When to Switch to a Managed Services Provider
A lot of businesses find it difficult to resolve their IT problems while tending to their day to day responsibilities. By outsourcing to a managed services provider they are able to relieve that burden and many businesses have already made the move to this model.
If your weighing up whether a managed services provider is right for your business, here are some signs that it may be the right time to hit the switch.
1. You don't have dedicated IT staff
Small companies often rely on tech-savvy members of staff to manage their IT problems as and when they occur. In a lot of businesses this will be a reactive role, instead of a proactive one; there is more emphasis on fixing problems now, rather than planning ahead for the future.
Sometimes there will be gaps in their knowledge, which can be difficult to fill, in comparison to a dedicated IT team or professional.
A managed services provider can anticipate potential problems and deploy updates or fixes to prevent it from occurring. These experienced professionals work with IT problems all day and need to keep their knowledge broad and up to date; this can be hard for ad-hoc IT staff to replicate.
2. You struggle to keep on-top of maintenance tasks
IT maintenance is definitely not a one-time task. The amount of hardware and software that needs maintaining can be a significant distraction, reducing productivity in the core business.
Managed service providers can automate many of these processes for you and advise or implement updates and maintenance at the optimum times (such as overnight) when it's likely to have less impact on your business.
MSPs usually offer round the clock monitoring day or night and fix problems before you have even noticed.
3. You want to save money
Depending on your current situation, hiring an MSP can either be an added expense, a cost-saving or both.
There is a lot of evidence to suggest that managed service providers save businesses money. Most notably an MSP can provide significant savings over hiring in-house IT professionals without the salary, training and pension requirement. They can also save you money by replacing manual processes (which can be time-consuming and error-prone) with automated ones.
The proactive planning and preparation that MSPs provide helps to prevent costly and time consuming problems from occurring. They can significantly reduce the risk of data-loss, and help to implement a swift recovery if there is a disaster.
Managed service providers work with vendors to ensure you receive the best deals on hardware, software and services.
4. Your business IT Demands are growing
IT infrastructure can often be a sticking point for business growth. MSPs offer guidance to make sure your hardware and software is always working as hard as you are and grows when you need it to.
MSPs can help you to ensure you're using the right setup for your needs, and don't spend more then you have to. For instance if your not already using VOIP and your call demands are growing, an MSP might recommend a implementing VOIP (Voice over IP) to make it easier and more cost-effective for you to scale.