Your IT Infrastructure is more than just the computers that populate your labs and office space. It is a complex network of hardware and software located both on and off-site that is at the core of everything your biotech startup does. Without having these systems in place and running smoothly, your executives and researchers can't work effectively.
When you are evaluating additions to your IT infrastructure, there are many important considerations to keep in mind. But most of them can be divided into four broad categories. Every biotech startup needs to understand how well equipped their IT infrastructure is in the following areas.
Your business cannot go a day without IT. It needs to be there for you all day, every day, without interruption. Having to suspend laboratory experiments for even a few hours can have disastrous consequences and quickly burn through investment funding. That is why the overall reliability for your IT infrastructure is so important.
Given the interdependent nature of today's complex technologies, it is far too easy for problems to arise. You may think that your IT is ready to handle any challenge, and then one small change cripples the entire system. Reliability needs to be a priority for any biotech startup that wants to produce results as quickly as possible.
Your laboratory is probably the center of your business, but that doesn't mean that it is the only place that business happens. It is more important than ever for both executives and researchers to be able to access data, software and even hardware no matter where they are.
If your data is flexible and accessible, that means you can access anything from an off-site laboratory, from a meeting room filled with potential investors, from an airport or from your own home. The right IT infrastructure can help you maximize your productivity and the utility of your data.
As recent cases have illustrated, data security is more important than ever. The loss of research or business data to a competitor can destroy your competitive advantage. Unfortunately, data theft is not the only threat you face. Malicious attacks can shut down laboratory equipment, and random computer viruses can cause even more trouble.
Your IT infrastructure is both your biggest vulnerability and your best defense. When properly installed and managed, your IT can protect you from both internal and external threats. The consequences of a security breach are so serious that every biotech startup needs to guard against them.
Do your have the time to try and troubleshoot your own IT problems? Have you ever tried to fix something and only made the problem worse? Support is crucial for keeping your IT infrastructure online and running efficiently.
Your priority is proving your concept and securing more investment funding. Clearly you have more important things to do that installing software updates, untangling wires and tinkering with you employee's computer terminals. Make sure that you have comprehensive support available to you whenever your IT infrastructure requires it.
Outsourcing your IT to a managed services provider makes it easy for you to get the most out of the technologies you rely on. To learn more about what an effective IT infrastructure looks like in practice, read our white paper "After the Seed: Planning It Investment for a Biotech Startup"