Rising costs and operational inefficiencies are the biggest hurdles to a better business. For small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), information technology (IT) in particular can be frustrating because of lack of access to adequate funds, resources, or expertise. These problems lead to missed opportunities, overspending, and just bad business decisions.
Partnering with a managed services provider (MSP) can take the frustration out of IT and turn it into a competitive advantage with two distinct IT solutions: IT support and IT consulting. Although they are different services, there are also overlapping features. Take a look at three benefits that IT support services bring to an SMB, followed by three benefits from IT consultancy services.
Benefits of IT support services
More time for core business tasks
IT support services create cost savings and increased attention to one's core business in a number of ways. Tech support is offered as a subscription service from an outsourced provider, which eliminates any need for expenditure for in-house hardware, IT staff, and maintenance. It also protects an SMB from the risk of spending on resources that may turn out to be underused, since most modern IT services are delivered via the cloud with a pay-for-what-you-use pricing model.
SMBs can free up space and save on overhead costs by replacing in-house servers and other hardware with IT support services that integrate cloud solutions. They can do the same by replacing the salaries of an in-house IT department with subscriptions fees that grant access to 24/7 expertise and knowledge of IT specialists.
Outsourcing IT support frees up resources that allow you to focus on core business processes and on key projects to expand products and services. Human resources and funds can be re-allocated towards expanding the business, rather than dealing with IT headaches and non-essentials. For instance, in-house IT staff can focus on developing applications that boost business rather than on troubleshooting computer problems.
Access to expertise
MSPs give their clients unprecedented access to a wealth of expertise, often equivalent to that of tech giants, but at an affordable price scheme.
SMBs can access solutions that make them more resilient in a highly competitive market, solutions like advanced cybersecurity. This is one of the best services MSPs offer because it includes defensive measures that protect clients from data breaches and risky employee behavior that make SMBs vulnerable to cyber crimes.
Furthermore, security and data management expertise make it easy to transition to the cloud, which opens up even more operational efficiencies and cost savings, such as a more collaborative and productive remote working environment.
Depending on the type of business you do, the most valuable IT support services are the ones specific to regulated industries, such as healthcare or accounting and finance. These solutions are built on facilities that SMBs normally cannot afford to own, and maintained by technicians with a wide variety of specializations.
Having this diverse set of specialists in IT eliminates technology guesswork. An SMB can examine and pursue initiatives that leverage the latest technology, such as machine learning and AI, to gain a competitive advantage.
Partnering with an MSP streamlines technology maintenance and the troubleshooting process, guaranteeing minimal downtime and increase productivity.
You can expect faster resolution time of issues, as well as on-demand solutions to technology problems. IT support services offer round-the-clock remote access and maintenance of assets such as applications, servers, and platforms. This spares office workers the headache of having to wait for issues to be resolved or to even troubleshoot issues themselves, since systems can be updated and fixed remotely without interrupting workflows.
Benefits of IT consulting
IT consultancy services bring a level of proficiency that allows you to keep up with technology trends that increase your bottom line, such as digital marketing and AI. An outsourced IT consultant will identify your unique needs and short- and long-term technology roadmaps to help you meet those needs.
Oftentimes, an MSP already has access to game-changing solutions, such as machine learning and cloud services, and you simply need to sign up for them.
Maximize existing infrastructure
Most of the time, technology is like an alien language to the average business owner, and in-house IT staff such as programmers don't see the big business picture. IT consultancy services give helpful recommendations to enhance existing hardware and software that cost almost nothing.
Since IT consultancy services take a holistic view of your business technology, they can eliminate wasteful and inefficient systems and make technology recommendations to expand the business. For instance, these services can improve productivity by training your workforce to maximize the use of the company's collaboration, communication, and knowledge sharing platforms.
Identify performance bottlenecks
If IT-related functions are slowing you down, IT consulting is the fastest way to analyze, diagnose, and eliminate performance bottlenecks. This solution also helps with cybersecurity vulnerabilities and threats to the business.
If you don’t need them every month, IT consultancy services are also available for one-time projects to accelerate project completion or overcome hurdles.
Through an MSP, you free up overburdened IT resources and focus on achieving business objectives, while saving on costs. You can maximize the skills of your own IT staff while tapping into the skills of an MSP's own team. Learn about what Netquest’s solutions can do for your SMB. Contact us here today.
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