Pros and Cons of Outsourcing IT

Why an external IT party is good and bad for your tech needs

 

Why do businesses choose to outsource their IT?

Organisations often choose to outsource their information technology (IT) systems and services for a variety of reasons. These include:

  • Reducing and controlling operating costs
  • Improving company focus
  • Gaining access to world-class capabilities
  • Freeing internal resources for other purposes
  • Streamlining or increasing efficiency for time-consuming functions
  • Sharing risks with a partner company

These reasons are valid but you need to keep in mind the good and the bad when it comes to the inclusion of a third party.

 

Advantages of outsourcing

For starters, IT is a complex field. It’s a large undertaking if you’re a large company with a small IT department or a small business owner with no IT knowledge. If you think you can’t handle these responsibilities, here is a list of how you can benefit by outsourcing your IT needs to an experienced service provider:

 

  • Focus on your priorities

If you’re an accountant you need to focus on your business’s financial requirements. Outsourcing your IT requirements will allow you to focus on your core job, while the specialists manage your IT and business operations. When you leave IT management to the experts, you are ensured that your  IT will be run efficiently, leaving you to run your business or to focus on your core competencies.

 

  • Save money

When you outsource your IT functions, you can rest assured that the expenditures will not fluctuate. Instead, you can budget for a monthly fee for your expert services. Additionally, MSPs offer cloud-hosted services where you can rent hardware such as servers. These are located offsite and monitored on a continued basis, which substantially lowers your total IT investment.

 

  • Constant monitoring of your equipment

Even if you do have qualified, in-house IT professionals, it’s unreasonable to have them monitor your IT environment. Service providers often provide a 24-hour service, allowing them to deploy the necessary tools and take care of any serious issues.

They will also advise you on the necessary future upgrades to avoid any downtime in the future. IT service providers can also take care of day-to-day tasks such as software updates and patches, anti-virus updates, data backups, and inventory auditing and control.

 

  • Minimise risk

The job of the service provider is to ensure that your IT environment is up-to-date and running smoothly. They’ll make sure that backups are working, pushing out patches and auditing inventory to minimise any risks.

Overall, your organisation will experience increased benefits and enjoy a stable IT environment, without the worry of outdated CRMs or viruses sneaking in.

 

Considerations of outsourcing

Picture this: you’re an online retailer and there’s a bug in the system. Your online store is down and you have irate customers breathing down your neck waiting for answers. You don’t have an in-house IT expert to pinpoint the issue and you’re struggling to contact your IT service provider.

While outsourcing your IT has its benefits, there are also things you need to consider, such has:

 

  • Exposure to confidential information

Outsourcing gives a third party complete access to your company information. This is dangerous as it can increase the possibility of information theft. From company projections to confidential emails and sensitive client data; these are all at risk of being copied and perhaps sold.

 

  • Unexpected costs

You will sign a contract with the outsourcing company that will cover the details of the service that they provide. While you may pay a monthly fee, anything not covered in the contract could result in additional charges.

 

  • Loss of control

A third-party vendor may encourage you to purchase systems or products for which they have expertise. Soon enough, you’re so dependent on that vendor that extricating becomes risky.

If you’re considering outsourcing your IT, it would be wise to carefully research a service provider and read contracts carefully.

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