What is the role of information technology in business? Information technology or the IT department is a crucial part of any company of business as they monitor and manage almost everything that is to do with information technology and communication systems.
The IT department is at the epicentre of the building and maintenance of communications networks for businesses small and large. Not many companies, big or small, could survive without a good IT department making them imperative to a business’s day to day existence. From sending an email, to changing a password, accessing databases and everything in between IT are there to help every step of the way. IT in business is ultimately to help the business be more efficient and productive. It has a number of different roles including but not limited to:
- Helping the company be more productive, time = money.
- Optimising business performance
- Safeguarding data and troubleshooting
- Saving the business money
- Improving customer experience, satisfaction and communication
- Streamlining communication systems
- Enhancing managerial decision-making
- Helping the business expand globally
- Providing staff access to company information
In this article, we are going to look at hat is the role of information technology in business and what makes this department so important to have a safe business.
Safeguarding data and information
The ultimate goal of safeguarding is to protect data from compromise. The IT department will ensure data Safeguarding, meaning industry-standard safeguards are in place, company-wide to protect against the destruction, loss, misuse, unauthorised disclosure, or alteration of the company-related data or employee confidential information. IT also has to ensure they are abiding by data-protection laws through safeguarding important information from corruption, compromise or loss.
Examples of data breaches could be hackers stealing information or misused/shared personal data in regards to the company of the employees.
Troubleshooting of problems
Troubleshooting refers to problem-solving in the digital world. Troubleshooting can be applied to a number of different things such as the repairing of failed digital products or processes on a PC or a system. When a problem is troubleshot, a systematic and logical search is carried out for the source of a problem with the aim to solve it and make the product or process fully operational again. Troubleshooting is also used to identify the symptoms when something is wrong.
A competent IT department in any business is the first port of call when it comes to an issue or problem with a computer. If an employee has locked themselves out of their computer, forgotten a password or cannot get access to a particular drive, for example, IT is usually a quick call away from getting this issue fixed.
Security and the maintenance of databases
The IT department is responsible for the efficiency and security procedures of the business are up to standard. Hornetsecurity.com defines IT security as
‘intending to prevent the manipulation of data and systems by unauthorised third parties. The meaning behind this is those socio-technical systems, i.e. people and technology, within companies/organisations and their data are protected against damage and threats’.
IT is also there for the creation, maintenance and administration of databases for things such as businesses sales transactions, financial records, product catalogues, trends, customer profiles and marketing activities to name but a few.
The management of cloud-based solutions
So what is a cloud-based solution? It is an on-demand service for almost anything and everything you can ‘save’ such as computer network information, storage, applications or resources accessed via the internet and through an external provider’s shared cloud ( servers that are accessed over the Internet,) computing infrastructure. Businesses large and small, right from the local candle shop to industry giants such as Microsoft and Google use cloud-based solutions to keep control of their digital or physical offices and employees globally.
Information technology is able to analyse specific data and help to plan the business journey accordingly using the trends and information presented in data. IT can also efficiently equip businesses with plentiful tools which can solve challenging business obstacles and help to plan the future growth of the company. In this day and age, digital marketing is something that businesses simply can’t live without as we have moved to the online world and users have access to the net 24/7 from their smartphone devices. The internet provides a digital marketing platform that allows businesses to promote their products or services to the global market, all who can see products sitting in the comfort of their own remote office or home.
Quick and effective communication
The beauty of being in the 21st century for business is the ease of communication. We live in an era where you can usually contact a business in an instant. The success of a company largely depends on understanding its customer’s needs, behaviours, buying trends, behaviours and satisfaction scales. Efficient and quick communication is the best mechanism when it comes to dealing with customer demands, problems and solutions. The beauty of information technology is that it allows businesses to communicate with potentially millions of customers in real-time on a global scale. IT provides countless ways to communicate with customers without them even having to leave the house. Such channels include emails, social media chats video calls, webinars, member forums, email newsletters or through the smartphone.
Did you realise what the role of information technology in business is?
It’s probably safe to say, that it is impossible to achieve long term business success without harbouring the benefits of information technology in the heavily digital age we live in. The IT department has their fingers in a number of pies, and manage everything from improving communications (internal and external), the managing of inventories, management, decision making, databases and management as well as employee/ customer relationship management.