Managing your technology shouldn’t be the last thing on your company’s holiday shopping list

  • The holiday season is in full swing, and many businesses, like yours, are busy preparing for the surge of shoppers and the rush of activity to serve those customers. However, one crucial aspect often overlooked is the proactive management of the company’s technology systems and processes. While IT management may seem like a minor detail compared to other holiday preparations, failing to manage your technology in a proactive manner can lead to major issues and setbacks during this critical time for businesses.

Think about it with me for a moment. What percentage of your overall yearly sales are at risk of your IT systems go down at this “most wonderful time of the year?”

A well-managed IT infrastructure is crucial for any company’s holiday profitability and success. It’s amazing how dependent your holiday profitability and processes are upon your IT systems.

  • Managing customer orders
  • Managing inventory
  • Processing payments
  • Tracking sales data
  • Tracking order deliveries

…and that’s just the first five things on the list, right?

Technology plays a vital role in delivering smooth operations during the holiday season. Without on-demand access to your IT-enabled workflow, everything grinds to such a standstill that even Santa’s Chief Elf couldn’t get things rolling again.

But staying on top of technology management during the holidays isn’t just about your current workflow. It’s also about your plans to do better this holiday season than last year. IT management helps you to scale your IT capability in line with your needs more quickly, keeping up with the increasing demand and expectations of customers during this busy time.

One of the main reasons why businesses neglect technology management during the holidays is because they prioritize other tasks that seem to impact sales more directly. However, this can be a costly mistake in the long run. A poorly managed IT infrastructure can result in:

  • system failures
  • security breaches
  • downtime
  • unhappy customers
  • loss of revenue

To avoid these damaging scenarios, it’s crucial to prioritize technology management and make sure your systems are up to the dual challenge of higher process volume and increased cybercriminal attack attempts. This preparation should include regular maintenance checks, updating software and security systems, and having a reliable backup plan in case of any unforeseen circumstances.

Furthermore, proper technology management can also lead to cost savings in the long run. By regularly maintaining systems and updating software, businesses can avoid costly breakdowns that may require emergency repairs or replacements.

Need a partner for your ongoing technology management? Our team can help. Keep reading.

Protecting E-Commerce in the holiday season
With the increase in online shopping during the holidays, businesses must also ensure that their e-commerce platforms are running smoothly and efficiently. This involves optimizing website performance, managing server capacity, and ensuring a secure online shopping experience for customers.

Responsive IT troubleshooting and tech answers during the holidays
Another crucial aspect of technology management during the holidays is having a reliable IT support team in place. With the potential increase in technical issues and challenges during this busy time, it’s important to have a dedicated team that can promptly address any problems that may arise. This will help minimize downtime and keep business operations running smoothly.

Maintaining high employee productivity during the holiday rush
Having a well-managed IT infrastructure can also positively impact employee productivity and morale during the holiday season. A smooth and efficient technology system means less stress for employees, allowing them to focus on their tasks and provide better service to customers.

In summary
While managing technology may not be the most exciting aspect of holiday preparations, it can’t be overlooked. Instead of treating technology management as an afterthought during the holiday season, businesses should view it as an integral part of their overall holiday strategy. By prioritizing technology management and taking proactive measures to ensure a well-functioning IT infrastructure, you can position your business to best avoid potential setbacks and keep up with the demands of customers during this critical time.
This holiday season, make sure to add technology management to the top of your to-do list and get set up for more success and lower stress this holiday.

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Keep your business safe this holiday season: password safety tips for your employees

The holiday season is upon us, and for many businesses, it’s the busiest time of the year. Amidst the chaos of long lines and increased foot traffic in your business, the last thing you want to worry about is a security breach.
The bad news is that a single compromised password can take the jolly “Ho! Ho! Ho!” right out of your profitable holiday season.

This time of year is known for an increase in cybercrime targeting small to mid-size businesses. In fact, one study showed that attempted ransomware attacks in November and December were 70% higher than in January and February of the same holiday season.1 The Grinch is just as busy as Santa this time of year.


Three reasons:

  • During the holidays, businesses often hire seasonal workers to help with the workload. These seasonal workers are given temporary access to company systems but often do not go through the same cybersecurity awareness training as the company’s regular staff. As a result, the seasonal staff are more susceptible to an array of ways cybercriminals try to get unsuspecting employees to provide them with access to company data.
  • The high volume of transactions that take place during the holiday season provides a corresponding high-traffic environment across the company’s IT systems. This mass usage of systems creates an opportunity for hackers to exploit vulnerable access points and steal sensitive data.
  • Many employees are distracted by the holiday rush and may not be as vigilant when it comes to security protocols. They may be more likely to fall for phishing scams or click on suspicious links, putting their personal information and company data at risk.

Because you are a diligent business owner, you already know that employee education is essential in protecting your company’s operational and customer data.

That education starts with the BIG BUILDING BLOCK of password security training. Here are some password safety tips to ensure your employees are doing their part to keep your business safe.

  1. Strong Passwords: The easiest way to prevent unauthorized access to your business’s data is to require strong passwords. Encourage your employees to use a minimum of 10 characters, combining letters, numbers, and symbols. The best practice is to use a password manager to generate (and remember) strong passwords for you.

Avoid using pet names, birthdays, or common phrases as they are easily guessed by hackers. In addition, require your employees to change their passwords at least once every quarter.

  1. Two-Factor Authentication: Two-factor authentication (2FA) adds an extra layer of security to login processes by asking for a second form of verification. Common forms of 2FA include a code sent to the user’s phone or email, or the use of a fingerprint scanner. Enable 2FA on all company accounts, including email, financial, and point-of-sale systems.
  2. Don’t Share Passwords: Employees should never share their passwords, regardless of the circumstances. This includes sharing passwords with coworkers. Additionally, employees should avoid writing down their passwords and storing them in easy-to-find locations. Instead, encourage employees to use the password management software you have in place to keep track of passwords. (If you don’t currently have enterprise-grade password management tools in place, we should talk soon.)
  3. Be Wary of Phishing Attempts: Hackers often use phishing attempts to gain access to sensitive data. Employees should be skeptical of all emails and texts asking for sensitive information such as passwords, social security numbers, or credit card information. Encourage employees to verify the authenticity of the request by calling the sender or checking the company’s website for information.
  4. Update Software Regularly: Security updates are released regularly for all software systems, including operating systems, web browsers, and apps. These updates often contain security patches to fix vulnerabilities that can be exploited by hackers. Encourage employees to update software regularly and enable automatic updates where possible.

Cybersecurity threats are a year-round issue, but the risk is higher during the holiday season. Encourage employees to follow these password safety tips to protect your business’s sensitive data. Remember to lead by example, making sure you follow these tips and update your business’s security policies regularly. By emphasizing security awareness, you can work to keep your business safe during the busiest time of the year and beyond.

Just one more thing…

One of the reasons that businesses like yours struggle with providing cyber-awareness training and supervision for current and temporary staff during the holiday season is understaffed IT departments. After all, your IT team deserves a break during the holiday season too, right? If your business is under-resourced in cybersecurity personnel, let’s talk about helping you get the protection your business needs throughout this holiday season.

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