Generally, as businesses grow, so does the amount they depend on IT. It’s estimated that currently 95% of modern businesses could not function correctly without IT systems. The issue with this is that in order to meet those needs, you need to have more staff to work with – and the cost of hiring more people can begin to increase exponentially.
When costs rise, many businesses look for different, cheaper methods to meet their needs. One great alternative businesses have started to opt for, as opposed to hiring an in-house IT team, is outsourcing their IT needs to an MSP – a Managed Service Provider.
Don’t worry if you’re unfamiliar with Managed Service Providers – this article will give you a quick, easy to understand look at what MSPs are, and what benefits they can bring to a business!
An introduction to MSPs
Basically, an MSP is a pre-assembled IT team, composed of various talented and experienced individuals. They won’t be on your payroll, or work in your offices, but they can still take care of the IT needs that an in-house department would usually try to meet.
Usually, the way an MSP operates is that they will be supporting many different companies, in all kinds of industries, all at once. As you can imagine, this requires a dynamic, highly skilled team, which also means they have the skills necessary to quickly begin working with new businesses like your own. A lot of the time, businesses that choose to work with an MSP will have them ready to go within a couple of weeks from when they first made contact.
Due to their method of working, in which they support a lot of businesses at once, they can afford to keep their fees low – meaning you don’t have to shell out large sums of money for a team with such a high skill level, and they can also afford to pay their employees. In most cases, they will charge you a monthly fee, for which you’ll receive whatever IT support and maintenance you agree on.
So, MSPs sure sound like a decent choice. But what are the exact ways they can benefit a business? Let’s get into that right now!
Avoid spending money on recruitment
A recruitment drive is one of the things that can really add to the already astronomically high costs of running a business. Alarmingly, it can cost a business around £3000 to fill just one role in their IT department when all is considered, including all the fees, staffing, lost resources, and on-boarding. That’s without even considering the cost of training, and then actually paying them!
By choosing to work with an MSP, you can steer clear of all the costs that come with recruitment. Not to mention, many good MSPs will take care of all the work needed to assimilate into your business without charging you anything! Imagine what you could do with the thousands you could save if you hire an MSP instead of an in-house team – why not use it to grow your business in other ways by putting some extra money towards product development, or even marketing?
Use IT to encourage growth
As we mentioned, hiring an MSP is a great way to ensure you have some extra cash which can be put into other worthwhile methods of growing your business. However, don’t forget that working with an MSP can also encourage growth with IT itself.
You may be worried that if you hire an MSP, there’s a chance you’ll receive a team of people who aren’t fully invested in your business, and only work on basic tasks. This could happen – which is why it’s crucial to do research beforehand. The right MSP will have worked successfully with a plethora of companies, and will have helped all of them grow. Ensuring you work with an MSP like this means you’ll have access to a team of people with the most up to date knowledge of IT systems and technology – all of which is very helpful when it comes to growing your own business.
Have you considered implementing MPLS on your network? How about SD WAN instead? Oh, and have you thought about how a hosted telephone solution could benefit your business? There are so many options when it comes to IT systems that it can get a little overwhelming. You might not even fully understand what any of those things mean – but the right MSP will.
Not every MSP offers consultancy and advice as part of their basic deal, but many will for a little extra a month. Whatever the extra cost, having access to such a large amount of knowledge and expertise, and also getting help making decisions and setting up systems, may well prove to be priceless.
How to find an MSP that meshes with your business
If I were to ask you ‘what does a business need to grow’ no matter what your answer may be, at the end of the day, growth requires expertise, and also a fair amount of money. Hiring the right MSP should be a good way to ensure your business has both of these things in abundance, but I must emphasize, you need to find the right MSP. Research really can make the difference between hiring an MSP that can seriously boost your business, and hiring one which will make you regret ever deciding not to hire in-house.
Here are a couple of things you can inquire about to help you in your quest to find the best MSP for your business. Try to find out if your chosen MSP has previously worked with businesses like yours. Whether that’s similar in terms of industry, size, or aims for growth – successfully having supported a business like yours is a good sign.
Be sure to also ask them what their aims are when it comes to growth. It’s possible their goals might not align with your own, meaning they won’t be prepared to support you when you reach the stars – you want to find an MSP willing to put into the work to grow with you, supporting you well into the future. Any MSP that fits this criteria may well be a fantastic choice!