When New Technology Doesn’t Compute: Issues with Integration

In the modern business world, any conversation about management and growth is going to touch on money or technology, and often both. Although the argument made in favor of upgrading technology is compelling, the hitch in the entire conversation is that it hovers over the end result: investing in the best software, moving to cloud, and most importantly ensuring that the capital investment actually works properly after the purchase.

While the distant picture of success is attractive, it’s the near future issues of technology integration that are often not talked about which can hinder your business from tapping into the full potential and inherent value of that technology acquisition.

The business-technology headlines, bylines, advertisements, and promises usually focus on the future. You always have a picture painted for you about how the up-and-coming device will change the game. All the common buzz-phrases still apply:

"Use technology to catch up to your competition!"

The benefits of investing in technology for your business are hard to deny, but they will never live up to the hype if you don’t first consider all of the planning, and necessary set-up work required for integrating new or updated technology into your office.

Resistance to Change

Integrating new technology into an office is going to require more than technical know-how, it’s also going to require training of both management and staff. Resistance to change underlies many common gripes heard around an office environment. Learning new processes and programs can be frightening on an individual level, especially for employees who may have spent a lot of time mastering a previous software or process and are "set in their ways". Regardless of how easy or difficult a proposed change is going to be for staff, abandoning the comfort of the old runs the risk of ruffling some feathers in the work place.

New technology will require adaptations among inter-office work groups and procedures. New software can often require levels of authorization, shifts in duties, or coordination of efforts.

Compatibility

Another major headache involved in new technology integration is troubleshooting compatibility issues. Although most new software and hardware professes compatibility with older versions or other brands, the actuality is rarely as seamless as one would hope. When data doesn’t translate from one tracking system completely or legibly, will you have the staff, expertise or time to troubleshoot the issue without disrupting another aspect of the business? Will your data be recoverable if integration fails? If old hardware can’t support new software, can you afford to update your entire system?

The Integration "Solution"

The best technology integration solution is itself an integration; a person whose experience and expertise is matched by a complete understanding of the business, clientele, employee needs, and production goals. Unfortunately, this person is not easy to find.

Specialized expertise: one of information technology and one of your particular business, is usually segregated. The business owner, project manager, or individual employee is sometimes the only one who truly understands a particular processes, function, or goals needing to be accomplished. Combine this fragmented flow of understanding with attempting to integrate a new technology product, and the yield is often a technology never realizing its full value to the business.

On the flip side, the troubleshooting abilities and IT expertise are often siloed by in-house or outsourced IT staff, whose concerns for business and project management rarely match their understanding of information technology.

The Continuous Integration Solution

By no means should this message be read as a warning against digitizing. When laid out in so many words, the process of upgrading the tech aspect of your business sounds exhausting, but it doesn’t have to be.

The best solution lies in bringing the right help with you as you integrate new technology and processes into your business. The staff at Continuous Networks is a prime example of that kind of help. While our forte is in IT support, our level of service extends into learning the ins-and-outs of your business, and composing creative and innovative solutions to your business needs. A combination of personal investment and technological expertise makes Continuous an ideal integration partner.

We stand by our motto, "We make IT personal."