In this modern era, when numerous cloud-based apps provide clients with digital products or services, it’s more important than ever to set up a well-tuned network system to expedite your company processes. Without an adequate and robust technology solution, an enterprise may face poor customer or employee service issues. It is crucial that you know the importance of network infrastructure in the running of a company and that you invest in a reliable IT service provider if you want your organization to become more effective, productive, and operate with little to no downtime.
“The network infrastructure is the backbone, or foundation, of a healthy business. When you have a strong network system, you can achieve more goals, “
A company’s productivity and efficiency depend on more than just capable, hardworking employees and high-functioning equipment like computers and phones.
Most businesses rely on the network to process customer orders and maintain client records. Communication between your business and your customers is vital, and it depends significantly on your network infrastructure.
What is an IT Infrastructure?
Information technology infrastructure or IT infrastructure is an integrated infrastructure that provides services for enterprise technology, services, or IT environments. Technology is used for many business aspects today, including operations to the manufacture of goods or services. Optimizing technology through networked systems improves communication efficiency and increases efficiency. A good information technology infrastructure can assist with business goals and provide a competitive advantage for any industry.
IT infrastructure consists of all components that somehow play a role in overall IT and IT-enabled operations. It can be used for internal business operations or developing customer IT or business solutions.
Typically, a standard IT infrastructure consists of the following components:
This is the “physical” part of an IT infrastructure and comprises all the elements necessary to support the basic functioning of the machines and devices constituting the infrastructure itself.
Servers, computers, storage and data centers, switches, hubs and routers, as well as all other equipment such as the power, cooling, cabling and dedicated rooms.
It refers to all the applications used by the enterprise both for internal purposes and to provide its services to customers. Software includes web servers, Enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer relationship management (CRM), productivity applications, and the operating system (OS).
The OS is the most important software component and is responsible for managing the hardware itself and connecting the physical resources to the network infrastructure.
Although is not strictly necessary for an IT infrastructure to function, the network is essential to establish internal and external communication of all elements and devices.
The network part includes all the hardware and software elements necessary to ensure network enablement, internet connectivity, firewall and security. It ensures that personnel get access to stored and transferred data only from strictly controlled access points to reduce the risk of data theft or damage.
Since they contribute to constituting the enterprise environment and guarantee its functions, associated personnel and processes such as ITOps or DevOps are also part of an IT infrastructure.
Human users, such as network administrators (NA), developers, designers, and end users with access to any IT appliance or service are also part of an IT infrastructure, specifically with the advent of user-centric IT service development.
Traditional Vs. Cloud Infrastructures
All the components mentioned above that constitute a traditional infrastructure are usually owned by the enterprise itself and managed within their own facilities.
Needless to say, the larger the IT infrastructure, the more space, power, personnel, and money will be needed to run it. Today, part of this infrastructure can be virtualized and rented from third-party services to cut the costs.
Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) are all relatively new options that allow businesses to rent software, infrastructure, services and human resources from external vendors who will deliver them using the internet. All the components rented are hosted and managed in cloud servers that employ their own IT infrastructures.
Since all these resources are built on virtualization technology, they can easily be scaled up or down as the needs of the business employing them change.
Why a new IT infrastructure will improve business growth
Regardless of their size and industry, companies have to prioritize their IT infrastructure above all aspects, especially in today’s business world, where technology has a firm hold on everything. According to a Fuse Technology Group survey, companies have started investing a considerable sum of their capital in their IT infrastructure, specifically in cloud computing(34%), social media(36), mobile devices(37%), data analytics(43%), and business management software(50%).
Does your existing IT infrastructure help your organization thrive, or does it create unwanted obstacles on your pathway to growth? Lets take a look at some reasons why a robust IT infrastructure is vital to your business’s growth.
” When your business grows, the demands of your employees and customers also grow, ignoring the value of updating your IT infrastructure based on your company’s needs and preferences can be detrimental to long-term success. “
It gives your customers a lot of value.
A business’s primary goal is to provide its customers with value through its services and products. A company’s IT infrastructure and website play a critical role in achieving this. For instance, a well-developed company website provides customers and potential prospects the proper support and information whenever they ask for it.
In addition, a business’s support team can answer any product-related questions the customers have, which adds more value to the company’s brand while improving the shopping experience tenfold.
It allows you to increase your revenue.
A solid IT infrastructure will enable you to maximize your company’s revenue as it removes the silo mentality, allowing existing technologies to do their thing more effectively and efficiently. For example, you can move your IT infrastructure to the cloud and reap the benefits that come along with doing so.
These include; interoperability, streamlined processes, better data management, security, accessibility, and much more. In the end, doing so will allow you to reduce operational costs and deliver quality services, leading to more revenue in the future.
It allows you to collect data in real-time.
A solid IT infrastructure will enable you to gather data in real-time, improving how you conduct your business operations. For example, insurance companies utilize GPS and sensors to track and monitor a vehicle’s speed and any damages that occur to it.
Another example of real-time data collection is that of the manufacturing industry. Businesses use RFID tags to track the movement of goods while they are going through various supply chains. In the end, building a solid IT infrastructure will allow you to operate quickly and more efficiently.
It allows you to improve your employees’ productivity levels.
According to a study by the University of Warwick, satisfied employees are 12% more productive, while unsatisfied ones are 10% less. Even though satisfaction might be subjective, business owners can build a happy, healthy workplace environment by giving their workforce a safe online environment and the right tools to complete tasks without bogging down.
Doing so will allow their employees to perform clerical, managerial, technical, and sales-related tasks more confidently and efficiently.
In the end, a solid IT ensures that customer data, employee data, and other confidential information are protected with the latest security protocols to build an ever-lasting reputation as an excellent place to work. Additionally, the more satisfied the employees, the harder they will work to achieve your business’s unified goals.
It reduces downtime.
Failure, outages, and downtime can compromise your business operations, put your IT infrastructure in danger, and cause your business to lose money in the long term. That said, most companies are prone to experiencing such issues because they still haven’t updated or upgraded their existing IT infrastructure model, harming their long-term profitability in the process.
So, for instance, switching to a cloud-based IT infrastructure can drastically reduce downtime, lower maintenance costs, and enhance system manageability.
It gives your Speed to Market a welcome boost.
A company that can react quickly will eventually reap the benefits of setting up sales offices within growing territories. Doing so will enable them to fulfill customer demands, provide seamless support, handle a surge of online transactions, increase your products’ speed to market, and much more.
However, such a thing will never be possible without a solid IT infrastructure, especially if your goal is to achieve the aforementioned purposes. After all, without connectivity, manageability, and security a reliable IT infrastructure brings, your customer will generally face issues when purchasing items, won’t receive the support that satisfies them.