IT Assessments and Audits: What are They Good For?
We all rely on technology to run our businesses successfully. We use it to store important data, communicate with each other, and drive sales or donations. Technology failure can cause major damage to the work we do every day. So, how can we make sure our technology is working well and continue to function properly? We can start by performing regular IT audits and assessments.
What is an IT audit or assessment
An assessment involves reviewing and auditing the internal network infrastructure, a review of current policies and procedures, and interviewing staff at all levels to attain an intrinsic understanding of your organization’s IT. A set of recommendations is presented based on the findings. These recommendations are meant to both broaden your organization’s understanding of how IT functions internally as well as provide a roadmap that will facilitate more efficiency, productivity, and scalability.
This process takes into consideration your organization’s goals, staff use of technology, budgetary limitations, and industry standards to best recommend next steps for your technology’s future. Your leadership and IT teams will need to work together to review the findings of your audit and make plans for improvement and updates that will help your organization better utilize technology for growth.
Preparing for an IT audit
Before you begin an audit, make sure you know what the scope is, what you think your risks are, and what your budget is for making upgrades to your IT. This will help you with completing the audit and executing any changes based on the proposals and recommendations of your consultant.
What to expect
An audit or assessment involves reviewing IT infrastructure, policies, and operations of an organization. An IT consultant will review your systems, talk with staff members, and take note of any potential risks. This review is followed by recommendations for improvement that can help protect your organization from external and internal threats and increase productivity. Your leadership and IT teams will need to work together to review the outcomes of your audit and make plans for improvement and updates.
How often should you perform an audit?
If you are unsure when your last audit or assessment took place, are concerned about your IT security, or have not updated your IT recently, it is a good idea to contact your IT department or Managed Services Provider about performing an assessment soon. There are no absolute rules for how often audits should take place, but we recommend annual reviews to make sure your technology and security are working properly and are effective for your needs.