Telecoms and network technologies for SMEs: The strategic path

The modern day commercial environment continues to place increased pressure on your business to increase efficiency, flexibility...

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The modern day commercial environment continues to place increased pressure on your business to increase efficiency, flexibility and responsiveness.

A fundamental requirement in delivering such benefits to your business is a robust, reliable and flexible information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure.

Moreover, this infrastructure should not place crippling cost burdens to the business, but should instead support fundamental improvements to productivity and customer service.


There exists rapid development of ICT and suppliers attribute many assurances to what they offer. Yet inevitably, in some cases, these promises will not be delivered, leading not just to unfulfilled expectations but, more importantly, to problems for the business. The ramifications of making the wrong choice of ICT are extremely serious. By virtue of relative size, your business will typically operate with much less margin for error and you will have less opportunity to recover from a bad call.


This supplement will advise businesses such as yours on how to avoid falling into technological pitfalls. It will look at the latest developments in ICT and how they pertain to small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in general.


It will offer advice on how such technology can be acquired and implemented to realise true business advantage. Specifically we will look, from a business-improving perspective, at broadband, IP networks, telecoms products and services, the case for managed services, LANs and WANs and also the latest in wireless products and services.


We will, however, give equal prominence to how your company should engage with your ICT suppliers and how to formulate a return on your investment in ICT.


This supplement will give IT professionals such as yourself an insight as to how you can develop IT strategies that result in business advantage. Research carried out by Computer Weekly in association with BT suggests that such insights are necessary. The research showed that only half of SMEs in the UK have a formal ICT strategy in place.


Of those who had implemented one this strategy is – in two out of every five companies – developed by personnel external to the IT department. In other words, strategic IT thinking is being carried out by those not best suited to understand exactly what contribution IT can make across the business.


Fundamentally, this supplement will show you that the optimum telecoms and networking infrastructure will have both crucial internal and external benefits. We will leave you with the knowledge to improve efficiency and thus be in a position to better combat the ever-increasing competition and, most crucially, respond better to the ever-demanding needs of your customers.


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Click here for Part One of the SME supplement >>

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