Businesses have been using IT Managed Services for many years, we used to call it outsourced IT and moving everything to countries like India was very popular, until you tried to contact them! So the idea is not new. Nowadays, nearly all IT companies are offering a Managed Service route, but why is this?
Simple: it is now so much easier with the adoption of cloud technologies.
Will IT Managed Services save my company money?
The answer to that is yes and no, and that is not me hedging my bets; it is me being honest. The first question you have to ask yourself is how you define the term saving money. Are you comparing a direct cost of hiring an IT professional to look after your systems against a managed services with a company like Unleashed? Then the answer could be yes. On the other hand, if you are talking about a company owner/director looking after the IT systems because they have a bit of knowledge and set it up originally then the answer would be no, because at the moment you are not paying anything.
So why should I adopt an IT Managed service approach?
If you are growing a business then you have to look at cost in a different way. You have to look at what other benefits you can get, and to do that we have to look at what an IT Managed service really is. When you are looking at the ways to drive your business forward, IT has to be at the forefront. So with a managed service you are essentially entrusting your IT functions to a third party company. By doing this you are reaping a whole host of business benefits – you reduce IT internal overheads, get access to different skill sets, and you have flexible staffing and can increase efficiency.
But it is not all plain sailing, you have to choose your IT partner wisely but as already mentioned the benefits can outweigh the cost. Let’s look at them in more detail.
Get access to different skill sets
IT staff do a great job under very difficult circumstances. One major benefit is that they know your systems inside out and back to front, a lot of the time they have designed and built them. One downside is the fact they have designed and built them – this means it is their baby; they are very reluctant to change, they don’t keep up with current market trends and your IT systems go backwards. We see this often.
By implementing IT Managed Services, you get a wide range of skill sets and the provider can keep you up to date with what other similar companies are doing. They can help you to design your IT Systems around what the business wants and not the other way around. This mean you can end up saving money, by implementing an IT Strategy and setting aside a yearly budget to enable you to carry this out.
Focus on the core activities of the business
If you are a business owner or Director and you look after the IT as a side line it will be taking up a lot of your time. This means, whilst you are sorting out the IT you are not concentrating on your core skills and the business may suffer – its certainly not cost effective and your IT systems can quickly become outdated.
If you implement an IT Managed Services Strategy you can share the risk with your IT Partner. More and more companies are implementing Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery solutions. This means ensuring your data and key systems are backed up or replicated to a second site, which in turn entails a partner to work with and one that can assist you and ensure that in the event of a failure or disaster that you are fully covered. This alone can relieve a lot of stress from company owners. Statistics state 80% of small business will suffer severe financial problems if they have a major IT failure. Most DR solutions can have you fully operational within the hour.
What is my next step?
I have only listed a few benefits of an IT Managed Service, there are many more. To find out how your business can benefit, Unleashed advise you carry out an IT Strategy Report. This process – managed by us will get all your stakeholders together and allow you to discover the answers to many difficult questions about your IT and how you need to take it forward and provide a basis on which to build your IT strategy for the next 5 years.