Sean Duffy
Barclays Bank PLC

Member Article

The time is right to invest in tech

Sean Duffy, managing director and head of Technology, Media and Telecoms at Barclays, looks at where businesses should invest in technology.

Over recent months, there have been a few reports suggesting that medium size businesses will be spending more money on their companies’ technology in the next few years. Investing in tech to improve operations and efficiency is a top strategic priority for businesses looking to compete with larger companies, according to a recent Oxford Economics Global Study.

Recent research from Barclays’ Technology, Media and Telecoms (TMT) team also found that 37% of businesses operating online in the UK are planning to increase their IT spend in 2013. It’s therefore worth examining the key areas where online businesses should invest.

Your Website

The introduction of superfast broadband across the UK has upped the ante for businesses operating online because consumers want a positive user experience online. It will be businesses or brands, not the network provider or device manufacturer, that will be impacted if the website isn’t up to scratch.

Mobility

As PC sales decline, the number of people using their mobile phones or tablets to browse the internet is increasing all the time. 4G will only accelerate this, bringing superfast broadband into the hands of the everyday consumer, offering data connectivity akin to a laptop or PC. Businesses need to prepare for an increase in traffic from people accessing their website on handheld devices so developing it for mobiles and tablets is essential.

Security

Security and fraud topped the list of technology concerns for businesses in our recent research into online businesses and those processing tens of thousands of credit and debit card transactions online every day can be particularly vulnerable. Ensuring systems are locked down, up to date with security patches, and fully protected against any hacking attacks is essential.

The Data Centre

Website downtime can lead to significant revenue loss and servers must be able to cope with peaks in demand, provisioning more bandwidth on the fly to support heavy numbers of visitors. Our research found that over one in ten online businesses (12%) are currently losing almost £170,000 per year in missed sales due to web outages, based on an average turnover of £8.9m. The average downtime recorded represented seven days’ worth of trading. Businesses operating online need to choose a reliable data centre partner, that can deliver a robust service and backup when needed.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Barclays Bank PLC .

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