Benefits and risks of outsourcing your IT services

Benefits and risks of outsourcing your IT services

Rapid changes and the growing complexity of technology is making it harder for businesses to manage their IT infrastructure in-house. With a growing pressure to contain costs, it has become common for staff members to take on multiple roles, leaving little time to keep up with technology changes.

Outsourcing IT services to a managed service provider is an option many businesses are looking at to help them meet the challenge of maintaining a robust and safe IT infrastructure required to operate efficiently and grow their businesses.

Here are some benefits of outsourcing IT services:

Improving the Focus of the Organisation

A managed IT services provider can take on the responsibility of managing part of or the entire IT operations to help a business run efficiently. This may involve upgrading equipment, moving to cloud computing or redesigning workflows.

When businesses spend time and energy on complex IT decisions, their focus is drawn away from business goals. IT outsourcing allows businesses to focus on growth, while managed services providers provide the IT support needed to support growth targets.

Leverage Expertise and Experience

Obsolescence is a challenge businesses have to constantly grapple with when negotiating the IT infrastructure landscape.

Most in-house IT staff do not have the tools or the resources to provide a proactive approach to meeting challenges and are essentially firefighters. They go around fixing problems as they come up.

By outsourcing IT services, businesses leverage the knowledge and experience of experts accustomed to a variety of IT challenges every day. When they are faced with a problem, they are most likely to have faced it before and can fix it quickly and at a lower cost.

IT professionals working with managed services providers constantly undergo the latest training required to quickly resolve any challenges a business may encounter.

Improved Security

With cybercrime costing businesses millions of dollars in revenue and loss of reputation, security is one of the most important topics of discussion around IT systems.

Networks have vulnerabilities which must be protected against. IT outsourcing allows businesses to tap into the vast knowledge of experts who are trained in all aspects of online security. This enables them to provide security solutions tailored to a specific business. A managed services provider can help in keeping software up to date which is an important factor in cybersecurity.

Business Compliance

Data privacy and other compliance requirements are important considerations for businesses in all industries and any breach can cost a business its reputation and possible litigation.

Businesses in most industries have IT related compliance standards that have to be met. Without the right support, there is a likelihood of compliance breaches. IT outsourcing relieves businesses from the burden of compliance issues.

Managed service providers can help in implementing strategies for meeting compliance requirements in all industries.

Competitive Advantage

Small and medium sized businesses generally lack the resources enjoyed by larger companies.

IT outsourcing gives small businesses access to technology, expertise and support enjoyed by larger companies. This allows smaller businesses to be technologically on par with their larger competitors while providing personalised customer experiences expected by customers.

Risks of Outsourcing

While there are some risks of IT outsourcing, being aware of them and taking preventative steps can help a business easily avoid them.

Compromising Intellectual Property

Outsourcing IT services leads to databases and business processes being shared with third-party companies. Unscrupulous companies may intentionally use the data inappropriately, such as selling data to a competitor.

If remote workers do not have the right data protection software in place, their customer data can be easily stolen and sold to other companies before release.

To prevent this from happening businesses can include a non-disclosure clause in the contract and also ask for feedback from other customers.

Difficulty in Synchronising Time

Offshore IT services providers working in a different time zone may not be able to respond to requests in time.

Businesses relying on offshore IT services providers often find it difficult to get accustomed to different time zones and work style. A lack of synchronisation can lead to a waste of time and prove costly.

Outsourcing IT services to providers operating in the same time zone and making specific agreements about the hours of availability in the contract will help in creating a harmonious working relationship.

Unexpected Costs

While working with a trusted IT services provider can result in significant cost savings, sometimes a change in requirements may incur additional costs from the IT services provider as this would be beyond the scope of the initial agreement.

To overcome this risk, businesses should choose an experienced IT services provider and set clear parameters.

If you are looking to outsource your IT services, as one of Australia’s most reputed managed services providers, we have the knowledge, skills and expertise to support your needs. To explore whether we are the right IT partners for your business, call us on 1800 538 488 to discuss your requirements or or click here to contact us.