Small or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) often do not have the resources available to enjoy the luxury of having a robust IT department or employees at their disposal. Most SMEs rarely have a contracted person to turn to when their IT challenges come calling.
It’s not uncommon for businesses with a growing balance sheet to only hire IT personnel when they are in a crisis. One employee will handle all the IT assets, vendor relationships, telecommunications contracts, equipment, and software needs.
It’s not surprising when you take into account the data showing that the average salary for an IT professional in Australia is $105,037. Beyond that, Harvey Nash and KPMG CIO survey shows that even if the employer had the money to spend, there is a shortage of tech skills. According to the survey, a high 67% of firms have a hard time recruiting analytics, big data, AI, and cybersecurity talent.
Consequently, over 37% of SMEs will outsource one or more of their business processes, an activity that shows no signs of slowing with the global IT infrastructure management outsourcing market set to expand by $98 billion by 2024.
The benefits of outsourcing IT infrastructure management for SMEs
1) Increasing productivity
The IT infrastructure for your business is the combined suite of network resources, software, and hardware required to keep it fully functional.
The right IT system will ensure business productivity in today’s fast-paced information technology environment. Your IT framework is the business’s backbone, connecting your value offering to your customers, employees, and stakeholders.
SMEs that lack a robust IT department, cloud, or physical collocation IT management services will suffer from unproductivity. They will often have:
- A busy staff that does not have time to deal with your business’s day-to-day IT operations
- Nonexistent or poorly managed documentation and business data
- Recurring server and network performance challenges
- Untested and unreliable disaster recovery and backup systems
- A virtual machine, test, and development bloat
- Poor infrastructure planning leading to a continuing catch-up mode rather than proactive planning
As a business owner, you will strive to ensure that their employees and clients can achieve maximum productivity for business growth but without a well-managed IT system, you could be hindering the realisation of your business potential. Therefore, it makes more sense to outsource your IT system’s management needs if you do not have the budget for an all-sufficient, internal IT department.
High-quality collocation or cloud IT systems management services will enhance cost-saving, quality and risk control, and process maturity. They will also increase staffing and capacity management. More benefits include access to expertise and knowledge resources for your startup.
2) Unshackling your management personnel
Most SMEs often have limited full time IT specialists in their employment. Unfortunately, one employee can only do so much in a day. They will often have to choose the most urgent of business IT processes to focus on.
Therefore, your IT department will be in a permanent reactive state that keeps your lone employee in permanent crisis mode. For this reason, 75% of SMEs struggle to recruit and retain IT staff with employees preferring large companies instead. Here, they will enjoy better pay, work-life balance, more development, and training opportunities.
Your IT department’s perpetual state of crisis has the potential to bring down the whole business’s productivity and frustrate your stakeholders. These crises can escalate to significant levels should your IT support staff fall ill, go on leave, or find alternative employment. Fortunately, you can float your IT needs over the cloud and use private, public of hybrid technology for IT support.
Along with that, you can outsource your on-site hardware management needs to a firm whose core prerogative is reliable IT services management. Consequently, you will not have an internal staff member that is overwhelmed with work. In the end, your management personnel will spend less time putting out fires. They will have more time to focus on core business needs.
3) Access to novel technologies
If your business is on a shoestring budget, you will have a harder time updating your IT infrastructure. Unfortunately, over 34% of SME business leaders say that they will go out of business if they do not embrace the oncoming digital disruption. SMEs are highly susceptible to business failure should they fail to sufficiently adapt to novel IT regulatory requirements, innovations, and economic changes.
Your business’s ability to embrace digital disruption can be a differentiator. Most SMEs tend to focus on operational growth and an increase in profit, but innovative IT solutions can help your business in building better customer relationships and enhancing efficiency.
Disruptive IT products can also empower creative thinking amongst your employees. To embrace a digital-first outlook, keep your SME as agile as its enterprise brethren and use vendor services for expert advice and products.
4) Reduced risks
Over and above leapfrogging your small or medium business to the future, an IT infrastructure management business can also reduce your risk exposure. Market competition, regulations, and financial circumstances are a continually evolving glass door.
They will place business investment at risk. Outsourcing your IT technology needs will manage this risk on your behalf. The service provider will ensure that you are safe from compliance, security, and outdated systems risk.
5) Decreased costs
The training, updating of skills, top of the range benefits, and salaries of IT specialists can be costly for an SME. The processing of vetting and hiring the best talent is also time-consuming. If you outsource your IT management needs, your business can be more productive, competitive, and secure.
It will also be more human resource cost-efficient. The cost and responsibility of hiring and managing the best IT personnel will be upon your preferred IT infrastructure management vendor.
Small and medium-sized firms might have shoestring budgets, but they are as reliant on technology as their larger counterparts. Their skills, staffing, and budgetary constraints, however, put them at a disadvantage in IT. Outsourced IT infrastructure management services will level the playing field for your business. They will keep you competitive, secure, save costs, and make your processes more efficient.