Startups are notoriously for having extensive initial capital requirements. Renting an office, getting your first employees on the payroll and transporting valuable resources to your area of operations can be a tricky endeavor in itself. However, one of the more insidious forms of startup cost come through your business tech.
Unless everyone is happy to provide their own laptops, in modern times it’s essential you provide them with some access to a digital workspace. This doesn’t even include all the overheads like your internet bill, electricity and just plain IT maintenance etc.
However, this doesn’t mean you need all the bells and whistles straight off. You don’t need to break the bank as soon as you start. With a little forethought and planning, you can actually greatly reduce the cost your soon-to-be great company will initially have to suffer.
Install a Linux format on old laptops.
If you’re struggling to provide a decent digital workspace for your employees, you needn’t despair. Sometimes you can buy laptops that are a few years old for an absolute pittance online. Especially ThinkPads, which are famous in small business for being easy to repair and found online for tiny sums of money compared to modern laptops or desktops.
In order to really speed it up and have it contend with a modern machine, install a light operating system on it such as Linux. If your company uses Google products for most of its operations, consider installing a free service like CloudReady, which offers a linux-based replication of a Chrome OS, essentially turning your old laptop into a Chromebook. This is a great way to ensure reliability and speed in even the oldest machines.
Use a storage facility.
Sometimes, you need to shop around for the best moving companies that also offer cheap storage. Using a service like MyBelkins (https://mybelkins.com) can help you offset the cost of potential tech items, or help you store unwanted items before you sell them.
Consider making cloud storage standard.
Before you’re operating at a level that requires entire building floors dedicated to your server farms, cloud storage offered by Microsoft, Google or Dropbox can be an inexpensive way of hosting the important files on your business needs to operate. It’s always good to save these in a multitude of secure places, but cloud storage is the first place it needs to be. You can also go to the trouble of adding different permissions for your employees, creating an easy way to give correct file access to those you work with.
Not only is this cost effective to begin with, but in a gigabyte per dollar ratio, purchasing the premium packaging options can expand your storage to really make your investment worth it.
Consider calling in favors for IT maintenance, or do it yourself.
Google is a valuable resource. 95% of problems you encounter with your IT systems will have been encountered by someone before you, and if you’re lucky there’ll be a long forum discussion somewhere that helps you resolve your problem. Alternatively, consider using a friend. Many people are IT literate these days and won’t necessarily charge you if you can promise a favor later on.
Keep these strategies in mind and you’ll be among the smartest running a startup in its infancy!