Does your business strategy take technology consolidation into account?

Large technology companies are masters of technology consolidation, think Microsoft, Salesforce, and Apple.  They watch new technologies emerge from other groups, and then buy or replicate that functionality.  Over time, all the DIFFERENT technologies you need to accomplish a goal now show up under a single integrated application from a vendor.

Your business strategy needs to take this technology consolidation into account.  Unfortunately, many IT groups justify their staffing and budgets on the complex web of systems, applications, and integrations they support.  When technology consolidation comes up, there is pushback, as this would be “too costly,” and there would not be sufficient return.

The ROI comes from a reduced internal IT footprint in the staffing and technology areas.  A reality that many IT departments do not want to discuss with their executive counterparts.  As a business executive or technology leader, it is imperative that you review your overall IT portfolio and staffing annually.

Here are three areas to look into consolidating:

1.  Any email add-on services if you are utilizing Office 365.

Microsoft has developed an ability to adapt and build/buy add-on services as they become essential to the product’s core functionality.  Today, you can purchase a Microsoft Business 365 subscription, which will provide all the archiving, filtering, and compliance tools needed in 99% of businesses.  This single subscription costs less than all the add-on fees, and it will be fully integrated and manageable in a single spot.

2.  Marketing toolsets

The innovation in social and Internet-based selling is amazing.  The tools available for these efforts have similarly expanded dramatically.  Often, different departments utilize one-off tools without consulting others (or IT!), which causes a lot of duplication and lost profit.  Most CRM platforms today offer the email, social, and tracking features you need directly in their applications.  Consolidating these tools under a single platform can increase marketing effectiveness and overall ROI.

3.  IT Support Staffing

Technology consolidation has also simplified many of the complex tasks associated with IT support.  Many of the “issues” that required internal support have gone away.  As complexity is reduced and standardization (I think Office 365) increases, the ability to partner outside your organization for IT support is very attractive and profitable.

Technology has always come in waves, and right now, we are in a technology consolidation phase as larger (tech) companies are actively acquiring new functionality and integrating it into their existing offerings.  This should translate into LESS complexity and MORE profits for you as a business executive!

If you’re looking to consolidate, simplify, and improve, Stringfellow has got you covered.