IT is at the heart of a modern business. Companies today are defined by their ability to quickly access information and engage their customers through digital means. Auto dealerships are no different: Every department from sales to service to finance depend on computing systems fast and effective enough to cope with their needs.
As a leader at a dealership, it’s up to you to make sure your IT always rises to the occasion. One of the most severe threats to the organization may come as a surprise: growth and expansion. Your dealership’s progress may render current IT solutions inadequate, with resources stretched to the breaking point as the company makes the leap from small to medium size and beyond.
The consequences of infrastructure that fails to grow with your business can range from slow and unreliable data access to security risk. These issues should serve as motivation to seek out flexible IT solutions that will suit your present and future rather than keeping you stuck in the past.
Infrastructure evolution is a business concept
When your company scales up more rapidly than its infrastructure can handle, the seams may appear immediately. For instance, MIT Technology Review and Lenovo pointed out that when employees need access to solutions such as effective network-wide file sharing, and don’t get it from their IT departments, they may end up figuring out consumer-grade workarounds, creating redundancies and possible security deficiencies.
Your dealership may seek out cloud infrastructure as a response – the ability to flexibly utilize a large pool of resources is a more theoretically elegant approach to growth than purchasing a large amount of expensive on-premises infrastructure. However, as ZDNet indicated, determining whether to move to the cloud requires building a detailed business case. Balancing costs and needs – on both infrastructure horsepower and application access sides – should be part of your decision-making approach.
Customer needs aren’t staying still
Creating an engaging IT experience for customers as a dealership scales up doesn’t just mean recreating the same data storage and usage systems with slightly larger databases, or making existing tools accessible from more locations. EY research indicated that the auto industry has committed to delivering more seamless and intelligent customer experiences, even as they engage with brands across multiple touch points.
Businesses are dutifully looking for ways to store more information and engage in more advanced analytics processes. This, however, opens new cybersecurity challenges associated with keeping large databases. Unless processes designed to detect and combat cyberthreats grow alongside data storage and usage programs, your dealership may suffer from notable vulnerabilities.
Secure the present and future
Today, your dealership might be larger than it was in the past. Its IT resources may be straining at the seams, restricting good use of customer data or internal information. The answer is not just to scale up, but to create a road map incorporating future developments. Rather than doing this internally, you can reach out to a managed services provider that will ensure your present future infrastructure are equal to internal and external demands, and they don’t sacrifice security in the process.