Just like when rushing home before a storm, mergers and acquisitions (M&A) can be stressful times for everybody. There are so many factors we need to consider, from the technology solutions we’ll be taking with us to what business processes may have to be integrated.
On the other hand, during M&A transactions, our organisations are on the cusp of adopting a brand-new culture, procedures, and maybe even new real estate (you never know!). It’s exciting, but if we don’t plan early and be methodical throughout the M&A process, our futures may be filled with more inefficiencies and problems than a soap opera.
But before anyone brings out the tissues and cues the dramatic music, there is something– scratch that, a few things, that all small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) can do to make M&As as pain-free as possible. Specifically, there are 5 information technology (IT) must-dos that SMBs can follow to achieve new levels of scalability and flexibility during an M&A.
1. Examine IT infrastructures before shifting them
M&A deals are a little bit like swimming pools. We don’t just jump in the water without knowing what to expect, and when morphing our companies, it’s much the same. Researchers discovered that “60 per cent of M&A deals” resulted in failure in the last 5 decades.
So, we need to be prepared. It’s crucial that we know what technologies we have while we’re planning our M&As – regardless if we’re the buyer or the seller. If we understand what IT solutions are in our companies, we’ll be able to catalogue our software, tools, and data to make smarter decisions regarding what needs to stay and what can go.
2. Cyber security tools and awareness training
M&As have an uncanny ability to unveil technical vulnerabilities that we may never have noticed before. It’s kind of like shining a torchlight into a sewer and seeing a crocodile staring back at us. That is to say, during an M&A, cyber threats tend to target our company systems because they’re more exposed. According to a study, 53% of respondents said their business experienced a cyber security threat during an M&A.
Throughout the entirety of an M&A, organisations need to deploy the latest cyber security measures to help protect their networks. We can use tools that promote:
Across the business world, it is highly recommended that people partake in awareness training. To keep this short and sweet, remember this mantra: awareness training keeps us educated on cyber threats and their long-term consequences. Training will keep us vigilant during M&As and make it less likely that we fall prey to cyber risks.
3. Backup data to reputable storage units
For businesses about to embark on an M&A, backing up data from across the organisation is an absolute must. Our data represents our customers and workplace processes. If we lost that information, the consequences could be severe (think reputational damage, possible lawsuits, and anything else that companies shouldn’t have to deal with).
But let’s move on from the negativity and focus on the positives. There’s a solution we can use to safeguard data during an M&A. We’re talking about the cloud – the coolest piece of tech around. By taking advantage of the cloud’s offsite storage capabilities, organisations can merge and acquire to their heart’s content, knowing that a copy of their important information is tucked away at another location.
It’s risk mitigation made easier (and security in the cloud isn’t shabby either!).
4. Maintain a culture that values technology
When it comes to mergers and acquisitions, maintaining a culture that values technology is key to ensuring that operations remain functional and relevant. After all, without our technology solutions, a wide range of vital processes like data analysis, customer service, and communication can become significantly more difficult.
That’s why it’s so important to ensure that the culture we create within our workplaces understands and appreciates the value of IT. During M&As, employees who are more tech-savvy than the Jetsons are more receptive to new tools and are more open to collaboration with new people and systems. They’re also more willing to follow any authorised procedures and make the entire process smoother than a Sunday morning stroll.
5. Managed IT services
Managed IT services are as important for mergers and acquisitions as sunlight is for plants. Managed services are the best of the best among IT support services! Provided by managed service providers (MSPs), managed services can help businesses through the entire M&A process, from the tech analysis stage to the integration of the companies.
MSPs make sure data and systems are properly managed and upgraded, documenting any changes that occur. With managed IT services, businesses can have peace of mind knowing that a support team of technology and business professionals is on hand to help them through any challenges.
An MSP can offer flexible solutions, including:
IT support services for M&As across Australia
While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to M&As, the best way to handle these types of transactions is to invest in technology solutions that will streamline the entire process. If we can deploy the right tools in accordance with a comprehensive strategy, our M&As will have higher probabilities of success.
Atarix’s M&A IT specialists can help any organisation undertake an M&A that will reward them with increased growth and efficiency. From licencing to consulting, no task is too big or small for us. Our experts are always ready to help businesses succeed, and they’re just a click away!