However, deciding to outsource your IT services can be a significant decision that requires some forethought. Fortunately, we have created a complete guide to help you understand such services and whether you need them for your business.
Outsourced IT Services: Explained
Outsourcing is the process of hiring third parties to handle certain aspects of your business. When you outsource IT services, you hire a third-party IT service to handle this aspect of your business. Many businesses opt for such services to help them build digital solutions and products as they work on reducing their costs.
It is crucial to identify the purpose for which you would need to outsource IT services, and then you can work on finding a company that fits your needs. Keep reading to make an informed decision regarding such services.
Why Your Business Needs Outsourced IT Services
As a business, you probably already have an IT department, or you don’t have one at all, and your business is running just fine. However, it is important to look at the reasons to know how you can improve your IT infrastructure. Here are all the reasons your business can opt for outsourced IT services:
Professional IT companies have the relevant expertise to take your business to another level. They will have answers to all your questions and provide solutions whenever you need them. There is a professional for every IT requirement, which means you will have access to professionals for all your project requirements at each stage.
You can also opt for professionals for a certain project and let go of them when it is complete. Such ease and access to professionals will completely transform your IT infrastructure and help you make the most of it. Hiring so many professionals for your company can significantly increase your costs, so outsourcing is a better option.
Decrease In Security Risks
There are security regulations in every region that you need to follow as a business. IT providers are familiar with these regulations and follow them to guarantee that you won’t face any financial or other risks. These regulations are also in place to help businesses follow the best practices and minimize their risks.
You will not have to worry about the risks associated with sensitive information and data important to your business. If you want to decrease your security risks and vulnerabilities, we recommend opting for outsourced IT services. Everything from your business’s sensitive information to your data will be safe from cyberattacks and other security issues.
Managed service providers keep up with the latest technologies and tools to ensure your IT services also stay up to date. In the long run, this will help you save time and money. As technology keeps on improving, new IT solutions keep on coming.
An IT company will consult with your business to implement the latest practices your business can benefit from. It will enhance efficiency, ensure security, and guarantee that there aren’t many redundancies within your IT infrastructure. Implementing new solutions to your business means optimizing efficiency and productivity.
Decreased Cost Of Operations
You might think that hiring an additional service will keep your costs high, but that is not true at all. You might have to pay them a certain amount, but in the long run, they will have a high return on investment. According to a report by Deloitte, around 62% of organizations turn to a company providing IT services to reduce their costs.
You can always opt for outsourced IT services if you also want to decrease your IT-related costs. Here are some other ways in which your costs will be cut down because of it:
- Lower tax rates: If you opt for an outsourced IT service provider in another region, your costs might be lower because of favorable tax systems in those regions
- Lower hourly rates: Running a business is already expensive. When you outsource IT services, you can lower your costs by 70% because you will not have to incur significant costs such as labor
- Pay for the job: You pay for the services based on the job they do rather than paying them as full-time employees
If you want to benefit from a reduction in costs, consider outsourcing your IT services.
Stay Ahead Of The Competition
IT services are not just for big businesses. Even small businesses can benefit from outsourcing their IT services. Anyone that wants to stay ahead of the competition can maintain a competitive edge by outsourcing IT services and support.
Your competitors probably have such services that they benefit from, and so can you. Conduct extensive research, and find the best company that will provide you with excellent IT services. You will see your business transform within no time.
IT Support At All Times
IT service providers offer their services 24/7. Their reliable technicians are always available, and you can contact them for support in case of any issues. They also monitor your IT infrastructure to ensure that your business doesn’t face any downtime.
You can contact their representatives if your servers crash or your website faces any issues. They will resolve the issue for you as soon as possible so you don’t face any financial or other losses. Speedy recovery and rectification of issues will help your business perform well at all times.
Better Employee Performance
You might think outsourcing IT services and infrastructure cannot be related, but let us tell you how. When you outsource IT support, your employees will have to spend less time dealing with IT issues that they are not familiar with. Such professionals will also be on the lookout for any issues and prevent them from worsening.
IT professionals will also resolve such issues quickly. Because of this, your employees will remain productive and have better performance. If you want to optimize workflows and ensure they remain uninterrupted, then you can outsource such services to a third party.
Risks And Challenges Of Outsourced IT Services And How To Overcome Them
Outsourcing IT services also comes with certain risks and challenges you can overcome. It is crucial to understand these challenges so you can also know what to do about them. Here are some of the top risks and challenges and how you can overcome them to benefit from IT services:
Different Time Zones
An important note to keep in mind is that your IT provider might not be in the same region as you. It is easy to work with providers in different time zones, but it can also be a challenge. Some time zones can have wide differences, which can hinder communication.
For example, if you live in Asia but you opt for an IT provider in Canada, you will have to deal with a difference of twelve hours or more. There are a few ways you resolve these issues, which include the following:
- Selecting an IT provider in the same time zone as you
- Ensuring good communication through tools and technology throughout the project
- Maintain inclusiveness to ensure efficiency and productivity
- Create teams and delegate work
These solutions will help you work with an IT provider in a different time zone. Your communication will remain strong, and productivity will be the norm.
Quality Of Services
When you opt for outsourced services, you might know the quality of services you will receive. You might get poor quality standards that can hinder your workflow even further. People make the mistake of looking for the cheapest option rather than going for a quality service provider.
You can avoid these issues by resorting to the following solutions:
- Ask companies to provide examples of previous work
- Ensure they use the latest practices
- Set clear expectations of what you are looking for
- Inspect the work and team from time to time
Following these practices will allow you to select the right IT provider to meet your project expectations and timelines. Then, you can benefit from their services for a long time without compromising quality.
Delays Because Of Lack Of Resources
Sometimes, providers can lack resources which can hinder the implementation of your project. There is nothing you can do about it, as the provider has to handle this on their end. The key to resolving this issue is to select a trusted and reliable partner that doesn’t create such issues for your business.
We recommend that you read reviews or ask people who have already opted for such a service. You can decide whether to opt for their services when you have their recommendations. A trusted IT provider might come at a higher cost, but you will easily rely on them without compromising your business.
Security And IP
Security is always a risk, especially when you outsource certain elements of your business. It is crucial to take the right steps to avoid issues with data security violations and breaches. You are at risk of violations whenever you share sensitive information or data with anyone.
Regular risk assessment and ensuring data security when selecting a provider will allow you to avoid such problems. Here are some practices and guidelines you can follow to reduce the risks of security and IP:
- Enter into a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) with the IT provider
- Conduct extensive due diligence before you enter into an agreement with your IT vendors
- Make sure that your provider follows local IP laws related to your business and region
You can easily overcome the risk of security and IP by following these tips. Even then, you must follow the guidelines and best practices in your region that are related to data and security laws.
Outsourced IT services mean you are dealing with a remote team that you are not in direct communication with. Communication can be one of the biggest challenges that can make or break the way your business works. You also have to create a dynamic in these circumstances that fosters growth and development.
For example, your requests or project timelines might be unreasonable, but a provider might agree to it as they might feel compelled over the phone. Ultimately, you will not see results, and you will only be disappointed with their service.
Here are some practices to help you avoid communication issues:
- Ensure that the service provider has a good command of the English language
- Team leaders should be skilled in facilitating meetings for better communication
- Use video calls as often as possible to avoid miscommunication and have more cues than just verbal
- Set a certain day and time for weekly meetings to report on progress
Good communication will guarantee better collaboration, and you will not face miscommunication issues.
Dropping Out Of Projects
Sometimes, key people in a certain project can drop out, and it can be challenging for the provider to replace them in due time. Because of this, there can be delays in your project because of skilled manpower. It is up to the service provider to make sure that these issues don’t take place when a project is ongoing.
Many providers face legal repercussions when they can’t meet the client’s deadlines and other deliverables. Here are some ways to avoid these challenges:
- Select providers with a good track record of catering to companies
- Pay the provider depending on the industry norm
- Conduct a detailed background check to ensure they have the necessary skills to deliver your project
- Hire a project manager to oversee the efforts of the IT service provider
You can always prevent the risks and challenges of outsourcing IT services. Follow the right guidelines to ensure that these problems don’t arise.
When Should Your Business Opt For Outsourced IT Services?
It is always good to look for warning signs and determine when you must opt for outsourced IT services. Preventive action is better than delaying work and figuring out what you need later. We have created a list of top signs that indicate your business needs to outsource IT services as soon as possible:
Not Having Enough In-House Resources
Not every business has the capacity to deal with in-house IT services. Your employees might be overextending themselves by doing IT work they have limited knowledge of. This will lead to them burning out, and it also means your IT infrastructure will be getting compromised.
You can give your employees important tasks that help you further your business goals. They can focus on their daily tasks while you outsource these services to professionals. If your in-house resources already have maximum work, then it is time for you to outsource IT services to ensure productivity and efficiency.
Over 2,000 cyberattacks happen daily, meaning more than 800,000 attacks yearly. Businesses remain vulnerable to these attacks, and they can lead to millions of dollars in financial losses, data compromise, and other issues. In-house IT teams don’t have extensive knowledge to provide you with exceptional cybersecurity solutions.
If your business is handling a lot of data and sensitive information, it is crucial to outsource to professionals that have the resources to secure your business. Their IT department can help minimize security risks, prevent attacks, and guarantee that your business stays safe for a long time.
Need Help With Complex Projects
As your business scales, you will be handling complex projects that require more labor, technology, and other such tools. Outsourced IT service providers will have the relevant technical skills and knowledge to handle any complex project you throw their way. Their expertise will keep the project moving and ensure it is done on time.
The right expertise and skills for a project can limit downtime and maximize the efficiency of your team. If you are tackling a big project and you don’t know what to do, we recommend that you outsource IT efforts. It will help you put more time and energy into your business as professionals handle the project.
Becoming cost-efficient means you have to reduce your costs and anything that is redundant within your business. For example, setting up an in-house IT staff means you spend thousands of dollars on training, equipment, hiring, and more. On the other hand, when you outsource these efforts, you don’t have to spend so much money on running an IT department.
Third-party service providers already have the teams, technology, and tools to ensure high-quality services for your business, regardless of the size and scope. You will only have to pay their fee, which will be much lower than running an entire department.
So, if you want to optimize your business by reducing costs, outsourcing your IT services is the best way to do it. You can let a professional company focus on these efforts as you sit back and relax.
Choosing The Right Outsourced IT Services Provider
It all comes down to choosing the right outsourced IT services provider to maximize the benefits you reap from their business. Some of the top factors to consider before you select the right IT service provider include the following:
Experienced IT providers have the right skills and knowledge to understand your infrastructure and provide long-term solutions that benefit your business. It is vital to check a provider’s experience before selecting them for your company. More experience means that they know how to deal with various issues that can hinder your business from progressing.
They will also have a long list of companies they would have worked with. You can ask them to show such experience to help you make an informed decision. However, there are also other factors to keep in mind than just the experience of a business.
Going for the cheapest option is tempting, but that doesn’t equate to quality. A good IT service provider will have fair pricing in line with other providers in the market. Their service offerings will also justify the price they have set for their services.
Go through each of the providers in your list, and compare their services and pricing. It will help you get a better idea of what you can expect and whether it is justifiable. Then, you can select a provider that meets your budget.
Aligning With Business Values
You must check whether the IT service provider aligns with your business values. When you are on the same page, you will know which direction to take on certain IT projects. Aligning core values also means that communication and collaboration will become much easier.
Research various IT providers and select one that understands and aligns with your business values. Then, together, you can transform the IT infrastructure of your business without much hassle.
Maintenance And Support
IT providers need to offer ongoing support to companies so that they can conduct work without any glitches or issues. Select a company that offers support 24/7 to help you reach out whenever possible. They should also offer maintenance to ensure your IT infrastructure has the support it needs.
Without customer support, your employees will not know what to do when there are any IT glitches within your company. So, make sure you conduct research and find a company that can offer the right maintenance and support to your business.
That was a complete guide to outsourced IT services you can follow in 2023 to select the right provider for your company. Q4 Gems is one of the top managed service providers that has the manpower, tools, and technology to handle your IT infrastructure. We offer a wide range of services that enhance collaboration, communication, and more.
For more information on the services we offer, you can book a consultation with our IT providers whenever you want. We will be more than happy to help you out in no time.