Managed IT Support
What would you do without IT?
Maintaining business as usual in a connected world is dependent upon our ability to communicate effectively with colleagues, customers and suppliers. Without resilient, available access to computing and communications technologies, businesses are unable to maintain any degree of competitive advantage.
Balancing the provision and support of IT against core business operations can be a challenge. Where budgets and head counts are limited, maintaining a permanent IT resource does not make financial sense. This is why an increasing number of small and medium sized businesses are outsourcing their IT support.
Why Outsource IT?
It is tempting for businesses to “do IT yourself”, as there is a perception that outsourcing IT support and expertise can be expensive. However, business has become almost entirely dependent upon the IT and communications systems that support everyday operations. As a result, IT support should be viewed in terms of offering business value and continuity, rather than an operating cost.
Hardware, software and emergency IT support provide essential business continuity to organisations of all sizes. In the competitive, global workplace we find ourselves in, any interruption to business as usual can prove disastrous.
Of course, disasters tend to be the exception, rather than the norm. Outsourcing your IT support has a vital role to play in some of the more mundane aspects of work too:
The smaller your business, the less likely you are to maintain a skilled in-house IT resource. The IT guy is likely to have another job in the company – more often than not, this will be their “proper” job.
Even if you have an IT department, they are likely to be busy keeping the lights on, or fixing the odd broken printer or mobile device. They are less likely to have the luxury of time to explore the latest and greatest innovations in technology and how they might improve your business performance.
As your business grows, IT is challenged to scale effortlessly to meet growing demand for data and applications. Mobile workers with user-owned devices add complexity to your IT and mergers or acquisitions require systems integration work. It is at times like these that access to a more experienced IT resource can prove even more valuable.
Outsourced IT support can significantly ease the burden on your own staff. If you pick the right supplier to outsource support to, your business will enjoy hassle-free IT support services, expert help when you need it and useful advice to ensure you get the best from your IT systems.
Dispelling the Myths
If you are thinking about outsourcing your IT support but have heard some horror stories, here are a few popular myths, dispelled.
- Outsourcing your IT support is not expensive. Most suppliers will offer a range of support contracts to suit your individual requirements – often starting from less than you think.
- Changing support contracts is not difficult. If you are already outsourcing your support and thinking about changing suppliers, you won’t find yourself locked-in to a contract that is painful to escape from.
- Support will not be provided by offshore service centres. A local presence is essential if you are to enjoy the right quality of service – both in terms of communication, accountability and response time.
- Your data will be safe. The systems and polices in place at your service provider will typically offer a greater degree of security than your own, with strict procedures in place for user authentication, systems access and back-up & recovery.