Information technology (IT) is the backbone of any successful business strategy. However, many companies struggle in today’s technology-driven landscape to make smart IT decisions that can advance their business goals, as opposed to maintaining the status quo.
More than 3% of a company’s revenue is typically spent on IT improvements, upgrades and proactive measures, according to The Wall Street Journal. Business leaders want a cost-effective IT environment that isn’t saddled with knowledge gaps or lack of resources, but it can be difficult and expensive to find and retain the right IT staff.
And, that’s where co-managed IT solutions come in.
Co-managed IT solutions supplement the internal IT staff that a business has in place. Whether the business needs to outsource lower level maintenance work or needs help with high-level strategic or engineering tasks, co-managed IT services can be a very cost-effective solution. It frees up the internal team to focus on what they do best and hands off the tasks that they either don’t have the time or talent to conquer.
Let’s break down the landscape of the co-managed model.
Benefits of Co-managed IT
Co-managed IT is the best of both worlds for the savvy business leader. You can partner with an IT managed service provider (MSP) who will work in tandem with your existing, in-house team of IT professionals. This creates a scalable solution that can be continuously modernized and upgraded without upsetting the current framework.
Here are just a few examples of IT functions that are often outsourced to an MSP:
- 24/7 Help Desk. Many businesses either can’t afford to, or don’t want to, manage an internal help desk team that is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week throughout the year. Outsourcing some or all of the help desk function can alleviate the pressure on the internal team who now find themselves having to support employee requests around the clock.
- Software updates and patches. This is another routine task that often gets overlooked by an overworked IT staff, sometimes to disastrous results. Many a company has been hacked simply due to out of date software. Partnering with an MSP who can automate this function is well worth the cost.
- Cybersecurity services. This is a huge challenge for every single business, and often existing staff simply don’t have the time or expertise to stay on top of what’s needed in today’s era of rampant cyber-crime. Managed cyber security services can offer the latest in security solutions, offering customized packages that suit the needs and budget of the business.
Does My Business Need Co-managed IT?
If your business is suffering from backlog of projects that never seem to get completed due to a shortage of IT resources, the short answer is yes. Here’s a short list of common challenges:
- Your employees may be complaining about response time, which hinders their productivity
- Your managers may be suffering from outdated software applications that are bogging down their workflows
- Remote workers may lack easy yet secure access to people and data
- Do you have a BYOD policy for all those mobile devices that are in the backpacks and purses of all your employees?
- Have you offered training on phishing prevention and other security awareness?
The list goes on, but one of the biggest concerns for any business is their cybersecurity position. Are your C-levels confident that enough is being done not only to proactively protect the business, but to allow for a speedy recovery should the worst occur? Do you have a documented business continuity plan in place? If nothing else, this is definitely an area that you may need outside help with.
The Bottom Line
When technology is integral to your everyday business, it’s imperative to have a quality IT team that not only knows how to keep things up and running but who also have the time and expertise to protect and enhance your business technology.
If you feel your staff is getting overwhelmed and are concerned you’re lagging when it comes to competitive technology, it might be time to take a closer look at how co-managed IT can help.