Why Is Updating Technology So Important?
The spinning “wheel of death” pop-ups that say you need an update, and computer freezes are all annoying. But the bigger problem with outdated technology is the huge risk it poses to your veterinary practice.
The following are just a few of the adverse effects from using outdated technology.
- Security risks,
- Data leaks and loss,
- Lack of efficiency and flexibility,
- Reduced productivity, and
- A ruined professional image.
What Are The 4 Most Common Problems From Using Outdated Computer Technology?
1. Increased Costs
Technology is evolving at an exponential rate, and the good news is that it provides increased performance.
However, new technology doesn’t have to be costly.* But using outdated technology is. It’s expensive to maintain and eats away at productivity – especially if it’s more than four years old.
*An IT company like Data Magic in Coppell, Texas can help you find solutions that fit your budget.
Did you know that it takes more power to run older equipment? New technology performs better and for a fraction of what you’re paying to run your old system.
Old technology runs more slowly, takes longer to execute processes, and requires time-eating calls to your IT company for repairs.
Running old computers, servers, and networks can quickly become a financial burden and hit you where it hurts most – in your bank account.
2. Decreased Productivity
“Professionals waste 22 minutes each day, on average, dealing with IT-related issues. For someone who works five eight-hour days for 50 weeks of the year, that translates into a loss of more than 91 hours per year.”
When your employees are faced with computers that freeze, software that crashes, and slow-running equipment:
- Your costs go up due to decreased productivity,
- Staff gets frustrated because they can’t do their jobs properly, and,
- Customers have to wait for service.
Decreased productivity can cost you in lost revenue as well. The work piles up, and your employees get so frustrated that they may decide to leave.
Now you’ve got unhappy employees and unhappy customers. This is no way to run a veterinary practice.
There’s no doubt that outdated software and hardware have increased rates of failure. And failed computing processes result in downtime – some veterinarians have to close their doors entirely when this happens.
Older forms of hardware don’t use today’s solid-state drives that are fast and efficient. They’re more prone to failure in this sense alone. And computer failures cost money.
In fact, an ITIC survey found that:
“98% of organizations say a single hour of downtime costs over $100,000; 81% of respondents indicated that 60 minutes of downtime costs their business over $300,000. And a record one-third or 33% of enterprises report that one hour of downtime costs their firms $1 million to over $5 million.”
If you run a small veterinary practice, these numbers are likely higher than what you would experience. But, any form of downtime is bad for business.
Not only is downtime embarrassing and costly but remember that your customers’ time is important too. They may take their pets elsewhere for care if you keep them waiting.
4. Security Breaches
If your practice accepts credit card transactions or has access to sensitive personal information, such as social security numbers, financial data, or medical records, it’s vulnerable to a data breach.
With the sophisticated and increasingly devastating impacts that security events bring, this alone should be a good reason to upgrade your technology.
Software developers are continually releasing updates to close security gaps. If you’re running old hardware and software, these patches can’t be applied.
The developers will no longer support your system. The end result is an entire network of computers that are exposed to malware and computer viruses.
The longer you use your old technology, the greater the chance that a hacker will get in and steal or corrupt your data.
A veterinary practice owner accidentally installs malware on the practice’s point-of-sale (POS) devices. This allows unauthorized access to a customer’s name and credit card number as they swipe their card during the purchasing transaction. The practice owner starts to panic when the data breach is discovered. Now what?
The expenses begin to add up quickly with a possible lawsuit looming. The practice owner is looking at $8,500 in out-of-pocket expenses, with more for legal fees.
The hit to the practice’s reputation and subsequent loss of sales can devastate its bottom line. Here are some of the remediation costs the practice owner may face:
- Notifying customers that personal data was compromised
- Providing credit monitoring services
- Hiring security experts or IT consultants
- Potential lawsuits from customers seeking monetary damages
What Should You Do? Schedule An IT Assessment
A comprehensive IT infrastructure assessment will list what you are using now in the way of hardware and software, as well as any legacy systems or third-party applications.
It will identify weaknesses, inefficiencies and security gaps in your computing environment.
And, it will pinpoint areas that could be costing you needlessly and hindering revenue gains.
If nothing else, it will bring you some peace of mind!
When Was The Last Time You Had An IT Assessment?
Veterinarians in Dallas/Fort Worth trust us for all their technology needs.