Whether your business has 5 employees or 500 employees, they probably all rely on technology to conduct day-to-day business. Unfortunately, supporting that technology is never an easy task. Most SMB’s realize the need for dedicated IT support, but it can be hard to choose between hiring onsite personnel or outsourcing the support and network management to a third-party Managed Services Provider (MSP). There are pros and cons to both, so which one is right for your business?
Choosing Between a Managed Provider and In-House IT
The default choice for IT support in many workplaces is simply to hire someone to “fix” everything. Hiring a dedicated IT support person is appealing. After all, when your IT staff is in house, you get:
- Availability – In-house IT personnel are dedicated solely to your business so they’re always available to fix issues. Immediate response times result in quick remediation which is critical to minimize downtime and keep your employees productive.
- Control – Stationing your IT staff in-house provides visibility into their projects and activities and helps you ensure they are abiding by company policies.
- Specialization – Over time, an in-house IT staff will learn the ins and outs of your business. This knowledge will not only maximize efficiency, but it allow them to focus on tasks aligned with your organization’s overall objectives.
On the other hand, hiring an IT professional (or several professionals) isn’t always the best solution. In addition to paying salary and benefits for team members, you’ll also need to purchase equipment, software, and other tools for them to do their jobs effectively. And while you will own the assets, outfitting the organization with the proper infrastructure requires a significant amount of upfront capital that many businesses just don’t have.
Finally, an in-house IT department is not something you can build overnight. It can take time to find the right people and for them to become familiar with your systems. In the meantime, you’ll still have immediate issues that require attention.
Managed IT Services
Outsourcing the management of your network to a Managed Services Provider is an alternative that is more suitable for many types of businesses. Managed IT service providers have a number of benefits to SMBs:
- Expertise – One of the primary benefits to partnering with an MSP is that you can leverage the scope of their knowledge and experience. Unlike an in-house IT department, managed service providers work with a variety of businesses in many industries, giving them a wide knowledge base to help them develop custom solutions to meet your needs.
- Cost Savings – In the long run, hiring an MSP is less expensive than building an in-house IT department. Managed IT services can save businesses more than 50% compared to in-house IT, according to a study by CompTIA. For example, one issue can tie up your IT staff and cost you lots of time and resources. In contrast MSPs operate on a fixed monthly rate so costs are easy to forecast.
- Structure – A good Managed Services Provider should run just as smoothly an in-house IT department. Its processes are tested and refined to work, and they have detailed Service Agreements that clearly outline the responsibilities of the agreement.
- Tools – MSPs often include the tools they need to work as part of the monthly operating expense. This includes hardware like servers and routers, monitoring applications, ticketing software, antivirus, etc. Plus these tools have already been evaluated to ensure they work properly.
In short, Managed Service Providers offer enterprise-level support at an affordable monthly rate. In addition, they also give businesses access to knowledgeable IT professionals who can manage their technology and systems according to best practices.
Managed Service Providers in Oklahoma City
If you think your business could benefit from outsourcing IT to a managed service provider, call Xcel Office Solutions today. Our Managed IT services can allow you to free up your in-house IT resources and staff or to take your IT infrastructure to the next level. Call (405) 748-4222 today, or visit our Facebook or LinkedIn pages for more insight and help with your business technology needs.