Internal IT Department Vs Outsourced IT
An ongoing debate that will continue to rage on is the Internal IT vs Outsourced IT.
Should a growing company recruit/train and build its own IT team or should they simply outsource the whole lot to an IT company who will manage the whole process for them?
The answer, of course, is it depends. There is a tipping point in terms of the number of devices being managed, to where having an Internal IT team becomes cost effective. This number is normally quite high in the hundreds of devices. That said, many smaller businesses still have just a single IT person in charge of managing the IT for the business but is that the most cost-effective decision?
Internal IT Person
An internal IT department for some means control, for others it’s the line of sight leadership (I can see them working). Either way, it makes the business feel like they are more likely to get the response they think they need because there is someone on hand to fix things as they happen.
This approach is very much firefighting. The Internal person will chase around most of the day reacting to users’ needs as and when they need them. The problems can start when the IT person is off sick or on holiday and you can be sure that’s when things are likely to really go wrong.
This is when a 2nd more junior person is sometimes taken on, to help manage the workloads and cover for sickness and holidays. This is a further salary as well as additional training costs to bring the junior or 2nd person up to speed.
The Internal IT person or people quickly become indispensable. They understand every little thing about the technology setup of the company and there is no way the employer could lose them. They are invited to meetings with new software vendors and the business owners have little choice but to take their advice and word on all technology decisions.
This is a very common scenario. The company’s growth is potentially at risk based on a single person trying to protect their job.
As technology evolves and better services and tools enter the market in order to maintain/automate or secure the IT systems, the business owners are left with two possible scenarios.
Either the IT person requests the company purchases the software (more expense) or they dismiss it in order to protect their job and this results in a poorer experience of IT for the end users.
Each business is dependent on an individual or a few individuals as to the way their IT is supported.
It is natural for these people to protect their jobs although this might not always be the best and most cost effective solution for the business in the long term.
The common misconception is that outsourcing IT is more expensive than employing somebody. However, this is simply not the case. In fact, in most cases actually outsourcing your IT can be more cost effective.
With Managed Services there is a fixed monthly cost that includes 24/7 support 365 days a year. It also includes all of the latest in proactive monitoring software included in the price.
At BCS we also have our Net Admin team who are dedicated resource tasked with improving your IT systems and experience. These are the kinds of tasks an Internal IT person never gets round to doing due to constant firefighting.
To top it all off there is our Learning Zone that enables your staff to attend training sessions on popular Microsoft office applications and Windows 10.
All of this in one fixed monthly cost.
Using a Managed Services provider may not mean having someone physically on site jumping around your offices all day reacting to problems as they crop up. This is because our systems are likely to have spotted the problem before you have or before it actually happens and logged a ticket on your behalf. The chances are the engineer will have fixed the issue before you can get to the phone.
Our Service Level agreements and our guarantee to our clients are that all business limiting support tickets will be responded to within 15 minutes and any other ticket within 1 hour. So even if you have 3 tickets raised by our systems or by your staff all 3 will get responded to and dealt with.
There is also the added advantage of being able to benefit from the combined knowledge and experience of around 20 of skilled IT experts in various positions that all qualified and up to date at all times.
What about understanding your business and the way it works?
Our onboarding process and the way we do business means we view this very much as a strategic partnership and documenting your system and understanding the unique ways your company works is of course in our interest to understand and be part of. We have no hidden agenda and your success and growth are ours as well.
Quarterly Business Reviews with our Account Management teams mean an opportunity to review performance, look at your plans, not just technology related, but also get an understanding of the whole picture. It’s a valuable opportunity for us to spend some time with you – we pride ourselves on excellent customer relationships and we want to know what is important to you.
Our Account managers are there to ensure that can plan and understand the technology that underpins your business and ensures that it is providing you with what you need when you need it and at within the budget you have.
Technology needs to be an enabler in your business that is silent and simply just works. We have entire teams of people that can work round the clock if needed and you can be sure that you are getting access and the benefits of the latest technology at all times.
We are measured by response times and up-time the two factors that matter to you the most.
But is it cost effective?
Again the answer is it depends but in many cases the answer is often yes. When you factor in all of the costs of an Internal person plus an assistant as well as training, tools and services it really does add up. This does not factor the cost to your business for falling behind with technology while competitors are potentially striding ahead.
If you are a business that has 20 – 100 computers, you may find that an outsourced Managed Service provider will not only save you money but actually provide you with a far superior service.
I know what you are thinking… we would say this as a managed service provider. However, our intention here is to inform and educate as many business owners as possible that there is another option. One that means you are not reliant on one or two people to entrust such a pivotal element of your company’s growth and success to.