How To Outsource Your IT Department
There are a variety of reasons why a company might wish to outsource their IT department. It could be due to an increase or decrease in staff and devices (i.e. no longer justifying a full time IT manager). It could also be due to movement to an additional location, advancements in technology. There are numerous benefits to using an outsourced IT company. In this blog we will look at the advantages of outsourcing and what to expect from the process.
Why Should You Outsource Your IT Department?
The main advantages of outsourcing your IT, is their expertise is often going to be greater than yours. IT requirements are not always top of your list when starting or running a business.
Outsourcing to professionals at the forefront of the information technology world, takes the pressure off small business owners. It gives them the freedom to concentrate on other parts of the business. If your company is growing and you have IT professionals working within their own department, outsourcing can take on tasks. This may be more cost-effective than hiring another person. In addition to leaving you time to run your business, an outsourced IT service understands cyber security. Whether you are working from your kitchen, or in a large office, IT related data needs to be kept secure and this is a key focus of an IT company. As it is not unusual for one outsourcing company to have several clients, they are efficient and experienced at keeping data stored securely and keeping on top of that protection.
They also understand how to troubleshoot and fix issues quickly, with expert staff available and 24/7 monitoring, prepared for any eventuality. With this expertise at your fingertips, a good IT company will know when they can handle minor issues themselves or alert you to serious cyber incidents. Speaking of cyber incidents, as they become more complex and frequent, an IT support company will be working to prevent issues as well as respond to any that do happen. Without their expertise, you are reliant on you and your staff to spot, comprehend and manage threats.
What Should You Look For In An Outsourced IT Team?
The reason you are looking to outsource, or the particular issue you are experiencing, is likely to be the main motivator behind who you choose to outsource to. To kick start the process you will want to find a company that does provide the services you need.
If you are unsure of some of the terms used, look for IT Support Helpdesks, Proactive Monitoring, Network Design, Strategic Advice, Patch Management and IT Security. These services keep your network safe, secure, looked after and offer assistance and advice. Disaster Recovery and Backup help you quickly get back to normal if the worst happens. Additional services that can be invaluable, are Email Management and Software Implementation.
These are related to the business software you could use such as Microsoft 365 or Outlook. A good IT company will plan an implementation strategy, action it and carry on looking after the software once it goes live.
How Do You Choose An IT Outsourcer?
Once you have found some IT companies that provide the service you need, look to see if they provide a free IT audit or any other consultative advice free of charge. This gives you a chance to hear how they work, what they think of your current IT capabilities and what they would do to improve them. They should be more than happy to talk you through the results in a way you can understand.
Red flags should raise if they throw a lot of jargon and scary sounding technical terms at you, trying to get you to panic and accept their assistance. It is important to understand that IT companies will use technical terms and might find something concerning in their IT audit. However, a good company will not try to alarm you into buying anything. They will also be able to explain what they mean in terms a layperson can understand.
That said, you cannot expect to become an IT expert yourself, and you will not always understand everything. This is why trust is a key factor in your choice as well. To establish trust, look for an established company with positive reviews and testimonials from their clients and case studies about their work. Check out their certifications and their website for trustworthy sources and up-to-date resources. A good IT company should be able to walk the walk and talk the talk.
What Happens Next?
Once you have chosen your preferred outsourced IT company, you can expect them to put together a strong implementation strategy for the services you have agreed upon. In addition to a monthly fee, there may be start-up costs for software or security set-up. All these costs should be discussed transparently before anything is signed. You can expect them to ask for information on your current IT situation so have that information ready.
This might be as simple as knowing who your internet provider is and whether you are allowed to drill cables through the office walls. More complex questions might arise but ideally your new outsourced IT department will be communicating with you throughout the process, and they can help you get together, the information you need.
If you are thinking about outsourcing your IT department, read more about how it can support your business here. We are a friendly and efficient IT company that pride ourselves in providing trustworthy IT services of a high standard and would be delighted to hear from you.