Are Managed IT Services Right For Me?
When you run a business, it’s a great idea and quite natural to focus all of your energy on increasing revenue, building the team, and creating customer loyalty (gotta get those Google Reviews up!). Naturally, the operational aspects of your business are kinda boring. And many times… forgotten or neglected.
However, did you know that while it can be easy to forget about IT strategy (boring ole’ operations), doing so can be a serious mistake that could leave you bleeding money? For many small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs), exploding IT costs, performance and scalability issues can make it difficult to secure the IT Operations capability that’s necessary to take you to the next level of business growth while reducing risk. That’s where we come in.
If you’re not familiar with managed IT services and its benefits to small business, you may wonder if outsourcing IT is a good idea. To help you make this decision, here is a look at 5 signs that it might be time for you to consider a managed service provider (MSP) like us.
Establishing your own IT department is expensive. As you continue to expand your business, it’s unlikely that you can afford top IT talent. In addition, IT experts tend to be highly specialized, much like doctors. A networking expert isn’t likely a software development expert. A SaaS application administrator probably hasn’t dug into software defined networking. There are highly experienced cross-discipline IT experts out there, but they are crazy expensive… and one of them just happens to run Carmichael Consulting Solutions!
Fortunately, partnering with an MSP can help you to bring IT costs and complexity under control.
MSPs have the resources, focus and experience to find top talent. They provide continuous training to ensure their IT personnel are up to date on the latest industry advances. When you work with an MSP, you can rest assured knowing that you are getting the best IT services for your budget, as MSPs only work with the most experienced IT professionals.
Rather than having to hire, train, and maintain an in-house IT team, partnering with an MSP allows you to pay for the IT services you need, as you need them. This can be a relief for small businesses with a limited IT budget and can help them to better predict and budget for their IT expenses each month.
Additionally, since the costs of hiring, onboarding, and maintaining IT personnel are spread across the MSPs’ customers, IT services provided through an MSP are often much more affordable than maintaining an in-house IT department, helping you to scale back ballooning IT labor costs.
Insurmountable IT Demand
Another clear sign that you should consider outsourcing your company’s IT needs is if you are continually struggling to meet your company’s growing needs. For businesses going through phases of rapid growth, it can be extremely difficult to keep up with IT demands, as it is impossible to learn all of the complex solutions overnight to select the right solution for your company’s needs. In fact, you may find that each time you hire new personnel and expand infrastructure, demand is already outpacing your IT capacity. This is where it can be extremely beneficial to partner with a managed service provider.
When you work with an MSP, it’s extremely easy to scale your IT services to meet your company’s ever-changing needs. MSPs have the resources and know-how to quickly meet your changes in demand.
Natural Disasters & Ransomware are ever on the rise. Designing the network, systems and IT strategy for business continuity is increasingly important, because businesses increasingly rely on IT. IT is now critical to nearly all businesses. That fact isn’t changing any time soon.
Downtime can be a sign that your current IT strategy is lacking, and extended periods of downtime can begin to impact both your bottom and top line (think retail). Not only can system downtime be costly, but frequent downtime can also negatively impact your credibility, which could further impact your business. Quoting average downtime costs per hour at an aggregate level for all businesses is fairly pointless, because your business is different, but the point is… if you can’t perform your critical functions, you suffer.
If you are experiencing network downtime even annually, it’s time to consider the switch to outsourced, managed IT services. An MSP can help you to better scale your services to meet your needs, and they will come up with a plan to restructure your IT strategy to ensure that it is streamlined and efficient.
Lacking Proactive Assistance
One of the most frustrating things about not having in-house IT staff is how to keep up with all of the latest trends in the IT industry. But staying on top of the latest technology is critical in helping to ensure that you stay productive and protected from the latest cyber threats and natural disasters. Oftentimes, SMBs don’t spend enough time and money to research and invest in the latest advancements in IT.
That’s where partnering with an MSP can benefit you. An MSP can help you to stay on top of the latest technology with resources to research, develop, implement, and communicate new strategies to improve efficiency and build up your defenses. You’ll feel confident that you’ll have access to experts with wisdom on the latest technology and security strategies – helping to boost productivity, minimize downtime, and maximize security.
Not only is the proactive consultation from an MSP important, but the work! 45% of the work we do at Carmichael is proactive maintenance. Did you fix that backup failure on that workstation? Did you see that credential breach report from the darkweb and change your password? Did you apply the latest patches? Did you see that Pegasus spyware for the Mac? That list is never ending my friends.
Outsourcing your company’s IT needs can then lift a significant weight off your shoulders with your needs being looked after by experts in the field.
Our Founder and President, Tyler Jones, goes into a bit more detail with an analogy in this YouTube video:
Difficulty Focusing on Your Business
As an owner, your focus should be on continuing to do what you do best — grow and expand your business. But if you are trying to maintain and improve IT capabilities, your focus might be on trying to keep up with the IT demands instead. Not only would you be worrying about some new solution you might have to implement, but you may also find yourself spending time fixing small, one-off issues.
Any time you put into maintaining your company’s IT capability & infrastructure is time that could be spent on your core business. Not to mention the fact that though you are incredibly competent and can probably get many things working well on your own, including IT, but you just can’t be an expert in something you don’t specialize in for a living.
An experienced MSP will have more than enough resources to handle your company’s IT needs, allowing you and your staff to focus your attention on growth.
Of course, the greatest soft benefit of working with a managed service provider is your peace of mind. For many small business owners, trying to keep up with growing IT demands can become increasingly costly, time-consuming, and stressful. With a limited IT budget, you will likely find yourself wasting precious time working on IT tasks. With limited resources, you may find yourself constantly worrying about whether you are doing enough to protect your company and keep it running. And you probably aren’t!
For SMBs who still maintain or are thinking about creating an in-house IT department, outsourcing IT needs to a managed service provider can provide you with superior services at an affordable price, ensuring that you have access to the IT services you need for stability and performance.
At Carmichael Consulting Solutions, we know that it can be difficult to choose what is right for your business, so book some time with our team for a free consultation and learn if managed IT services are right for your company.