Business IT Support
Sometimes it’s easy to figure out what you can do yourself, and what you need help with. Most of us, for example, go to the dentist for toothache these days rather than employing the old string on the doorknob method.
For your business, the decision can be much tougher. What’s strategically and financially sound to keep inhouse? What can be outsourced to get better value for money or special expertise? How much should be invested in IT?
Internal Vs. Outsourced IT
Overall, it appears that more and more UK organisations are outsourcing at least part of their IT. Last year, a study from PA Consulting showed that 31% of those asked were planning to outsource more. The main reasons were to reduce costs and support business change. Improving service quality is also important, for both staff and customers.
There are, of course, upsides and downsides to both internal and outsourced IT services.
*External IT companies can send engineers to site on either a scheduled or ad-hoc basis, while internal IT is always onsite.
Can outsourcing work for you?
Outsourcing comes in many flavours, and every business has its own requirements and challenges to consider. Whichever sector you’re operating in, here are five common benefits:
- Your IT systems, software and hardware can be fully managed 24/7, every day of the year. That’s often hard for an organisation to deliver themselves. This around-the-clock approach means that performance issues can be jumped on quickly, sometimes while you’re still fast asleep.
- Compared to in-house teams, you’ll get lower costs and other efficiencies. A third party can provide the same (or better) service at a lower cost because of their economies of scale. Unlike you, they can spread the salary costs of their IT expertise across different clients or buy-in specialist skills you don’t have access to.
- Better reliability means less disruption and downtime. That’s good news for your IT or office management team. It also means a productivity boost across other teams, helping your organisation get more done or grow faster. A managed service provider (MSP) will ensure your network and infrastructure are optimised, using the latest tools and technology.
- Unlimited access to the service desk. That means your employees can solve more of their problems first time, whether they’re working at the office, home, or out and about. Beyond that first level of support, you can expect to see a specialist team of IT engineers and consultants all certified in the latest tech. They cover everything from cyber security to network support, business telephony and digital transformation.
- Focus on the big picture. Outsourced clients typically have a dedicated Account Manager. Using the breathing space that outsourcing creates, they can work closely with you to work on a strategic roadmap for IT. That allows your organisation to spend more time looking ahead and preparing for tomorrow’s challenges.
This last point is vital, but hard to measure. Transforming your IT does not usually come from a one-off decision. It’s not about choosing one provider, buying one type of hardware, or investing in some bespoke software. Rather, it comes from the ability to react to changes that are getting faster and more unpredictable.
This means that organisations must be able to scan the horizon for the most useful new technologies. They must stay abreast of manufacturers and software suppliers, understanding their relative strengths and how they might support the business needs. Outsourcing lets you do this, all the while allowing your team to focus on their core competencies and free up resources.
What about data security?
Some business leaders fear that data security will be compromised when a third party gets involved. That’s understandable, especially in sectors that hold confidential information, such as healthcare, education, or finance. The truth is, all reputable MSPs know what they’re doing with data. At enablesIT, for example, we’re proud to be ISO 27001 compliant, following the internationally recognised framework that protects your information.
Of course, outsourcing isn’t necessarily a magic bullet that solves all your IT headaches overnight. No honest supplier would promise otherwise. A healthier perspective is to think about juggling trade-offs or considering a hybrid approach, outsourcing certain elements that your in-house team don’t have the expertise or time to do.
When it comes to execution, any complex transition will hit some teething problems. We work with our clients to mitigate these issues, using good planning, trust, and open communication that demystifies the technology. You know what you’re paying for, and what your end result will be, without having to worry about the technical details.
Sign up for a free audit
If you’re weighing up the pros and cons of outsourcing, here’s a sensible step that won’t cost you a penny. Simply sign-up for one of our free, no-obligation audits. They’re designed to give you a set of recommendations to improve your company’s approach to IT.
One of our audits will help you better understand the opportunities and threats to your IT systems. With a minimum of tech talk, we’ll compare how things are today with an ideal (but realistic) state that meets your objectives.
To find out more, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call +44 (0) 1483 388 100. We have a wide client base ranging across legal, financial, charity, education, healthcare, and other sectors. You can trust that, with us, you’re in safe hands.