Spruce Up Your IT This Spring
While managing your IT should be a year-round effort, we all have some tasks that get pushed to the back burner- file cleanup, reviewing inventory, resetting passwords, physically cleaning hardware, etc. With the busy first quarter out of the way and summer still some time away, Spring is a great time to take a closer look at all those piled up tasks. Here are eight tips to help you clean up and organize your organization’s IT:
Redundant and duplicate files can take up a lot of space, often resulting in us not finding what we need when we need it. It’s time to clean those files. Start by deleting duplicates and/or irrelevant junk files and moving older unused files that may be needed for future possibilities to an archive folder. For ease of access and use, organize files into more appropriate folders. For example, move a budget file into a finance folder and move local files to a cloud share if needed by others, like from OneDrive to SharePoint or from Google Drive to Google Team sites. But before you perform this task, ensure you have a good backup!
We all rely on our backups to save the day when things go terribly wrong, especially when a data breach happens or the operating system crashes. So it is pertinent to ensure that we have good backups that work properly. Run a fire drill on your backups. This will ensure you have good backups and they are getting updated on a regular basis.
Refresh Operating System:
A well-functioning operating system is key to having smooth IT operations. But most of us pay attention to our operating systems only when something stops working or the system crashes. Let’s change that. If your computer is 3 or more years old, seriously consider an operating system refresh to improve overall performance.
According to the 2017 DBIR, 81% of data breaches happen because of weak or reused passwords. Changing your passwords often and using complex & unique passwords for each application and device is crucial.
There is always some old IT equipment that is lying around in storage that has been forgotten about. Review that old gear to determine what needs to be e-wasted, updated, given away or replaced. This not only reduces e-waste and clutter but also prevents duplicate purchases and possible data loss if those devices end up in the wrong hands like on an eBay sale without proper data deletion off those drives.
Every year an organization experiences some employee turnover. This results in a change in the number of application subscriptions or systems being used. Not keeping an accurate count of these subscriptions can cost an organization money. Review all subscriptions to determine if the correct number of users are being reflected and upgrade or downgrade as required.
Review inventory asset reports for accuracy. This will ensure all your gear is accounted for and receiving proper support like security patches and anti-virus protection. This is a good time to review which devices are candidates for replacement given age and hardware specs. A typical PC has a 5-8-year life expectancy.
Remove Dust and Clean Hardware:
Physically cleaning your systems and hardware is important not only from a hygiene point of view but also to ensure everything works properly. Start with cleaning out dust from behind your computer desktops after you power off. Then, wipe down keyboards, mouse, phones, wires, computers, headsets with disinfectant cleaners. Wrap up by making sure everything is connected and working properly. This is also a good time to clean up that spaghetti mess of cables behind your desk.
How an organization tackles IT spring cleaning depends on what areas need more attention or have more backlog. We hope that these tips help your organization identify those areas and get you off to a good start. Happy “sprucing up your IT”!