Most entrepreneurs know that technology can help them transform their business and do things more efficiently, but they also hit a wall of lingo, confusion and obfuscation that can make choosing the right technology more of an ordeal than an investment.

So, to help you pick the right tools, make the best choices and keep the bottom line in check, here are five technologies that every start-up needs, why they are important and how much you can expect to spend:

1. Connectivity

You need a reliable service provider for your email and internet and you need one that scans your emails for viruses or phishing attacks as part of the service. Picking the perfect connectivity partner results in less downtime and less time spent trying to troubleshoot connectivity problems. Being connected to the outside world to succeed making this the single most important box to tick on the technology list.

The budget solution: You can get connectivity from as little as R99 per month, it just depends on the bandwidth you need and the type of connection your business requires.

2. Security

Invest in a firewall router or device to protect your network from incoming attacks – these devices go hand-in-hand with business connectivity and add a necessary layer of protection onto your business and its data. The better the firewall, the lower the risk when it comes to cyber-attacks.

The budget solution: You can purchase an entry-level wireless or access point router with a basic built-in firewall for a once-off fee of around R600.

3. An anti-virus program

A reputable anti-virus program is essential for your own protection, not only in terms of protecting your valuable business information, but protecting your reputation. You get hacked and lose important client data and they discover you had no safeguards in place, well, the damage to your growth and client trust will be immeasurable. It is also worth noting that the free anti-virus solutions are not the best ones to choose for a business.

The budget solution: You can expect to pay around R350 annually for a subscription-based solution.

4. Backup

Backup is mission critical. The most valuable part of your business is its data so invest in a backup device or cloud backup solution to keep it secure and accessible on demand. Most reliable backup solutions aren’t that expensive today and should become a vital part of your IT infrastructure. If you’re hit by ransomware, more than 95% of the time your data will be unrecoverable. This kind of loss could close your business so invest in a solution that will keep you ahead of the game.

The budget solution: Invest in a USB backup drive for around R900, or in cloud storage from as little as R19 per month. Just check the privacy laws around the data centre you choose to work with.

5. Network patch management and a network monitoring tool

These solutions are ideal for companies that have five users or more. It is an optional investment, but can provide immense value to your business as you get a bird’s eye view of your network, IT assets and any security vulnerabilities.

The budget solution: These tools are usually licensed on a per device model and many range between R200-R380 per device per year.

As seen on https://bizconnect.standardbank.co.za/start/launch-your-business/5-tech-investments-your-start-up-needs-today.aspx

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