Built for Business

Built for businessWe love a good deal as much as the next person, but when it comes to something as important as your business it’s important that you make the right IT choices to suit your business needs and environment. Business owners tend to play with the idea of opting for consumer products rather than those that are built for business because they tend to be cheaper. Short term costs versus long term savings is definitely something to consider, along with compatibility, security and reliability. Below are a few elements you should consider before buying or upgrading the technology in your office space.

Compatibility

There is no doubt that buying or switching over to new technology can give your business a great competitive edge. It can not only increase productivity and extend mobility but it can even give you some spare hours in your regular work day.

All of this doesn’t mean that the process is stress free, but with products that are built for business it can be. Most business products are compatible with hundreds of the top business applications so that each new product fits into your current set-up and business environment seamlessly.

Software and integration testing is often a big part of all business products. Feedback generated from the field makes it easier to improve software and make it more reliable and easy to use for business at a high quality, which may not be the case for consumer products.

Security

It is becoming increasingly important for small businesses to protect their IT systems. According to the British Government, 84 percent of companies rely heavily on their IT systems. While most small businesses protect themselves against threats to their data and systems, 45 percent have suffered some kind of security problem. Business products often help small businesses improve their IT security by managing assets, backing up data and online protection. HP have outlined a few best practices successful businesses deploy to protect their sensitive data.

Reliability

Products such as netbooks are great for on the go computing, however the features may be limited for everyday business use. Many business products come armed with innovations that help to protect your hard drive, keep your applications running quickly and keeping your data safe. When considering buying a laptop it is important to consider a few key components before deciding on a purchase.

Selecting the right IT for your business is important – if you are looking for cost saving alternatives such as consumer goods, remember to consider the pros and cons. More importantly, evaluate the long term savings for your business rather than the short term costs.

HP are so confident that you will find their products right for you and your business that they are offering you the HP Business Promise. HP promise that you will find their ProBooks and Elitebooks unbeatable for, compatibility, security and reliability, If you don’t, HP will give you your money back!*

To find out more click here.

* terms and conditions apply, refund will be given on return of your HP qualifying product

Start-up Advice: Where to Look Online

web researchSince the Government announced measures to fuel “Startup Britain” there’s been a 25% increase in internet searches for start-up advice, according to credit reference agency Experian. This is definitely a good sign. The more curious people are about new entrepreneurial opportunities, the better for the UK economy as a whole.

Curiosity getting the better of me, I tried searching for ‘start a business’ on a search engine. There were plenty of decent resources including Business Zone, ByteStart and Startups amongst the top ranking, all of which offer plenty of advice to the UK’s budding entrepreneurs.

After a little more research it became obvious to me that not everyone thinks UK startup resources are up to scratch. Startup business Huddlebuy has said the Government’s online resource centre Business Link would have more value as a social networking community, making it far less costly to maintain.

While community-based information can play a role in helping new entrepreneurs get up and running, those looking for advice should go beyond search engines and use all of the support at their disposal. This includes face-to-face networking events and social media such as forums, blogs and Linkedin groups. These resources will often give details, advice and leads that you can’t get from polished online articles.

If you’re not sure what path to follow in the social media labarynth this list of the top 25 most influential people tweeting about entrepreneurship could be a good starting point. Although US based, it gives a flavour of the trends heading this way and provides buckets of inspiration for anyone new to the small business “scene”.

The Government Throws Down the Gauntlet to Small Business…

Entrepreaur coachingThere’s less than a week to go until the Government’s Innovation Launch Pad competition closes.

If you haven’t heard about the competition, don’t panic just yet. I have provided some crucial information below.

So here’s the deal: SMEs from around the UK are invited to submit a 500 word proposal explaining how their goods and services could help save the government money or deliver better outcomes. The best ideas will be handpicked by a community of civil servants.

Six of Britain’s top entrepreneurs, including serial investor Hermann Hauser, Autonomy’s Mike Lynch and venture capitalist Jon Moulton will help the selected companies to build their business proposals by coaching them through the process. The businesses will then present their ideas to a Dragons’ Den-style panel of senior government business officials, although I doubt there’ll be anything quite as quirky as Levi Roots’ Reggae Reggae Sauce winning them over.

All jokes aside, it is good to see the Government looking for ways to open its doors to the fantastic services and products our country’s small businesses have to offer, and hopefully the training from the veteran entrepreneurs will ensure only the best ideas get through to the final round.

The Government has thrown down the gauntlet with this latest competition and it is up to small businesses to grasp the opportunity in both hands.

If you need a little encouragement, I’ve got just the bit. In his latest article for The Financial Times Private Equity Investor Luke Johnson, warns of the dangers of harking back to the past in business and advises, “By all means treasure experience, and learn from your blunders. But don’t wallow in nostalgia, pining for what might have been. Rather, go ahead and seize the day no matter what.” Inspiring words for all….