Just as an automobile generally delivers improved gas mileage following a tune-up, your employees will often demonstrate improved efficiency after an IT audit. During IT audits, computer consulting services check for system weaknesses and inefficiencies. Once you understand these "Achilles' heels" in your IT managed services, you can work to correct them. A sharper competitive edge, improved productivity and reduced labor costs are just a few of the benefits you can see from an IT audit.

To help you determine whether your IT systems could use a bit of tweaking, we list common signs of IT risks and inefficiencies below. If you've spotted these warning signs in your organization, consider bringing in an information technology consulting firm to ignore and amend weaknesses.

1. Lack of Standardization across IT Systems

Information technology consulting gurus report that organizations waste money when their IT managed services are inconsistent. To explain how non-standard IT systems can affect the bottom line, consider the wasted time employees spend translating different versions of the same document. If everyone in the office had the same version of Word, that lag time would disappear. Another common inconsistency involves software updates. If your firm lacks a consistent "patch day" when employees' computers are automatically updated, your machines are more likely to become infected with viruses, which in turn leads to employee downtime.

2. Poor Communication between Company Leadership and IT Professionals

In their report "IT Risk – Closing the Gap," PriceWaterhouseCooper discovered that 76 percent of company board members demonstrated that they had a good understanding of the IT risks facing their firms. In stark contrast, just 32 percent of internal auditors concurred that board members totally understood company IT risks. From this, we can extrapolate that company leaders are often unaware of risks in IT systems and do not realize it. If you feel your company leaders could better steer your company if they had a full understanding of IT risks, consider arranging an IT audit. Information technology consulting specialists can thoroughly assess IT risks and then explain audit results to the board in easy-to-understand layperson's terms.

3. Outdated Hardware Data Storage

The days of server storage closets have passed. You no longer need to rely on pricey, finicky on-site servers to back up your company data. Instead, progressive companies are switching to cloud-based or virtualized systems, both of which are more cost-effective than traditional server setups. When switching to cloud-based data storage, many companies find the help of a computer consulting services firm invaluable. An information technology consulting professional knows the ins and outs of navigating cloud services and can help make the transition as seamless as possible while safeguarding the security of your firm's sensitive data.

If you recognize the inefficiencies we've listed here, it's a good time to think about retooling your IT managed services. From improved data storage to increased understanding between board members and IT managers, an IT audit offers many benefits.

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