While all professional organizations rely on robust IT infrastructure and management, small businesses in particular often lack the resources to provide for independent services, which gives them a competitive disadvantage, limits growth, and provides them with fewer IT solutions.
Small businesses can successfully combat this situation by outsourcing some or all IT tasks to a comprehensive technology service provider in the New Orleans metropolitan area. With a trustworthy IT consulting company in your corner, you can accelerate growth, reduce costs, and enhance scalability, among a myriad of other benefits.
A large part of what IT consultants and management companies do is preventative. Their operations are designed to prevent technical issues from occurring by constantly monitoring various aspects of your organization’s IT, contributing writer Dan Franciscus explains in an article for Business News Daily. Staffed with skilled personnel that possesses a range of knowledge about various IT functions, managed service providers (MSPs) are equipped to troubleshoot any problem. While their main focus is preventing technical issues, they also know disasters happen that put your systems and data at risk. They could help you create a viable disaster recovery plan to help with restoration if a significant disaster were to occur.
Outsourcing information systems management, as opposed to maintaining a dedicated IT staff, has become an increasingly popular option for small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs). This practice allows companies to control expenses and save money. Rather than doing all your IT in-house—which makes those expenses a substantial part of your budget—you can outsource certain technology services in response to your changing business needs, freeing up capital to devote to other areas of operation that more directly produce revenue. Many IT management companies work with you to determine what you need and can afford. Even if you only choose to outsource specific tasks—such as management of networking components, routers and switches, server upkeep, and desktop support—your internal staff can stay focused on the responsibilities for which they were hired.
Outsourcing or working with an IT consultant also keeps managers themselves from not having to split time overseeing an area that rests outside the realm of their expertise, leaving less time to focus on other strategic issues related to managing the organization. Instead, IT tasks fall into the hands of specialists who are trained in that particular area and will handle the same functions in an easier, more efficient manner, which helps the company’s bottom line.
Finally, for small companies who might struggle to stay up to date with cutting-edge technology and top-of-the-line information systems and services, working with a comprehensive IT management company that does have access to those resources helps to level the playing field. As Franciscus explains, MSPs support many clients, which translates into having “more resources at their disposal and a deeper knowledge base to draw from.”
Small businesses don’t have to continually make huge investments acquiring the latest technology or experimenting with various solutions, and they can use those cost savings in other areas without their IT suffering.
What tech tasks can small businesses outsource?
In another article for Business New Daily, tech writer Sara Angeles covers ten technology tasks that are often better off being managed by an outside provider. These include:
The last two items may seem a bit ambiguous and subjective. Many IT tasks require a certain amount of specialized training and knowledge to accomplish efficiently. In the article, Dmitry Yakovlev, software architect at DataArt, a custom software development firm, explains that if a small business has a task that requires skills and time not contained in-house, it’s time to outsource.
“Development projects which are out of the team core expertise are good candidates to be passed to vendors,” Yakovlev noted. However, business owners must have a clear vision of what they want, and the project should have “an accountable stakeholder in-house, well-defined scope and clear acceptance criteria,” Yakovlev advises.
Other tasks may not necessarily be outside the realm of expertise your company has in-house, but they are merely time-consuming and tedious. While these tasks sometimes can be automated, that is not always a possibility. If there isn’t a piece of software or script that can automate a task, “then it is safe to say that it needs to be delegated,” states Terra Andersen, CEO and founder of online development and marketing consultancy TCA Media. Again, be clear with instructions and vision.
“What most outsourcing experts often fail to disclose is that up-front training of these outsourced workers will require care and effort,” Andersen is quoted as saying. “Instead of an overall view of what you need to be done, you must break it down into a very detailed step-by-step training. This will require you to know exactly what you will have your outsourced help working on. Nothing should be vague.”
Choosing who you would like to oversee such a critical aspect of business operations can pose a challenge. Not all IT companies in Metairie and the surrounding area are the same. Most importantly, an IT consultant or service provider should be trustworthy and reliable. As stated above, IT permeates nearly every aspect of business operation, making it critical in several ways. You need to work with a company that will be careful and meticulous, keeping your systems and information secure. Accessibility is also important. Most small companies are not running within restricted business hours. There are tasks to be done nearly round-the-clock, which means your technology needs to be in working order. When outsourcing, find a company that will respond quickly and efficiently to fix a problem if it arises.
While you may not want to spend resources retaining a dedicated internal IT staff, that doesn’t mean you don’t need to have your support nearby. If you are looking for an IT consultant or service provider, choose a trustworthy, reliable firm in the Metairie area. Doing so helps with accessibility—often an issue when outsourcing to a different state or country. There is no time difference or unmanageable travel distance, should a serious problem arise. You also can be assured their security standards are up to snuff, which is important since they are handling sensitive data and critical systems.
If your criteria for a quality IT consultant are trustworthy, dependable, and skilled, the best place to turn is BIOS Technologies, an IT company in Metairie that provides comprehensive managed services to area businesses. They offer day-to-day management for maximum uptime, as well as expert consultation for strategic IT planning so you can focus on other business goals and tasks. For more information about our managed services, contact BIOS Technologies today at (504) 849-0570 or firstname.lastname@example.org.