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Should a Small Business Use Managed IT Services?
Small business owners have a lot to deal with in order to keep their day-to-day operations running smoothly. Some aspects of keeping an up-and-coming company ticking over have to be handled in-house. But in the case that outsourcing is a possibility, it’s always worth considering. This is where managed IT services come into the picture, providing a number of benefits that make them well suited to small businesses, not just their larger contemporaries.
Let’s look at why embracing this type of solution makes sense, and what other considerations you need to keep in mind when looking for a provider of managed IT services.
Bridging the skills gap is important
The main reason to work with a company that provides managed IT support services like USWired is that it allows your small business to tap into the expertise of seasoned tech specialists, without needing to add permanent hires to your staff.
Outsourcing is impactful across the board because of the bridging of the skills gap that it provides. And the upshot is that you don’t need to be limited by the knowledge and training of employees, or have to go through the arduous and expensive process of recruiting someone to tackle your IT issues full time.
Scalability is available
Another reason to strike up a relationship with a managed IT services provider is that it allows your small business to grow and evolve outside of the usual restrictions on tech adoption that could otherwise hold it back.
Say you want to increase the scope of your server infrastructure to accommodate anticipated seasonal spikes in demand for your products. This will inevitably lead to a more challenging configuration of mission-critical systems, which requires advanced monitoring and maintenance, along with the complexity of the initial setup.
Prior to managed IT services entering the mainstream, a small business might not be in a position to maximize its potential to capitalize on such opportunities. Today, working with third party providers empowers you to spread your wings, without the caveats or compromises.
Flexibility is assured for managed IT services
Following on from the advantages of scalability, there’s the concept of flexibility in the context of managed IT services.
You don’t need to be put off from the prospect of adopting a hardware or software setup that is truly bespoke, because almost any conceivable configuration will be implementable and supportable by top tier providers.
Whether you want to host everything on-site to exert total control over your IT infrastructure, or you are happy to rely on remote hosting to further free yourself from the burden of overseeing your tech assets, a good support service will be there to back you up regardless of the decisions you make and the routes you take.
Uptime is preserved
If your IT assets are taken out of action, then the immediate and ongoing costs to your business will be steep, and will keep growing with every passing minute of downtime.
This is often the key to understanding why small businesses fail. Everything can be going smoothly, but one seemingly minor hiccup can create a chain reaction of events from which up and coming companies simply are not equipped to recover.
So while you may hear of major organizations suffering protracted outages before getting back to business as usual, what you also need to appreciate is just how much this hurts their profits, and what a similar scenario could mean for a startup that hasn’t got any kind of financial safety net available to it.
In terms of selling points, mitigating the likelihood of unplanned downtime is perhaps the most pertinent when weighing up whether or not to procure managed IT services.
The operative word here is unplanned, because of course at certain points you’ll need to take systems offline to roll out updates and perform maintenance. With a third party provider on your side, you’ll additionally be able to plan when to schedule this work so that it doesn’t create a kerfuffle, while also augmenting uptime on a moment to moment basis.
Costs are kept in check
We have already discussed elements of the value represented by managed IT services for small business customers. From the affordability compared with hiring full time team members, to the ability to avoid expensive unplanned downtime, the right package can leave you with more money to play with, even if there will be a price to pay for the support services themselves.
The aforementioned scalability and flexibility of managed IT support services is also relevant here. You won’t have to justify the use of a one-size-fits all package, but should instead only expect to pay for exactly the amount of support and coverage that you require, whether that’s a bundle which focuses on remote support, or an arrangement which allows you to call out technicians to visit you on-premises.
Final thoughts on managed IT services
So should small businesses outsource the management of their IT services? In a word, yes, so long as it makes sense both from a practical and a financial perspective.
You should still take the time to compare providers and select a competitive package, but it’s hard to argue that this isn’t a necessity in an era when organizations of all sizes are increasingly reliant on having persistent access to IT assets. Take your time choosing and check the reputation of vendors, and you’ll be good to go.