The risks and rewards of outsourcing IT to managed providers.
As a small business owner, your time is already stretched to the max. Your attention is divided in every direction and you’ll likely be spending a lot of time focusing on parts of your business which you have no expertise in. Take your business’s enterprise network and IT infrastructure, for example.
Every business needs to be able to take advantage of the digital technology available – but not every business owner knows the ins and outs of complex IT systems. Many may have considered the option of outsourcing their IT support to managed providers, but remain uncertain about the pros and cons of putting this power in someone else’s hands.
Why small business owners may struggle with their IT
When you start out with your small business, the onus is on you to perform every function, from CEO down to secretary. This means you’re going to spend a lot of time performing tasks that you aren’t expert at or aren’t the best suited for, just to keep everything ticking.
Here are some of the issues small business owners face which can make managing their own IT infrastructure seem like a mountain too far:
- Because you’re required to fulfill many functions in your business (especially when you start out and before you make your first hires), your time will be very precious.
- Optimising your IT infrastructure requires time and dedication that many small business owners simply cannot afford to give. Many people train for years and attend certified courses in order to understand the ins-and-outs of how complex enterprise IT systems work. Small business owners can’t pick up this breadth of knowledge on the fly, so often have to make do with equal parts guesswork and luck when it comes to tailoring their IT systems to suit their business’s needs.
- Lastly, a full-time in-house IT expert is a significant time and expense commitment to make when your business is still in a growing phase. IT staff will still have to be trained in how your business works and require a salary, which is a major ongoing cost that many small businesses simply cannot afford in the early days.
This makes outsourcing your IT support seem like a very reasonable and appealing option – but what are the real risks and rewards of turning to a managed service provider?
Risk: Losing control
Passing the reigns of managing your IT infrastructure over to an external provider is tantamount to handing over a degree of control over your enterprise systems. You’ll retain full control of what happens, yes, but any changes to your system will need to go through the provider team. This will ultimately slow down the decision-making process.
Reward: Cost-and time effective
Paying for the IT support of a managed service provider is a small price when you consider the time it will save you down the track. With the responsibility of managing your IT infrastructure taken off your hands and left with an expert, you can play to your strengths and focus on adding value to your business. This could translate to cost savings down the track in both heightened productivity and a better fit-for-purpose IT system for your operations.
Risk: External issues affecting your business
Anything that impacts your managed service provider could ultimately come back to affect your business too. Issues such as electrical blackouts, cyber security breaches or other hits to the productivity of your managed IT provider could result in issues for your business’s network, or even compromise your entire enterprise IT system.
Reward: IT Expertise
Managed IT service providers are fundamentally geared up to assist with your technology systems. Quality providers such as Biztech will have a team of experts in managed IT, security solutions and network architecture which means that your business’s IT is in the safest hands possible. The best providers can also help to identify areas of opportunity for your business to expand or upgrade its IT infrastructure, becoming partners to your growth.
Thinking about outsourcing the IT support for your small business? Contact the Biztech team today.