When Is it Time to Hire a Managed IT Services Provider?

Managed IT Services Provider

Have you thought about outsourcing your IT services? Businesses of every size turn to managed service providers (MSPs) for assistance in completing their day-to-day tasks.

By 2023, the market of managed services is predicted to grow by more than nine percent. As long as you hire the right MSP, you should have no concerns related to losing control over IT processes. There is supposed to be a close collaboration between managed service providers and IT directors for everything to run smoothly. These professionals provide help desk support, reduce skyrocketing IT costs, minimize downtime, etc.

The following signs demonstrate itís the right time to hire such a provider.

You have been a victim of a cyberattack

One of the most obvious signs indicating itís time to hire a managed IT service provider is if your business has fallen victim to a cyberattack, such as malware, ransomware, DoS, or phishing attack. You probably arenít the only victim of cyberattacks, as the Coronavirus pandemic has led to an alarming rate of attacks on IT infrastructure. In the meantime, almost forty percent of IT leaders complain that cybersecurity vacancies are the most difficult to fill.

The deficiency of experienced and qualified cybersecurity personnel makes the process of keeping up with security advancements impossible for most companies, which boosts the risk of hacks. Fortunately, there are numerous managed IT service providers, such as Shipshape, offering unlimited on-site support. By collaborating with such a provider, your business will stay on top of cybersecurity advances and have sensitive data protected.

Skyrocketing IT costs

Another sign itís time to hire a managed IT service provider is the rise in information technology costs. Many businesses rely on the break-fix or pay-as-you-go model for information technology support, meaning they are overpaying for these services. This approach is considered reactive, not proactive, as no prevention of IT issues is conducted.

Hence, unexpected costs are expected to appear at any time. Hiring IT support only in the event of an issue results in revenue and productivity loss. Despite the general opinion, regular maintenance has proven to be more cost-effective compared to the break-fix model. Outsourcing these services to a managed service provider allows businesses to pay fixed monthly expenses, which are more budget-friendly than paying for unplanned emergencies.

Moreover, businesses stand to gain from a predictable IT budget they can count on. Just imagine the financial damage an emergency issue like hardware replacement may cause to your budget. In contrast, by teaming up with an MSP, you will be required to pay fixed costs every month that make the most out of your budget.

A limited IT staff

Another telltale sign you should outsource IT support is when having a limited information technology staff. While large corporations have the budget to create a dedicated in-house IT team, small businesses tend to use the assistance of other staff members when handling such issues. See this page for a definition of in-house and understanding the risk of outsourcing. Nevertheless, these workers have neither sufficient experience nor enough knowledge to cope with specific issues, which is why companies end up hiring outside consultants.

Additionally, in-house teams have a tendency to become complacent and isolated over time. They might eventually fail to keep up with the latest trends in the industry. In contrast, MSPs collaborate with numerous clients and are exposed to the most recent real-world information technology problems. They never cease to invest in training, education, and the required tools to serve clients.

Furthermore, these professionals are knowledgeable of the latest advancements in the field of technology and have many years of technical experience under their belts. Small businesses would definitely benefit from hiring a managed IT service provider, as it will take the role of an in-house team without incurring additional staff costs.

You need additional support for your remote workers

The Coronavirus pandemic has left no other alternative for most businesses than to transition to remote working environments. Two years after the pandemic started, the trend of remote working is still ongoing, meaning companies have probably become aware until now of the challenges brought by the change of working environment.

Even if your business has a dedicated information technology team, this staff is likely to have too much on its plate to deal with the problems of remote workers. Despite the presence of remote support tools available for use, in-house teams are usually too busy to apply them. In such scenarios, hiring an MSP is the best solution for providing remote workers with the necessary support.

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Managed services providers will recommend high-quality remote access software and have it installed. Also, they offer round-the-clock software support to ensure your workers face no challenges during their home office hours. Even if an issue arises, these experts will solve it fast and get employees back to speed in no time.

You are experiencing frequent downtime

Another sign indicating itís high time to hire a managed IT service provider is when experiencing excessive downtime. Downtime has a tremendous impact on brand awareness and reputation while causing lost productivity and wasted opportunities. Hence, no business should allow such long-term damage to its brand. The following link, https://www.websitemagazine.com/blog/7-tips-for-minimizing-website-downtime, includes seven tips for minimizing website downtime.

Additionally, downtime is a fierce enemy that every business should try to avoid. Computer networks should be operational 99.99% of the time with a maximum of six minutes of downtime on an annual basis. MSPs perform regular test server backups, monitor devices, and update devices regularly to minimize downtime and meet the imposed standard.

System migration

Most businesses require the assistance of a managed IT service provider when migrating from one system to another, which is a complicated process. If performed incorrectly, system migration might trigger lost data, extensive downtime, and security breaches. Many companies opt for migration, as the benefits are far more numerous than the risks.

When making a switch to new technology, businesses are provided with better productivity, cost savings, and improved scalability. MSPs are experts in terms of completing the migration process safely. They conduct an analysis of the current system and collaborate with clients in creating a migration strategy that corresponds to your business.

You need help desk support

Another sign that you should hire a managed IT service provider is when businesses need help desk support. Itís usually the first thing that crosses oneís mind when thinking about MSPs. The amount of help desk support depends on each business, but the act of leaving this service to be handled by an MSP reduces the burden on the in-house IT team.

Having a managed service provider as a partner enables the information technology staff to focus on larger projects. These professionals boost productivity and provide faster response times. They are available round the clock, meaning you will be able to expand your coverage.

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You arenít compliant with the necessary requirements

Another valid reason for companies to seek the assistance of a managed IT service provider is when being out of compliance. Certain industries require regulatory compliance apart from adhering to the proposed IT requirements.

Some of the standard compliance regulations that should be obeyed by businesses include HIPPA, GLBA, SOX (Sarbanes Oxley Act), GDPR, PIPEDA (Personal Information Protection and Electronic Document Act), etc.  By trusting your regulatory requirement issues to an experienced MSP, there are lower risks related to rule violations involving client data, credit card numbers, and others.

A lack of monitoring

The largest part of cyber threats can be prevented with regular IT maintenance and monitoring. Numerous studies show that over fifty percent of data breaches occur due to vulnerabilities for which there was an available patch, but it wasnít used. Consequently, the absence of regular maintenance means putting the IT environment at risk.

By outsourcing your maintenance and monitoring needs to an MSP, issues, and threats will be identified prior to becoming too serious. The first task these professionals perform is conducting a network assessment to determine the current status of the system. You will be provided with peace of mind that if any issue or a hacking attempt occurs, your MSP will handle the problem in the blink of an eye.

The bottom line

Developing companies should consider hiring an MSP to facilitate the work of their IT staff.

If you recognize yourself in some of the above-mentioned signs, itís time to hire one!