It is imperative to have a strategy in place before you implement any upgrades to your business applications, especially those applications you consider “mission critical”. This strategy in your project management may involve a process to review the latest software before proceeding, or understanding the impact of the change to your network and business process. Are there new features that require staff training? Are there pricing changes to impact your capital costs? Will an upgrade impact any network settings? Your technology success partner should be able to walk you through this plan and it’s impact.

Step 1: Determining What Needs an Upgrade, and Why

Naturally, the first step to any upgrade process is identifying that an upgrade is not only available, but necessary. When a component of your business network requires an upgrade, it will generally be for at least one of three reasons:

  • You want your solutions to have an increased capacity or range.
  • You want to improve the security of your business and its resources.
  • You want an increase in your business’ productivity, with less maintenance required.

If a part of your infrastructure could facilitate any (or all) of these objectives if it was upgraded, it’s probably a good idea to do so. Even though an upgrade will seem like a “no-brainer”, it is still highly recommended you speak with your technology team to ensure the upgrade is coming at the right time with the right changes. Sometimes, these upgrades are mandatory, making it all the more essential to have your technology partner implement them correctly.

Step 2: Planning and Preparing for Your Upgrade

A technology upgrade isn’t something that can be done on a whim, or without proper planning for execution. If you want your upgrade to be successful, you want to make sure that your network can support this upgrade in its current state, and any other considerations that could come up that could impact the integrity of your systems. For instance, if an upgrade is projected to create a lengthy interruption, it may be wiser to have it implemented after hours, when your resources are less likely to be called for.

Step 3: Protecting Yourself with Backup

While your upgrade will ideally run smoothly and not cause any issues, it is better to be prepared for a “less than ideal” situation. This is why an upgrade absolutely should be preceded by a comprehensive backup. With a backup taken, any issues that your upgrade may incur can be easily mitigated – so while you won’t have gained anything, your losses will be minimized.

ActiveCo Technology Management can help you manage your technology, ensuring that your upgrade processes are done correctly. Reach out to us at 604.931.3633 to learn more!

Related Article:

Project Management Series Part 1