Certain types of bad business software might do more harm than good in your business. It’s important that you track down these programs and remove/replace them with software that performs key functions in your organization without the damage caused by bad business software. Just which applications are worth getting rid of? This post lists 5 types of software to remove from your system before they cause more damage.
5 types of bad business software
Your business needs certain types of business software to operate efficiently in an increasingly digital world. Here is just a sample of the types of software you need every day:
- Office productivity software such as word processing, payroll and HR management, payment tracking, and time tracking software
- Project management software
- Marketing and sales software
- Website and e-commerce management software
- CRM software
- Database and asset management software
Pretty much every business, regardless of industry, needs software tools that perform these functions to stay competitive in their environment. Some businesses purchase this software, while others choose a subscription model for tools such as Salesforce for CRM and Adobe Creative Cloud for marketing and PR.
Depending on Industry, you may need additional software to manage your business. For example, you might need to add software for:
- Monitoring software to manage remote assets or assets in an environment that isn’t hospitable to humans, such as in nuclear facilities.
- GPS tracking, especially if you use trucks to deliver products.
- Inventory handling with automated equipment, such as robots to pick, sort, and pack orders.
- AI software to aid in decision-making or manage your customer service function.
- EDI (electronic data interchange), which allows for seamless integration across the supply chain to support JIT (just in time) manufacturing that limits costs and aids in speeding payments without producing errors common in non-automated systems.
Obviously, this is not intended as a comprehensive list of business software tools you need to operate effectively.
When you have bad business software, the best case is that you don’t operate efficiently, which reduces your competitiveness. Worst case, your software provides vulnerabilities that allow bad actors to access your proprietary data or interfere with your business operations.
‘Malware’ is malicious software that poses as real software. When looking for cheap or free business software, some business owners end up inadvertently downloading malware onto their computers. Visiting untrusted websites or clicking on links in dodgy emails could also open up your system to malware.
This is the first type of bad business software you should get rid of, as it represents a security threat to your business and everyone who works for/with your business.
But it’s hard to detect this malware once it gains access to your system as it might send tendrils throughout your system, like a cancer that metastasizes throughout the body. There are a few telltale signs that malware is on your system including unusual pop-ups, unusual browser extensions, lagging and slow loading times, as well as unexplained power spikes. A cybersecurity expert can safely detect and remove this malware. To prevent future cases of malware, it is worth outsourcing constant cybersecurity support such as these cybersecurity managed services from Haycor Computer Solutions or another reputable cybersecurity firm to periodically test for vulnerabilities.
2. Unsupported software
Unsupported software is any application that no longer has support from the vendor. Often, when a developer stops supporting their software, it’s because they aren’t seeing sufficient interest to warrant continued support. That’s a clear sign that you have bad business software installed on your system. It also means that, when the software stops receiving updates, it leaves the software open to unfixable bugs and modern cyber threats.
Most software vendors will warn you when a program is about to lose support. If you’ve been using a program for many years, it could be worth checking that it still has support. After about 10 years, many programs no longer receive support. It’s recommended that you upgrade to a newer software version before this happens so that your software isn’t left vulnerable. If there is no newer version, you may have no choice but to migrate to new software.
3. Unused software
Are you paying for software that you never use? Many companies are guilty of installing programs that rarely, if ever, get used within the business, resulting in wasted money. Such software can also take up unnecessary space on your servers that slow down your operation. Periodically, you should check to ensure you’re currently using all the software installed on your system.
Some software might only demonstrate value in emergency situations, but you should consider whether there is a larger all-in-one software that can cover these emergency operations while also providing everyday functions. For example, why pay for ransomware recovery software, when you can pay for general security software that also provides this function? We’ll discuss this more later in this post. Consider carefully how regularly you use each of your applications and whether there are some programs that you could do without or integrate into other software.
For the software you use frequently, ensure you have the most recent version of this software. Software developers constantly update their software and one of the major modifications they make is closing security holes to keep up with the skills of bad actors. If you don’t update your system as soon as a new version gets released, you’re now vulnerable to these crooks.
4. Outgrown software
As your business grows, you may find that certain software becomes too limited for your needs. Your team or number of transactions may grow beyond the capacity of the current software tools to support your functions. As you grow, you also likely have more resources to devote to software so you can afford to invest in software that better meets your needs. With more resources, you may find valuable functions missing from your software. Transitioning to a more expensive tool that boasts additional features (such as useful accounting software features that may only apply to larger businesses) may benefit your productivity.
Once software starts to become too restrictive, consider upgrading to a better program. Some applications are scalable – for instance, some software companies offer different packages that allow you to transition to a more full-featured alternative without losing the effort put into setting up the software initially. In other cases where there is only one package aimed at smaller businesses, you may have no choice but to migrate to a new program. Setting up new software tools is frustrating and time-consuming. Consider using a migration service that can help you transfer all your data from one program to another.
5. Overly complicated software
Just as certain software might prove too basic for your needs, there are also software tools that are too complicated for your needs. You could find that you’re paying extra for lots of unnecessary functions that you don’t use in the near term. In other cases, you may find that the software you purchased just isn’t very user-friendly – it could take ages to master it and you could find it a nightmare to train employees how to use it.
Since it takes a good bit of time and effort to set up new software and train employees to use the software, it’s important to conduct a trial before making the switch. This ensures the software is user-friendly, performs all the functions you need, and works seamlessly with existing tools. Most companies offer such trial options, although some, like Adobe Creative Cloud, are so short you need to plan the trial carefully to ensure the tool satisfied your needs.
Getting rid of your software for a simpler version could be a good shout. You could save money and you could save time by adopting something simpler. Just make sure that you don’t downgrade your software as you’re rapidly growing – the program could be too complicated now, but could be just right in a year’s time. When looking for simpler software, make sure to take advantage of free trials and software demos that could give you a good idea of how user-friendly the tech is.
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