An ounce of prevention…
Your IT needs are driving you nuts. You aren’t sure when - or who - to call for help, what to update, what not to update. Hey… is this a virus, trojan, worm, ? How dangerous is it? What do I do about it? My email or backups or maybe even your server isn’t working.
If you run a business, you know the dilemma. Staffing an IT department often isn’t cost effective. But then, neither is having your executive assistant act as your IT staff. Every minute a member of your staff is doing IT work is time that they aren’t helping the company in your core business.
Which brings us to the proverb referenced in the title of this blog entry, ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’. That, in a nutshell, is the essence of managed services.
Properly done, a good managed services provider will make your IT support almost invisible. They do it by providing proactive support to prevent issues from appearing in the first place. It might include virus protection, email spam protection, email services, software updates, security updates, backups, file sharing. On the rare occasions when you need something special, a good provider will have a ticketing system in place that will reach a member of their team immediately and deal with whatever issue you are having quickly and efficiently.
One of the wonderful things about technology today is that no longer is it required that a tech be on site for every little issue. In today’s world, remote tools are very effective. Now, it’s possible for a support person to be actively engaged with the problem computer in under a minute. In most companies that’s faster than an IT staffer could walk to the problem.
But the real beauty of all this is that almost all of this is done after hours and done remotely. No longer will your workday be interrupted by someone coming around to update a piece of software. You won’t be faced with mountains of spam mail, your backups are always done (and done offsite for maximum protection), not to mention all of the other services usually provided in the managed services package.
A good provider will put together a package that consists of a core suite of tools and tasks that will take care of all of the basic IT needs. And a really good provider will be able to find, implement, and maintain solutions specific to the way you run your business. Email, onsite and cloud backups and storage solutions, constant monitoring of your environment and general support. It all comes in one package, at one price, which makes budgeting for your IT needs incredibly easy.
At the end of the year, you may find that the amount of dollars that you spend on managed services is a bit less than you would have paid someone to come in on a case by case basis. But what you really need to consider is, how much did it set your company back to have that employee or that server or your mail services down until someone could get there to fix it? Once you add that to the case by case fees, the managed services are a real bargain.