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As a business owner, you face

almost constant pressure to

prioritize. The best investment, the

most necessary improvement, the

least potential risk.

Technology

exerts its own pressure.

Today’s

breakthrough could be table stakes

in just a few years’ time, so each

new innovation forces a judgment

call: Is this the next big thing for

my business, or just another fad?

Of course the decision to launch

a technology project is only the

first step. The drain on capital –

both financial and human –

can be immense, especially for

a small to mid-sized business.

Before diving in, look at options

to optimize your investment.

Leverage Vendor Relationships

You’re an expert in what you do. Your

customers rely on you to fill a need. Why

not do the same to get your project off the

ground? Consider your strengths to decide

whether you or a specialized partner would

have greater potential impact.

Working with a vendor does not abdicate

your accountability for the final result. After

all, you still own and manage the project and

goals. But by leveraging another vendor’s

expertise, you may be able to streamline

time to market and free resources to focus

more effectively on managing the project

long-term.

Consider Alternative Financing

New technology often requires new

equipment. Instead of absorbing a line of

credit or tying up cash flow with a large

purchase, consider leasing any equipment

you may need through an FNB leasing

expert. That way, you can focus on operating

expense as opposed to capital expense and

have a greater opportunity to stay nimble

– especially when the equipment you buy

today could quickly be rendered obsolete by

the next new development.

Get HelpWhere It’s Needed

Look into back-office processes where an

external resource may be able to get the job

done more efficiently. Payment processing is

a great example, as is lifecycle management

of office equipment. Experts like First

National Bank can also provide guidance

on challenging matters such as employee

benefits, insurance and even your personal

wealth management needs, so you can focus

your energy on moving your business ahead.

At some point, you will be faced with a

decision on whether or not to invest in new

technology. By remaining flexible and open

to creative ways to optimize resources,

you can make the right choice for the right

reasons without sacrificing attention on

your business or customers.

K

INVESTING IN

TECHNOLOGY

What does

success look like?

Think about the business

challenge you are trying to

solve and the goals you are

trying to reach beyond the

point of launch. Is this

investment going to get

you there?

What CAN WE afford?

Know what you will have to

spend in dollars and time

not just for launch, but for

the ongoing management,

maintenance and enhancement

of the project. Be certain you

have enough left over to balance

ongoing investments in your

business’ infrastructure.

Can WE “live it?”

Successful technology

investments require great

focus and great execution.

Make sure it’s a fit for

your culture and that your

employees and customers

are open to, and enthusiastic

about, the change.

BEFORE

YOU INVEST

Trying to decide whether to

pursue a technology project?

FNB Chief Technology Officer

Mark Shozda

offers these

three key questions to get you

started.

BUSINESS STRATEGIES TODAY

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SPRING 2015

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