Have you considered the IT security implications for your business? According to a global information security survey, only 22% of executives have thought about this. The threat is very real, but for many businesses, IT issues are beyond their expertise.
Perhaps it’s time to consider taking advantage of managed IT support services. Check out these must-know benefits and find out what you’re missing!
What is Managed IT Support?
Outsourced IT support is where a third-party service provider manages and supports your IT services. The actual package of services can vary but may involve:
- Desktop PC support
- Server support
- Printer support
- IT security
These managed IT services are only a few of the wide range of services you may outsource. What are the benefits of outsourcing IT?
1. Lower Labor Costs
Recruiting and keeping your own IT staff can be very expensive. Keeping people trained up is essential but this can make them more attractive to others. Your retention and replacement costs go up the more experienced your staff gets.
When you outsource technical support all these labor costs are part of the outsourced IT services. They are better equipped to handle recruitment, retention, and training of IT labor. Outsourcing means you don’t have these challenges.
2. Increased Efficiency
If you try to do your own IT support you have to pay for your people’s and your organization’s learning curve. Research and development of IT solutions take time and money. Implementation times can be longer and so the returns on investments in technology take longer to be achieved.
3. Keep up to Date with New Technology
Technology is changing at such a rapid rate that it’s very difficult to keep up to date. Outsourcing IT services means letting the experts deliver up to date solutions for you. Trying to do this in-house might take much longer.
In-house alternatives might involve hiring new people or at least re-training existing people. Onboarding people and managing them on a new technology implementation can take weeks. Then they may not be required long-term for ongoing support.
Failing to keep up to date with new technology can mean problems with software or hardware support from suppliers. Competitors can steal an advantage if you don’t have the best current solutions in place.
4. Control Costs
If you outsource IT you can convert your fixed costs into variable costs. The budgeting advantages alone may be enough to justify outsourcing IT. This way you only need to find the budget for the IT you need, when you need it.
5. Quality People
A quality managed IT support company will have quality people. You contract the company to deliver the service and they manage the quality of their people. Recruiting technical people is a specialized skill in itself.
Getting appropriately trained, qualified and in some cases certified people is essential. In addition, you want your IT support people to have the relevant experience. As an IT support company will have a number of clients they will be continuously dealing with similar challenges and gaining useful experience.
6. Experienced Back Up
If you have an in-house IT team it’s difficult to provide them with the right support if they have technical problems. An outsourced IT support service will provide their team with support as they need it. They can pull on a wider range of support than an in-house team could hope for.
7. Risk Management
If you carry out any kind of risk management process you will have assessed the risk to your business from various threats. A key risk for many businesses is maintaining business continuity in the event of a technology failure. Your business may have essential systems that it requires to function.
Imagine not being able to communicate with customers because of an email failure, telephone breakdown or computer virus problem. These issues are key to business survival. Outsourced IT services can manage these risk for you.
8. Competitive Advantage
If IT services are managed effectively that can be a source of competitive advantage. Faster implementations, higher quality people, and skills and state of the art solutions contribute to your competitiveness. The benefits are passed on to your customers and mean you have a competitive advantage.
If you are a smaller business you may not have the advantages of scale of a larger business. The competition may be able to have larger IT teams and higher investment levels. The dice can seem rigged in their favor.
Outsourcing your IT support can give you large business advantages. An outsourced provider will allow you access to similar technologies used by larger competitors. The economies of scale of an outsourced IT support provider are shared with you, no matter how small you are.
The security implications of IT are constantly raised in the media. Control of personal data, hacking, computer viruses and scams raise lots of concerns for businesses. You are expected to take appropriate measures to manage security.
This is an area where expertise is very valuable. Managed services can maintain the latest technologies and techniques to defend you from the security challenges. Security standards are an area not to skimp on.
10. Focus on Your Business
Whatever your core business is, you are the expert in that area. You have limits on the resources you can deploy so understandably you want to deploy them where that will get the best returns. That is on your core business.
It’s easy to get distracted from your core business by side issues or non-core activities. IT is just such a distraction. The more you and your team are distracted by non-core activities the less you are focused on what your business is really about.
What’s Right for Your Business?
Outsourcing IT is not necessarily right for all businesses. Outsourcing can also mean different things to different businesses.
There is a range of managed IT support options available. Talk to a number of providers to learn what the can do for your business.
For more ideas to help your business, click here. If you have any thoughts on managing IT resources, be sure to share them in the comments.