work with cloud providers and the server hardware and devices that make up your IT infrastructure.
How does it apply to personal devices?
The proliferation of personal devices in recent years has caused businesses – large and small – to rethink how they manage mobile hardware. Cutting-edge devices like HP’s EliteBook 800 G6 series have been purpose-designed to provide everything required for dual work-and-home use. Security features like HP Sure Start Gen51, Sure Run2 and Sure View Gen33 combine with advanced collaboration and manageability features like noise cancellation, Sure Recover4, and optional 4G LTE5 to give users fast, secure access to the tools and capabilities to be productive anywhere, anytime.
As a result, many businesses have developed bring-your-own-device (BYOD) polices as part of their IT governance strategies. BYOD sets out a series of steps or processes that govern how professional data is secured and protected on mixed-use mobile devices.
This usually includes how the IT department rolls out and manages software downloads and updates, how network access is controlled and secured, and how data is protected when a device is lost or when an employee leaves the organisation.
In this way, governance is not abstract corporate jargon but a practical on-the-ground method SMBs can utilise to manage, standardise and optimise IT projects for maximum ROI. And that means better profitability across the board.