When faced with decisions regarding IT systems, business owners often go one of two ways: they’re excited about the possibilities the technology can provide, or they panic at the high costs and potential issues that it can bring.
Most people fall into the latter group, with many business decision makers viewing internal IT problems as a hindrance to the growth of their company. This leads many to look outside of their own business, instead placing their IT systems in the hands of external companies – but what are the benefits?
In this article, we’ll explain the ups and downs of working with an MSP (managed service provider) instead of using an internal IT team.
Avoid Setup Costs
Regardless of the age or size of your business, you’ll find that there are a range of costs associated with starting up or growing your IT department. Even before you’ve figured out who will be part of your team, you have to face losses of thousands in the form of recruitment costs, and the training that comes after hiring successful candidates will take another chunk out of your budget.
You’ll want to shop around when looking for a managed service provider that meets your needs, but it likely won’t take anywhere near as much time as it would to recruit your own in house IT staff.
Working with an MSP is a win on their end too, as they’ll be expanding their client base – this means that they’ll be wanting to satisfy your every need, and you’ll likely be receiving a lot of tempting offers if it becomes known that you’re interested. Rather than taking on a team with limited experience and training them yourself, you’ll be working right away with a group of specialists already trained in whatever you need.
Custom Service For Your Business
It may seem like working with an MSP takes away the sense of control you currently have over your IT systems, but the bespoke service that MSPs provide ensures that you’ll be getting exactly what your business needs from their services.
If you decide to start using a managed service provider, you’ll create a service level agreement (or SLA) together – this is a detailed document that outlines your every need and what the MSP can provide in terms of the type of support, the support hours, any additional services, and more. No two businesses are exactly the same, and MSPs know this; you won’t find a reputable MSP who just provides one size fits all packages. It might take some time to figure out the specifics of your SLA, but an experienced MSP can guide you through the process.
By working out an SLA that suits the needs of your business, you can be sure that you’re only paying for exactly what your business needs, meaning that you can save money without compromising on the quality of your support.
Support Through The Night
Depending on how vital the running of your IT system is to your business, you’ll have different needs regarding 24/7 support and maintenance. If this is a service you think would suit your company, you’ll be glad to know that you can save money by doing this through an MSP.
You might leave the office each night, but that doesn’t mean your IT system checks out with you – if you want to stop potential issues that happen at night or on weekends, you’ll need a dedicated team who can keep an eye on your systems outside of normal hours.
Almost every MSP can provide a service like this, and the majority are likely already working through the night to support other companies. Therefore, adding 24/7 support to your SLA might not cost as much as you may assume – after all, they’re already awake!
Once you’ve spoken to a range of MSPs, you’ll want to think about the additional costs associated with their nighttime services and compare with how much this would cost you with an in-house team – chances are that you could save some money by outsourcing.
Ever Evolving Experience
You probably already know that IT developments only get faster and faster, meaning that technology that was once expensive and on the pulse is now available to smaller businesses for a fraction of the price – but what does this mean for an in-house IT team? If you’ve had them for a few years, they won’t know what to do with these innovations – they stopped gaining broader experience when you hired them!
Though this means that they’ll know your systems inside and out, this can prevent technological growth for your company in the future. Even if they’re willing to try, a lack of hands on knowledge could result in a greater risk of human error.
As the specialists at an MSP work with a range of clients at a time, with new businesses being brought in on a regular basis, you’ll know that they have hands-on experience with a huge range of tech. If you want to invest in the latest innovation, they can rise to the challenge.
If you choose an excellent MSP with many years of experience, they’ll likely be able to predict the behaviour of some of your systems, and more specifically the issues they could face. An internal team may also have these capabilities, as they’ll have worked with only your systems for a long period, but you may get more value for money from an MSP.
You might think that you need a team to be physically with the network to be able to monitor it, but by working with an MSP who is using an SD WAN, this doesn’t have to be the case. This allows them to monitor your network devices from anywhere, and straightforwardly make the necessary adjustments to solve issues remotely.
This means that you’re likely to receive a notification saying that an issue has been fixed overnight, as opposed to the headache of walking into work only to find that your systems have failed. By dodging the losses that downtime can bring, you’ll no doubt be growing your business in an efficient, cost effective way.