If you are considering outsourcing your IT Department, either entirely or as an augmentation to your current IT staff, to a Managed IT Services company you’re likely to get at least a few objections along the way from various sources.
One of the biggest downfalls when companies start comparing and contrasting costs, employees, outsource companies, and technology in general is they start by thinking what their IT will cost them, when instead they should be instead looking to answer the question of what they can get from implementing the best, and correct IT solution for their business and its needs. You want to invest your money in the long game and your end result. We at LogicCloud IT have seen so many companies over the years just throw money at IT and hope they chose correctly only to have it wasted on the wrong solution for their needs.
Planning to invest in a managed IT services provider (MSP) is one of those decisions that can often incite many questions, concerns, or even fear, while the decision makers work to justify IT costs and determine the value of IT outsourcing. Many times, this can slow the process and leave your business at a standstill. LogicCloud IT wants to help you avoid the delay and hassle by shedding some light on one of the most common questions asked by companies from just 1 person to thousands, when it comes to IT outsourcing.
Is an in-house IT department cheaper and the best option?
Businesses often believe they can manage all their IT needs by hiring in-house, sometimes at a low rate, believing that they will save over the costs of outsourcing to a trusted managed IT services provider. This can often be a dangerous assumption that can lead to business outages, unhappy staff, and surprise costs. There are several factors companies should consider before adopting this belief.
They terk ‘er jerbs!
All joking aside, I always like to talk about this first because, if you have an in-house staff already and you start bringing up the thought of using outsourcing to augment the team, especially with managed IT services, you will almost always get immediate negative reasons why to not outsource. Not only is this normal, but it is to be expected in most situations. If you were in fear that you would be without a job you would want to fight for it too, right? The problem is that this is an older school way of thinking, in fact most reputable and trusted managed IT providers goals are not to take over and kick out existing IT staff. Instead, they prefer to work with an in-house IT person with larger businesses to offload much of the low-end work and allow that person to better focus on longer team goals, implementations, or onsite work. A great working relationship can be formed in this team approach to larger business IT, and the results of a great team approach like this are always an amazing technology experience for all the stakeholders because you get all the benefits of managed IT and in-house staff, without many of the risks and costs associated with many of the toolsets required to provide fully managed IT.
The costs of IT staff
When people start thinking about what in-house IT staff costs are, they start looking at many of the same hard and soft benefits and costs of non-IT employees such as salary, health, 401k, vacation time, licenses, etc… Often overlooked are the other costs associated with hiring and retaining a proficient, knowledgeable and evolving IT staff, and these costs can accumulate quickly. It’s common for companies to consider an in-house IT team to be a financially sensible choice, but it’s imperative your business consider the unpredictable contingencies that may arise when relying upon a few employees, or one person, to service your entire IT environment.
Reputable IT outsourcing providers spend significant time and money educating, training and certifying their IT staff because the knowledge, experience and skills their employees acquire can be utilized time and time again to serve several clients. The average Sr. level IT person at a reputable managed IT services firm maintains 2-3 industry certifications and attends 1-2 technology events per year. The costs for just one IT industry certification exam on average can range from $300 - $1,200 for a self-study exam and $5,000 - $11,000 + for a classroom trained exam; and many certifications require multiple exams to achieve. Many certifications also require re-certification exams to keep up with the changing technology to maintain that certification. The costs of sending just one IT staff member to industry events and shows so they can keep up with every changing technology landscape can also range from a few hundred dollars for a half-day local event, to $12,000 + for a multi-day out of state event.
While in-house employees may have the technical ability to learn and implement a specific project; they may be required to use the knowledge and skills they honed from that process maybe few times, if at all, in the future. The hours and funds your business invested in training and education may prove to be unhelpful as new technologies evolve which will require additional training and costs to keep up to date. A reputable outsourced IT provider will be able to provide your business with skilled, certified, and knowledgeable IT staff proficient in the latest technology and capable of implementing and supporting a variety of solutions and serve your IT environment effectively. This will allow your organization to focus on the growth of your business instead of the necessary means to keep pace with the latest technology trends and evolving issues.
Staffing and Availability
So, you have decided that your business may be able to afford hire someone capable of providing the extensive services and knowledge offered by an MSP, which will likely cost your organization a minimum of $110,000 a year in just salary costs; or you are OK with hiring a far cheaper employee with less experience and knowledge. You have accepted the risk that the employee may leave your company to look for a more advantageous career that allows them exposure to more technologies, so you will need to re-invest in a new employee. Now, that that employee is only one person and is realistically incapable of being constantly available in the evenings, on weekends, when taking sick days, on vacation, running late to work, handling prior commitments, or when trying to service the needs of multiple employees at once; so you need to either make the choice to hire a second, usually lower skill level, IT employee to help fill the gaps (and hope they aren’t sick when the other is on vacation); or you have accepted that there will be times that arise when you will have important or even critical issue that could go days or even weeks without any attention. Would you be OK if your company’s phones, email, or critical database application were down and you weren’t able to get ahold of your IT person because they are on a 7 day cruise? A managed IT services provider will likely offer 24/7/365 availability for critical issues alongside their remote monitoring and support from a team of IT experts available to support any issues that arise and to ensure the health of your IT infrastructure.
On-site vs. remote support
Companies frequently believe that having their IT support staff on-site is better because the person is right there. Unfortunately, they forget to consider the services beyond end-user “hey, can you give me a hand” support that allow your IT infrastructure to be a tool to enable your company instead of just being a commodity. While it may cost more to invest in a certified and trusted MSP over hiring your friend’s, brothers, uncles, cousin who is “good with computers”, your business will gain more from the increased efficiency and seamless processes the MSP’s solutions allow for.
Smaller scale in-house IT rarely has the tools and skill set to be capable of managing end-user support, 24/7 monitoring, system updates, projects, developing proactive strategies and gaining knowledge all at once. MSP’s have multiple people with multiple levels of skills and can provide all of these services while working with your company to determine the best solutions and strategies for the future of your IT environment and your business as a whole. Even basic tools for IT management can cost a company thousands of dollars in additional IT costs per year, and will many times lack additional features or benefits that allow for effective time use over those that cost more; and no tool is 100% touchless, so someone is going to need to spend time managing and maintaining them.
Reputable managed IT services providers will employ a proactive approach to managing your systems versus only the reactionary approach to fix the issues as they happen. The MSP’s team of skilled technicians and support staff along with their tools and technologies, can often identify and remedy issues before your business is aware they were even a problem.
Predictable IT Budget
An MSP that offers Managed IT services can offer one final advantage that an in-house or as-needed support solution cannot, a predictable IT budget. Reputable and trusted MSP’s such as LogicCloud IT will have support and management solutions with flat monthly rates based on either devices or users, in which all contracted services, such as unlimited support, are included. These predictable costs afford your business peace of mind and employee cost predictability, so you can enhance your business without worrying about a possible flood of urgent and unexpected technology or support costs.
Ready to find out more?
Providing the best-fit and most valuable solutions for your unique IT environment is part of our mission at LogicCloud IT. Contact us today to learn more about how you can transform your business with the right technology solutions and services.