What happens in a Strategic Review?

A strategic review is a conversation not a presentation; not death by PowerPoint!
To illustrate what I mean, I have created a fictitious company:  Benny’s Fine Wines (or BFW as it is referred to in this article) is an independent wine shop.
Benny's Fine Wines
Example of what we discuss: NB this section is filled in DURING the meeting. Remember: It’s not prepared: we discuss not present!
Business Overview - IT Support London
In the meeting, we want to know about your business challenges. Your business issues. Your worries. Your concerns. Is your business process software working well? If not – what problems does it cause? Is your website not what you want it to be? What’s wrong with it? Within your challenges and questions are the kernels of solutions. Our role is to understand the issues you face at a strategic level and then suggest tech solutions that:
  • improve your workflows
  • Save your organisation time
  • Save your organisation money
  • Minimises cyber risk
We do, of course, discuss the state of play with your tech as well. But at an overview level. We are not going to talk tech at you! 
We want to demonstrate that we are your business partner and how we add value to you.
 
Discussing your business challenges and tech allows us to identify areas that need improvement. Using a simple “traffic light” system (red = work needs to be done, green = everything is good) – it is easy to identify issues and risks. In the example below, BFW have issues with cyber security. (One main issue is that they don’t (yet) use password management and they have been caught out with a hack which was caused by weak passwords and poor password hygiene (using the same password for several sites).  
Scorecard - IT Support London
We can drill deeper into the technical weaknesses: again, this is not a deep dive into IT and systems. The goal is to identify the key issues with your IT environment.

For example:

  • slow internet connectivity and what can be done to get a faster connection.  
  • If your password management is poor (everyone uses the same password for logging into systems) we can recommend a password manager to keep all passwords secure, unique, and random.
  1. Prior to the review, we will have assessed all parts of the tech setup and subscriptions that we have oversight of.  
  2. We then apply our best practices and cybersecurity recommendations to what we identify and score all of it.  
  3. We will highlight any glaring issues that we feel must be prioritised.
  4. We discuss other areas that we feel should be worked on and then add them as a recommendation.
  5. In the following to example, BFW have poor wireless coverage in parts of their wine warehouse as well as their shops. One reason is that the tech they use is very old. You will see there is recommendation to “implement a proper Wi-Fi environment”. Also, as mentioned in the business strategy notes taken at the beginning of the review, their current VOIP telephone setup is not working at all well. This is also added to the list of recommendations.

Wireless Network | IT Support | London - IT Support London

Or

Technology Infrastructure - IT Support London

All the recommendations are then collated into the technology roadmap. “Great” you say. “How much is this all going to cost?” you say.

Well: there are two parts to that answer. The first part is that we can provide some indicative costs right away in the meeting. (We would want to get a go ahead to formally quote before any decision would be made). More importantly, we would look to a) prioritise those services or projects that are most important to you and b) look to assess when they would be done.

Budgets are an important part of any business and ITGUYS wants to help you plan for the future so you know what your tech costs are going to be so you can budget accordingly. The recommendations made are not necessarily to be all done, all at once. In fact, sometimes this a bad idea, let alone may not be financially feasible.

In the example below, I have spread some of the project work over the third quarter of 2021. You will also see a regular (but lower price) service that we recommend will help BFW with their cybersecurity risk.

Technology roadmap - IT Support London