It’s common for Internal IT teams at small and medium businesses to constantly juggle between tasks. Whether it’s performing backups, resolving downtime, implementing cybersecurity practices, maintaining the company website, or upgrading/transitioning to new technology, there is always something to do. With so much on the list, your small team could find it challenging to meet the growing IT demands.
A lot of technology decisions require knowledge that only experienced IT professionals have. Advanced IT decisions like evaluating new cloud platforms, implementing anti-malware protocols, and employee training are some aspects where your IT team may lack the experience that is needed to get the best value. This is where managed services providers (MSP) can benefit your organization. An MSP can optimize your technology processes, develop IT roadmaps, and improve your cybersecurity practices.
Having said that, when to partner with an MSP? is a question that confuses many. In this article, we’ll discuss 4 signs that show your IT staff needs the help of an MSP.
Rapid Company Growth
After all the months of effort, your leads have started converting and finally sales are picking up. While this might be great news, it might also pose a challenge. The increased workload could overburden your existing IT team and make it difficult for them to manage everything. The network and hardware resources might also become slow and inefficient.
As sales grow, it becomes imperative to expand your IT infrastructure. In a technology-centric environment, an imbalance between supply and demand of IT resources could mean frequent downtimes, inefficient processes, and unexpected bottlenecks. This may end up resulting in poor customer service, and warrants immediate action.
You could hire another IT technician or…outsource to a local MSP with a co-managed option. MSPs have the resources and experience to manage your IT needs differently. They align your IT infrastructure with the growing demands of your business.
Misalignment Between IT and Management
Merely deploying new business apps will not achieve business goals. To get a positive return on investments, technology projects need to align with business goals, which involves identifying the obstacles, evaluating opportunities, and implementing effective solutions.
For example, a law firm might be serving clients from multiple countries and faces issues in generating invoices in different currencies. When selecting the CRM, the managing partners and IT need to ensure it can fix these invoicing challenges and then align on the following:
- Determine the metrics, baselines, and required outcomes to validate the results of the CRM
- Manage the adoption of the CRM across the entire legal team
- Collect and share KPI reports
Validate the Return
Businesses need quantifiable results to understand the impact IT initiatives have created. For small companies, this might be impossible to do by themselves, but hiring a managed IT provider can help. Managed IT providers can evaluate the hardware and software needs and the impact it is creating on business processes. This helps streamline management expectations and the impact of IT on business processes. Access to reliable metrics also enables management take better decisions in the future.
Lack of an IT Strategy
Business may face problems in streamlining their IT processes because they lack an IT roadmap. An IT roadmap provides a comprehensive plan that will increase the competitiveness of your firm. Projects can be related to business applications, cloud services, disaster recovery, cybersecurity, and more. Having a long-term plan provides clarity to management on future IT projects and spending of the organization. However, creating the roadmap requires the input of experienced and knowledgeable IT professionals.
Insufficient Cybersecurity Measures
Limited IT staff and experience may make it difficult for your small IT team to perform all the best practices in cybersecurity activities. They might find tasks too time consuming and overwhelming, or they may have less exposure to potential gaps that can be exploited.
The rising of ransomware attacks has shown why companies need to have a proactive approach when it comes to cybersecurity. However, most IT Managers see cybersecurity as a one-time project per year. They purchase anti-virus software and hope they aren’t seriously targeted. This exposes the business to emerging threats that the software might fail to recognize, ultimately resulting in a breach.
Having a dedicated team, in the form of an IT service provider, can address the problem. Managed IT providers will take care of complete cybersecurity measures, performing all tasks like software patching, threat identification, periodic backups, and incident response. They have the experience and the tools to ensure your systems stay secure. Don’t forget! Managed IT providers can also work with you to conduct periodic training on cyber security for employees to keep them updated about emerging threats.