Outsourced IT Support: A Smart Business Decision?
Your business’s IT needs are unique and often complex. You may have heard about or considered the option of outsourcing your IT to a third-party company. Entrusting another company with managing a crucial part of your operations can be a difficult decision. Getting reliable, outsourced IT support shouldn’t keep you up at night and making the decision to switch shouldn’t be that hard.
There are many reasons you may want to switch to managed IT services. Your IT staff may be getting overwhelmed. On the other hand, maybe there’s not enough work to keep them busy. Perhaps you’re a growing company that is encountering more sophisticated and more frequent technology issues.
Any one of the above situations may cause you to consider hiring another employee or outsourcing to a team. We’ve put together some of the pros and cons of outsourcing IT that will help make the decision easier.
The Benefits of Outsourced IT Support
There are opportunities and obstacles with any set of choices. Some companies may find that outsourcing their IT is the best decision for them, while others may experience more benefits by hiring in-house.
However, we’ve found that many companies don’t recognize the distinct benefits outsourced IT support can offer. So, without further ado, here are some of the advantages of outsourced IT to help you determine if it’s right for your business.
When you outsource, you almost always save money compared to hiring, training, and retaining a full-time employee or team. By hiring a third-party to manage your IT needs, you reduce costs and operating expenses.
You may have someone on your staff who is “good with computers.” But when it comes to more complex issues, they are often in over their heads. By hiring a team of professional IT experts, you are guaranteed the most in-depth and current knowledge of IT practices. Members of any good outsourced IT support team are trained and certified professionals.
By having a third-party team manage your IT, you can control when and where expenses happen. If budgets are tight or you’re in an off-season, you can adjust the amount of service or proactive projects your IT professional is working on. Your managed IT services provider should work for you, not the other way around.
You offer a specific set of services or products at your business, which probably does not include managing computers, networks, or other IT services. Your business will be best served when you’re working on what you do best — not technical issues outside the scope of your role.
Whether that’s operating a local restaurant, constructing new houses, or running a Fortune 500 tech company, you shouldn’t have to worry about whether your technology is working correctly. When you outsource your IT needs, you can get back to running your business and stop worrying about the tech infrastructure.
Even if you have a full-time IT person on staff, it’s unlikely they have the time or resources to stay current on every new threat or trend in the IT world. IT services can be complicated and are always changing.
Outsourced IT professionals can help ensure that your business has the best protection and the best technology. This is because an IT provider only deals in technology — a crucial part of their job is to stay up-to-date on new technology standards and trends. Also, with a pool of technicians, there is a larger pool of knowledge than just one person can provide. Professional IT companies have the best access to resources and expertise that will reduce the risk of any IT problem.
Common Risks of Outsourcing IT Needs
Those are just a few of the many benefits of outsourcing your IT. However, we won’t lie to you and say outsourced IT support doesn’t have its risks. Here is a list of potential downsides associated with outsourcing.
We often hear about IT companies that take over the IT services needs for a company and then are hardly heard from again. It’s easy for an IT company to hide behind the phone and provide remote, impersonal service. Having an IT technician work in person with your staff is invaluable. It can help reduce resolution time and prevent problems before they even happen.
Loss of Control
In contrast to being able to regulate when and how much service you receive from your IT services provider, you may find that the outsourced company does not communicate well. If you’re unaware of what’s being done, you may lose control of your IT infrastructure. However, a trustworthy provider will keep you in the loop of what updates and changes are being made. They will ensure that you are the final stop on decisions, user access, and passwords.
Finally, not all outsourced IT companies keep their staff on call. If an emergency or problem does happen, you need to consider how much downtime you will have. If your IT company is slow to respond and not available during holidays or off-hours, you may want to think twice about hiring them.
Overcoming Outsourced IT Support Risks
Hiring another company always comes with some uncertainty. But the good news is that many of these risks can be combated with proper research and due diligence. By taking the time to find out more about particular providers, you can help ensure you choose a reputable organization that you can trust.
In the end, outsourced IT support might be the right decision for you, or you may want to go another route. It’s worth exploring outsourced IT to see if it’s a fit, but it’s not for everyone.
If you want to explore outsourced IT, sign up for one of our free assessments. We’ll come out to your place of business and take a look at your infrastructure and systems. Then we can let you know what outsourcing might look like for your organization specifically.