There is an infestation that is an anathema to business networks everywhere.  This infestation isn’t a virus, hackers or malware.  It’s none other than a goat.  See, you have a goat infestation, and it’s chewing you out of your profits and sanity.

Many of the attributes of bad IT can humorously, and sadly quite literally, be attributed to mirror attributes in goats.  This sounds quite ludicrous, but it’s a very effective way to put a finger on a problem plaguing so many businesses.

Simply said, the goat is anything that prevents your technology from improving and supporting your business in the most efficient, productive and profitable way possible.  Allow me to lay out the symptoms and you can decide for yourself.

 Goats are lazy.  They inherently don’t really want to do anything, well productive anyway.  You beg and plead to have various issues fixed, but they never seem to have time for you.  As an example; we have a client that needed help formatting a Microsoft Word document.  Rather than take the time to help them the goat emailed them a copy of the Word manual.  Oh, and if five o’clock rolls around, they are nowhere to be seen, even if your network is in shambles.  We’ve seen that sad scenario as well.

 Goats are stubborn.  It’s either their way or no way.  They fight and pull against you no matter how hard you pull.  Actually, they pull back harder than you.  You have specific goals for your IT.  They just don’t seem to line up with what the goat wants to do.  Guess who wins that tug of war.

 Goats are angry.  They don’t want to show up at work on time, they complain endlessly about various non-IT related activities such as documentation and budgeting they are expected to provide.

 Goats get annoyed easily. You bring them a problem.  It just happens not to be the problem they care about at that moment.  It’s a problem causing you to lose money every hour, but it’s hard to track down or tedious to fix.   Instead they are intent to work on a random issue that causes your network to drop every third Tuesday.  They mumble streams of acronyms trying to impress and confuse you enough that you will drop your petty issues for now.  Guess which problem is more pressing to your goat.

 Goats are destructive.  This one isn’t a conscious decision, but nonetheless it’s a key attribute.  When goats are always reactive such as only fixing fires, never getting ahead, they allow problems to accumulate and grow.  Eventually their negligence causes a cascade of failures that bring your network to a halt for several days.  This is when your lack of a comprehensive backup strategy rears its ugly horned head.  So, you lose days of data and receivables.  Your goat just shrugs off your anger and pain.

We’ve helped people who had been ravaged by goat destruction.  Their “backup strategy” consisted of a on-site backup that backed up to the drive it was supposed to be backing up!  How could that fail?

 Goats are gluttonous.  They seem to always have some exotic way to spend your money.  They NEED the latest and greatest toys to feed their raging boredom.  They also hire other goats to help them support you.  They are just so busy doing whatever it is they do.  Before you know it you have an entire flock of goats in your employ.

So how does a business owner start thinning out the goat herd?

It begins by outsourcing this vital business function to a Managed Services Provider as a complement or even replacement to the in-house IT flock. Outsourcing a company’s technology needs puts that function into the hands of an entire experienced and well-trained team, while significantly reducing IT costs.

How does it work?

One business we now work with originally created a new staff position for an IT manager. Unfortunately the person hired actually had little IT decision making experience.  The business owner soon learned the individual was incapable of managing the firm’s technology needs.

The business engaged ThrottleNet as a Managed Service Provider. ThrottleNet took over management of the network and supplied them with a personal contact called a Virtual CIO to help maintain the network and assist with long term IT planning. The client saw an immediate turnaround and cost reduction, and was able to eliminate the new hire and the staff position within four months.

Your IT department may not have all these attributes of a goat, but chances are they have some.  You need an IT solution that cares about your goals and dreams.  You aren’t in business to be a charity; you are in business to make money.  If your IT solution isn’t furthering these goals of profit and success, you not only have a goat on your hands but also an unnecessary payroll.