Do you find yourself worrying more about system downtime, data security and employee morale more than your overall business strategy? Are you spending an exorbitant about of money to keep your IT systems running smoothly?
The potential challenges that fall under IT support can be incredibly complex. So, having a team of in-house experts diverse enough to manage these challenges isn't a practical choice. This is why IT support is one of the most commonly outsourced business functions today.
According to one study from Computer Economics, IT and IT security are some of the fastest-growing areas for outsourcing - more companies are “choosing to tap into certain skills from outside organizations so they can focus on mission-critical skills in-house.”
Having the appropriate level of IT support for your business and knowing the right people are accountable for that support delivers peace of mind and the ability to focus your energies where they belong.
The Top 4 Mistakes Businesses Make with Their IT Support
By understanding and learning how to avoid these 4 mistakes, your organization can confidently make determinations about IT support levels.
1. They Think Short-Term
Just trying to “get the system up and running again” is a common and frustrating place to be. Downtime is expensive and discouraging for employees and in many cases, for customers or clients. It’s really just plain bad for business.
So, while it is understandable that minimizing downtime is job #1, the approach shouldn’t stop at simply getting past the problem. This kind of thinking is referred to as the "break/fix" approach or “reactive IT”. Reactive IT is a spiral that can be easy to get caught up in when you are busy with many things.
A more practiced and strategic approach will result in fewer problems and the expenses that come with them. Shifting to a longer-term and more strategic approach to IT delivers multiple benefits. A proactive IT support partner will be driven to find out why problems happen and implement strategies to create efficiencies and ensure problems don’t continue to happen.
It is important that companies considering their IT support options shift their mindset to a more proactive approach, as it ultimately results in controlled and more predictable costs and the elimination of costly downtime.
2. They Focus On Price
Knowing how much to budget for IT can be like taking a shot in the dark. When budget time comes around many businesses tend to increase by a percentage over previous years or guesstimate based on scheduled upgrades, etc.
Overspending without strategy is not the answer, but neither is trying to cut corners. Look at technology as an investment in your company and measure each expenditure based on the total cost and the return it provides.
With IT, it doesn’t have to be about the amount spent, but having the expertise to know where and how to spend it. A reliable third-party can help you assess the right direction for your infrastructure and its support. When IT spending decisions are made in alignment with overall business objectives, the ROI will show in streamlined operations, better decision making and more predictable IT costs.
3. They Don’t Know The Real Cost of Their IT
Knowing what your IT is truly costing can be a challenge. Suffice it to say, if your cost assessment focuses on equipment and IT support costs only, you are way off the mark.
Are you paying internal staff, a managed service company or a strategic IT partner?
Those costs can vary widely, but one of the most commonly missed expenses is the cost of downtime and lost productivity when systems are not functioning. Digging down into what your IT is really costing is the very best place to start if you want to get your budgets and objectives aligned. Check out The Real Cost of IT for a better understanding of all of the costs associated with keeping your systems operational.
4. They Don’t Align Technology With Business Strategy
Before any considerable decisions are made concerning your IT, you should have a solid appreciation for the absolute connection between what your technology means to your business operations. A healthy IT environment can make or break a business. The right technology can drive organizational change through increased productivity, decreased downtime, better financial planning, and improved morale.
A well-planned IT environment is a key ingredient to business success and the right level of IT support allows you to place your focus where it belongs. When you understand what you are truly spending on IT, view technology as an investment and work with a team that thinks proactively, you’ll be in a position to consistently innovate, operate with efficiency, surpass the competition and grow your business!