For mid-sized St. Louis businesses, implementing strategic IT solutions can be a challenging endeavor.
Most mid-sized firms have at least one or two internal IT employees. The problem is that these employees almost certainly feel that it’s enough to deal with IT issues on a day-to-day basis. Just putting out the fires that arise each week may feel like a win. (In the rare circumstance where there aren’t internal IT people, owners or employees are the ones juggling IT responsibilities, in which case they’re certainly only worried about catching what comes next.)
In these scenarios, the idea of proactive IT strategy is appealing in the same way that world peace is – great in theory, but a long way from being realistic. There’s good news, though. There is an updated model of service that drastically empowers IT resources and unlocks access to high-level, strategic IT consulting.
It’s called managed IT services. Here’s how it works – and how it finally unlocks proactive IT support for St. Louis businesses.
1. Fixed costs
Importantly, managed services are delivered at a fixed cost. Regardless of the IT issues over the course of a given month – support requests, on-site visits, server maintenance – costs remain consistent and predictable.
This is a major upgrade over the traditional break-fix model of IT service for a variety of reasons. First, break-fix motivates IT providers to spend more time fixing more issues, because that’s how the money is made. Conversely, managed IT services incentivize providers to reduce the number of issues in the first place.
Second, break-fix is unpredictable. It may cost next to nothing one month and be devastatingly expensive the next. That makes budgeting difficult. Managed IT services, on the other hand, make budgeting simple, allowing businesses to transition IT costs into operational expenses.
But while managed services are predictable, they’re not inflexible.
2. Scalable resources
In fact, managed IT services also introduce the possibility of scalable IT support.
An internal resource is obviously limited. Hiring a new IT employee is a slow and difficult process that still puts a cap on IT capability (it’s just increased by a headcount of one). Mid-sized companies seeking to grow will have a hard time scaling using this process. But the best managed service providers offer the benefits of an entire team of knowledgeable IT personnel, available as needed, and accessible without the difficulty of the hiring process.
As a business grows, or as complex IT considerations arise, it’s easy to level-up IT capability accordingly.
3. Access to experts
Scalability doesn’t just apply in terms of functional, time-based availability (going from 20 hours to 40 hours of support per week, for example). It also applies to the level of expertise that businesses have access to.
Put simply, the best managed IT services give businesses access to experts across areas of IT.
This is a huge advantage over strictly internal solutions because even the best IT people aren’t capable of acquiring expertise across every technological niche. An expert at managing server-side issues, for example, probably isn’t also an expert at dealing with Microsoft OS dilemmas. And the more skills an internal IT resource has, the more expensive they’ll be, regardless.
Managed service providers, contrastingly, are able to deliver expertise across a broad spectrum of IT services because they’ve already built up an entire team of technically trained and knowledgeable personnel.
4. Proactive, strategic IT consulting
The aforementioned three factors – fixed costs, functional scalability, and access to experts – taken together are what allow managed IT services to offer proactive, strategic IT consulting.
Because costs are predictable and there’s the capability to easily address day-to-day needs, managed providers have the practical ability to transition into a proactive IT stance.
Because providers are built on a team of experts, they have the depth of knowledge across IT areas that are needed to provide high-level consulting insight.
Managed IT services are the best way to eliminate IT firefighting and move to IT strategy-building.
Ready for IT support that gives your St. Louis business an advantage?
If you’re ready to move beyond IT firefighting and transition to strategic IT that sets your business ahead – let’s talk.
At ATB Technologies, we provide support for St. Louis businesses using the managed service model to deliver proactive IT.
We’ve found that the quality and efficiency of your IT systems is directly related to the ease of communication and comfort your team has with their IT provider. The key to creating systems that serve your business well is rooted in having IT professionals that make that process enjoyable and earn your trust across the organization.
Too many businesses are stagnating with IT issues thanks to a lack of communication or personality issues that come from bad communication that builds mistrust over time. We remove this barrier by hiring for communication skills and customer service.
Our end-to-end approach gives businesses the best technology for their needs and prevents issues before they happen so that our clients can turn IT into an advantage. If you’re looking for better IT delivered via a model makes sense – get in touch today.