Managed IT services means effectively outsourcing your IT process to a third-party with more experience, hardware and manpower that can do the work more efficiently.
Around the world, companies big and small partner with third-parties called managed service providers or MSPs for short. These remote providers support a company’s growing IT needs, scaling the related systems up or down depending on operational requirements. The beauty of this — you don’t have to manage or invest in an internal IT team.
The managed services market will see growth to more than 190 billion by 2019 at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 12.5 percent. That’s not just promising, it’s insane, and it shows how quickly businesses catch on.
Popular or not, that doesn’t necessarily mean you should follow suit. How do you know whether or not you should outsource your IT?
Let’s weigh the pros and cons so you can make a decision.
Pros of Outsourcing
1. No Need to Hire More Workers
When you outsource, you pay anyone involved as a freelancer or contractor. This means you can avoid added costs of employee benefits and training. Furthermore, you only need to pay for the work invested by said contractors.
2. Larger Talent Availability
When hiring remote employees, you’re not confined to a single area or location. Instead, you can hire from a much larger talent pool, allowing you to find incredibly skilled contractors with experience and knowledge.
3. Manageable Labor Costs
Outsourcing offers a fine balance between the ballooning cost of quality for the price. In other words, conventionally you’d have to hire skilled talent and pay higher salaries and benefits. When contracting, however, you’re more likely to find good talent for more manageable costs, especially as a small business.
4. Improved Security
Unless your remote team works on a potato, outsourcing usually means you gain access to more capable hardware and systems. The remote teams are specialized in IT services and security, so they have equipment and hardware specifically for this purpose. They also have direct experience that an internal team may not have.
Cons of Outsourcing
1. You Sacrifice Control
You can provide direction to remote workers, but due to the nature of their setup you cannot retain complete control. In fact, there’s a certain manner of trust involved when outsourcing, so you’ll need to hire only parties and helpers that can operate independently.
2. Communication Is Tough
Varying time zones, distance and technology limitations can cause communication errors or stagnate a relationship altogether. You’ll absolutely need to make sure remote workers can maintain an active and reliable internet connection. Barring that, you’ll need to work out the systems, platforms and tools you favor for collaboration. Remember, it will never match the communication of working on-site, face-to-face.
3. Lack of Quality Guarantees
As you know, even the most seasoned and experienced workers can deliver sub-par quality from time-to-time. This is a lot less manageable with a remote workforce because they often take on the brunt of time management themselves. One way to combat this is to check-in regularly and keep communication channels open, but it’s never a guarantee you’ll get the quality you expect.
4. Negative Company Culture
Maintaining the satisfaction of internal employees is necessary to keep a healthy, reliable workforce in operation. Outsourcing work may give your existing workforce the wrong impression. They could feel replaced, confused or even challenged. It’s important you incorporate outsourcing systems in a way they don’t interfere with your internal teams.
What’s Your Move?
So there you have it, some of the most pertinent pros and cons of outsourcing your IT services! Your next move is deciding where to go from here. 2018 promises a good year, with many new technologies and opportunities presented to everyone, especially in the IT and networking industries.
Do you want to cash in on the current trends and outsource your work, or do you want to keep it local?
Author: Nathan Sykes is a business and tech enthusiast and writer from Pittsburgh, PA. You can find more posts from him on Finding an Outlet.