Friday, December 2, 2016

IT Considerations for Start-Ups

IT Startup Considerations

As a business leader you will manage various contexts and environments, with multiple concurrent challenges to address. Challenges are opportunities to learn but what challenges do you take on yourself and when to partner with a managed service provider.

Building Structure
- In a startup context, building structure is by far the most outstanding challenge:
How will you handle the following challenges: There are no core offices/ functions such as finance, HR or supply chain. Also, there may be no policies, procedures, or guidelines. In addition, you are facing uncertain demand and ad hoc requests.

IT Open Projects
- In a startup you will lead many concurrent, yet urgent open projects:
You might be asked to lead projects irrelevant to core IT services in addition to those important IT service work. From backend infrastructure projects, logical and physical access control to front end marketing, customer facing applications and services etc.

Presentation Skills
- In a startup, it is really challenging if you don’t have a good grasp of critical soft skills such as assertiveness and presentation skills:
Being able to communicate with various stakeholders, defend your argument and present your ideas in a clear understandable format is very critical and challenging if you don’t have the required communication skills.

team building
- In a startup, team building and managing team dynamics add to your challenges, especially on a tight schedule where resources are not immediately available.
You need to handle issues such as hiring suitable staff, manage prospects’ expectations, prepare training and development plans and set the proper conflict resolution mechanisms.

- Finance and budget constraints, exchange rate changes, taxes:
Financing a startup is definitely a challenge for the sponsor / developer who is desperately looking for the return on investment. After spending money to build up the business to a certain extent, the sponsor / developer can be reluctant to put in more money. This challenge limits and slows down further developments in the project. Add to this the changes in financial market illustrated in new taxes imposed or exchange rate changes.

- Regulation, and official documents:
For startups, getting certificates from authorities might be challenging, especially if the inauguration is linked to a season or a business opportunity. A delay in the official documents or certificates means lost opportunities and unavoidable financial losses which in turn limits and slow down further developments in the project.

Shareholder Expectations
- Managing stakeholder’s expectations:
In a startup stakeholders are many and diverse. For example: Suppliers are key stakeholders with high expectations when it comes to expected business opportunities with startups. Internal team members are critical stakeholders with high expectations and aspiration for the new business. In addition, there’s the traditional management perception of IT as a cost center and not as a key ingredient in the service portfolio of the business and a contributor in revenue generation.

- Competition:
For startups, market penetration is a real challenge. Sustainability is another concern that needs proper planning. Having a sound differentiation strategy and a product mix is inevitable within a fierce competitive market. Focusing on what you do best is critical to the overall success of your new venture.


- We are here to help:
Each enterprise is unique, with distinct IT needs and capabilities. At Viyu, we specialize in managed services for small to mid-sized organizations. Viyu understands that no two enterprises are exactly alike, and that there is no “one size fits all” IT solution or formula to follow. An objective, honest assessment of the clients IT needs taken in context with the organization’s core mission that lays the foundation for future successes.

Contact us today at Viyu to learn more about collaboration and what we can do for your company’s IT support, and management.