Outsourced IT: Trusted Advice and Guidance for Your Business
An old adage says, “if you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room.” When it comes to your business’ IT needs, make sure you are not in the wrong room. While you might trust your own technological acumen, it never hurts to have a little help from the IT experts.
Understandably, outsourcing your IT can bring up concerns. After all, your network, applications and devices act as a vehicle for your productivity. You may fear the risk of handing over your responsibility to someone else. However, you can rest assured knowing that offloading your business’ technical operations to a competent IT service provider will reduce risk and improve overall operations. Working with an IT service provider not only opens up your business to new possibilities, but it also helps keep your work safe – most likely safer than going at it alone.
The Dangers of DIY
In the early days of business computing, when a computer issue popped up, the problem was difficult to solve. You had to understand the specifics of the technology, and it always involved some risky trial-and-error. Thanks to online tutorials, tech forums and YouTube, you can work through your problems step by step. Although it may seem simple to do it yourself, you still run a high risk of making matters much worse in a business computing environment. If you follow directions blindly without fully understanding them, you could cause turmoil for your business technology. In turn, this could cause partial or total downtime for your employees.
In addition, any advice you follow from untrusted sources on the internet may serve only as a “band-aid” to the problem. A short term fix does not mean all problems have been cured. You may have to go back in the future to try to fix your problem again. You want things done correctly, efficiently and safely. That alone shows your need for a professional. Trying to do an expert’s job on your own could create even more problems for your company. Would you let someone without experience in your industry to do your work with little guidance? Probably not.
You could also offload your IT work onto someone in your company who has a good grasp of technical things. Or, you could hire a full-time IT staff member. However, hiring someone internally to work as an IT department for your business can bring additional headaches. That new hire might require training to stay up-to-date with technology and threats. Everything costs time, productivity, and money. You even have to cover the benefits you offer all employees, including tuition reimbursement. Outsourcing your IT management avoids these headaches. An outsourced team instead handles all of the extraneous obligations of having an internal IT employee or department.
A Professional Knowledge Base
When you outsource your technology needs to a qualified IT support provider, you can feel confident in the trained professionals. In most cases, an IT support company hires only those who have studied information technology and have professional experience solving the issues that your business faces. Some even require specific certification. Your HR department might not know to look for these requirements when hiring a new employee.
The collected wisdom of an outsourced IT service team has benefits that you can’t get by leaving your company’s tasks to an in-house employee. Whatever challenges your business faces, an IT consultant has probably seen it
and solved it before. This in turn leads to issues being resolved faster than if done by a non-professional or part-time employee. Because these teams have worked in a variety of situations and industries, they understand many different kinds of technology solutions. They can maximize the efficiency of the systems your business uses and save both time and money.
Apply Knowledge to Strategy
When handing your IT alone or offloading it to another employee, you often find yourself implementing a reactive strategy with your business. IT is a full-time job, like almost any other skilled professional endeavor. Would you trust a part-time lawyer to argue your case or a part-time surgeon to operate on you? Handing off your IT needs to a team of professionals promotes a proactive strategy. They won’t just repair your IT when something goes wrong. Rather, they’ll improve it and help you avoid issues in the future. It serves as preventative medicine for your business that will help avoid costly “surgery” going forward.
An IT solution provider can tailor a strategy to improve your business’ overall IT, from finding ways to improve IT spending to making sure your data is backed up and secure from threats. In addition to keeping your digital work secure, a professional team provides your business with the tools to make your operations much more efficient. For instance, they migrate some or all of your applications to cloud services, allowing you to remain productive from any location or in the event of an outage or disaster. Or, they can deploy solutions that more easily manage data passing between your various departments or database systems.
Stay Ahead of the Curve
Business leaders aren’t only tasked with keeping their company’s operations running smoothly for day-to-day operations. A truly successful business requires foresight and the ability to anticipate the challenges that lie ahead. Accordingly, outsourcing your IT to a service provider isn’t just another business expense; it’s an investment in your company’s future.
An outsourced IT team works to upkeep your network and aids you in developing a strategy for your digital operations. However, it’s worth remembering that the company you hire is always working behind the scenes to improve the services they provide to you as well. For example, leading IT service providers make it a priority to stay current on new technology trends. Few businesses have the time, resources, or experience to do so. Your service provider will be able to point out new technologies relevant to your specific industry, making things run more efficiently, and giving you an advantage over your competition.
A professional IT team can also point out when your technology becomes out of date. Out of date technology slows your business down, or worse. It can leave you vulnerable to possible attacks and data breaches. Unfortunately, many small and medium-sized businesses only become aware of new cybersecurity threats when it’s too late. An outsourced IT provider keeps his eyes open for any developing threats, so you can count on your business’ data being protected with the newest and safest security measures.
The non-professional may not notice some potential risks. Installing new hardware or software can expose your business to data breach if not done properly. For example, introducing mobile devices to your team without an MDM (mobile device management) platform in place opens up many avenues for potential internal and external breaches or data loss. Even setting up a new PC improperly can leave your data exposed to the wrong people both inside and outside your organization. The list of risks goes on and on. An IT services team ensures the proper installation and maintenance of any new technology your business implements.
When you outsource your IT to a competent IT consultant or IT service provider, you get more than just the support of a team of experts and the collected wisdom they share. You also gain protection for the future. While you focus on sustaining and growing your business, you can let the professionals keep your IT systems running smoothly and without risk.