Outsourcing any aspect of your business can be a daunting prospect. Done badly, it can leave companies fragmented and their data at risk. However, with the vast quantities of information now being stored digitally and the increasing number of applications and software packages being used every day by organisations, managing everything internally can be a real challenge.
As a result, many companies are now choosing to outsource their IT to help alleviate the burden placed on in-house resources. When outsourcing is carried out effectively, it can bring huge benefits to companies, particularly smaller firms that may be less well-equipped to deal with unforeseen issues. With that in mind, we’ve listed five of the best reasons for companies to use third-party IT management.
It’s not just smaller firms that stand to benefit from outsourcing their IT, all companies ultimately succeed or fail based on their profit margins, so cost-effective resource management is key.
Dealing with all your IT infrastructure internally can be extremely costly. IT leaders are understandably on a significant salary but are too often tasked with resolving minor technical issues, rather than spending time thinking about how to take the company infrastructure forward.
It’s not just on the recruitment front where businesses could be saving money, however. Third-party suppliers that have dedicated servers focused on a particular service, like email for example, can be managed much more efficiently that an in-house server tackling all the company’s needs.
Free internal resources
By allowing an external organisation to manage your IT infrastructure, you can also free your staff and any remaining internal resources to work more effectively.
Smaller companies in particular can’t afford to spend time and money worrying about technical issues, as every minute wasted on IT management is a minute that could have been used to grow the business.
Depending on the type of business you run, dealing with IT problems can require dedicated support staff, which can become costly. With today’s mobile workforce, companies must increasingly be able to deal with issues 24 hours a day. It is hugely inefficient for individual businesses to provide this level of service, but dedicated third-party teams are able to do so at a lower cost, by providing infrastructure to multiple companies.
Internal IT departments usually operate on an “if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it” methodology due to budget constraints, but this short-sighted approach can cause huge, unforeseen problems down the line.
Unplanned down time can be hugely damaging to a company’s reputation as well as its bank balance, but constantly managing , evaluating and identifying potential future issues can be beyond some firms.
Third-party service or infrastructure providers are focused entirely on making sure that their product is delivered effectively, meaning that they will handle improvements, updates and maintenance themselves. Many vendors will also provide a level of service guarantee, stipulating how much downtime is to be expected for maintenance. As well as providing peace of mind for companies and their customers, businesses may also be entitled to compensation if a vendor breaches its guarantee.
If companies cannot afford to employ IT experts internally, that doesn’t mean they need to blindly fumble though the tech landscape. Instead, outsourced IT will give them access to expertise as and when they need it, often providing a much more cost-effective solution.
Even if a business has the financial resources to employ a team of IT support staff, the recruitment process itself can be challenging and when handled badly can prove a costly mistake. External organisations are equipped with highly skilled, qualified IT technicians that should be able to rectify problems and offer advice whenever your company needs it.
Perhaps the biggest benefit of outsourced IT is the added agility that it can give a business. Infrastructure can be a huge expense and before long will be outdated, and perhaps, unsuitable for your company’s needs.
Read more: How cloud is changing the role of IT
Third-parties can invest in the latest server and network technology because they are supplying it to numerous businesses and hence benefit from economies of scale. External IT resources are also more flexible and can be scaled up or down depending on the level of business your company is experiencing. Unused server capacity and other IT resources are a financial drain, so having the flexibility of a third-party IT supplier can give your business a real edge over its competitors.