“If you deprive yourself of outsourcing and your competitors do not, you’re putting yourself out of business.”
Lee Kuan Yew, Former Prime Minister of Singapore
As a business owner you are aware how important it is to delegate daily business operations to experts you trust, so that you can focus on business development. Managed services (MS) provide the opportunity to do just so. Companies that offer these types of services are called managed service providers (MSPs) and as a form of outsourcing they usually charge their clients fixed monthly or yearly fees. One of the most popular MS is G Suite and its premium features like cloud security from Google. It is a form of Software as a Service (SaaS) for which businesses pay monthly to use.
From my experience working in a bespoke software development company I learned the value of focused attention on core business operations. Just think about it, if you choose to do everything on your own from network security, cloud infrastructure to app hosting and system maintanence, would you have enough time to build a strong and competitive business? The main advantage of outsourcing is that it helps you master your strengths while you delegate your weaknesses. Now, let’s see exactly how managed services can benefit your business:
1. Remote IT Support and Management
A global pandemic was an unprecedented worst-case scenario for businesses around the world in 2020. With common efforts and governmental support the vast majority of IT companies succeeded in staying afloat even though they faced major challenges. Some of the most critical ones that kept making global headlines throughout last year were information security, remote working efficiency as well as digitisation of traditional businesses and skill gaps.
To fill in those talent shortages while coping with the remote working situation, many companies choose to outsource their IT support and management to MSPs. Especially small-to-mid size enterprises (SMEs) that don’t have in-house IT teams can benefit greatly from remote services. One of the crucial advantages of them are that many support providers offer 24/7 coverage to live up to every business needs. Even if there is a time-zone difference, your business will be in good hands with technical support in the background even during official closed business hours.
2. Cost Benefits from Managed Services
Managed IT services surely bring a lot of financial benefits both to your organization and to your clients. When you use MSP services you cut down costs by definition and that is not to say you compromise with quality. The reason why MSP can offer lower prices is that they specialize in certain services like building IT infrastructure, system monitoring, database management or cloud automation and those are tailored to your unique current business needs. As your company grows and expands, you can always upgrade your service plan and enjoy the benefits of premium packages. On top of that, it will allow you to better optimize and plan your budget as MS operates on predictable flatrates.
If you are SME and consider building an entire IT department from scratch, paying salaries and benefits, you will quickly realise that outsourcing is the more affordable and reliable option. Even if you do have an IT team to rely on, you can relieve them from fixing malfunctioning equipment and let them focus on their core responsibilities, which increases their productivity. Key financial benefits of managed services include reduced infrastructure expenses such as hardware costs and on-site maintenance and also reputation costs. Imagine that for some reason you lose client data due to network issues of accidental server downtime – a recipe for trust and financial issues.Those that say time is money aren’t actually that far from the truth because downtime can translate to direct financial loss.
3. Catalyse Digital Transformation
Another way managed services can be used as part of your success strategy is when it comes to digital transformation. Fact is that in the 21st century at least some type of each company’s business operations revolve around IT. Varying from industry to industry, the process of digital transformation differs immensely but its main goals are to transfer traditional business services into innovative technology-driven solutions with increased value for end-consumers. This inevitably leads to increased market relevance because of the high digital literacy of today’s society and preferred choices.
But some businesses still struggle to manage their digital transformation process and can benefit from external help to overcome their specific challenges. For instance, managed services often provide a full development of custom digital transformation strategy to guide companies on their way forward. To fully reposition your business to be suitable in the fast-growing digital economy, you need to be able to fulfill requirements such as implementation of new tech solutions, integration of cloud and communication infrastructure with service-based applications and so much more. With a reliable partner on your side that helps you simplify and automate current processes as well as alleviate security security concerns, you are on your way to be ahead of competition and scale your business.
4. Data Compliance
Regardless of the industry your business is positioned in,you most certainly operate with high volumes of data on a daily basis. Those datasets need to be managed according to security standards and data compliance regulations that are applicable to your region and business type. The biggest companies usually have an internal data management team to follow those complex legislation directives and ensure information regarding business transactions, client data storage and data ownership are kept and used in compliance to the strict security requirements.
Although for many SMEs it is inconvenient to organise a team of experts to manage these processes. A managed service provider can handle this matter for you, from daily reports to complex security standard audits – this is an invaluable time saver in the long run. Plus, companies look more credible for potential clients if an outside field expert certifies that it is working according to all necessary regulations.
5. Remote Expert Team as a Business Partner
It often happens that soon after you’ve signed a contract with your managed service provider you come to the conclusion that a valuable asset has been added to your team. As a business owner you inevitably had to (or may still have to) adapt your business processes during the lockdown restrictions. Some core questions you need to ask yourself are how fast and efficiently can your business respond to changes and to what extent can you manage to fully face those challenges standing your own? Not only can professional experience of MSPs be beneficial to your business success in the long run, such partnership can also be strategic for thinking out of the box and coming up with customized solutions that are there to suit your business needs.
For example if you struggle with some software application development you can either hope to get so good at it fast enough or simply reach out for help from qualified field experts, who can guarantee you’ll receive a high quality product without completely losing focus from your core business tasks. After all, the only formula to success is to combine experience with possibilities.
Biography Aleksandrina Vasileva
Aleksandrina is a Content Creator at Dreamix, a custom software development company, and is keen innovative technological solutions with a positive impact on our world. Her teaching background mixed with interests in psychology drives her to share knowledge. She is an avid reader and enthusiastic blogger, always looking for the next inspiration.