You are already way ahead of the competition. This is because most small businesses make one big mistake when it comes to managing their office IT. They often let someone “techy” on staff handle it as a side-job. But that is a dangerous decision that often results in catastrophic, and even business ending disasters.
Why you need actual IT experts to handle your business IT
Most people tend to think anything “techy” can be handled by the nearest “techy” person around. This is a normal instinct that we’ve all grown accustomed to in our private lives. It’s quite common to see someone ask the neighbour’s kid for help when their computer runs into an issue. They say things like “Oh, Bob’s kid is into that computer stuff, let’s ask him to fix this stuff”.
Now, even when someone does it in their private life, it isn’t a great idea. However, within the context of running a business, it can be downright dangerous. Adopting this mindset means putting your entire business at risk.
As scary as it sounds, that is exactly what you are doing when you suggest that Robert from Marketing or Jane from Sales should also handle the “IT stuff” in your business. You know that they’re into that “techy stuff”, and you think that they would love to help out with the IT stuff in the office.
This is a very bad idea, for a multitude of reasons. The main one being that IT today is a very complex and ever-evolving subject, much like medicine. In fact, it’s not too much of a stretch to compare the profession to a medical role. An IT expert has to be involved in his or her specialty on a full-time basis just to keep up. Most decent IT professionals spend as many hours in continued education as a doctor or a surgeon would.
Why you need a full team of IT experts, and one or two will not suffice
The previous comparison to medicine is apt for other reasons as well. IT has evolved over time to the point where separate areas of IT are now full-blown separate specialisations and professions.
As you know, in medicine, you have specialisations such as dentists, pediatricians and surgeons to name just a few. And all of these are separate specialised professions. The same is increasingly becoming the case in IT. In fact, it is becoming impossible for any one human being to be well versed in every aspect of managing IT properly.
Well organised IT teams deal with this in a clever way. They make sure that every team member has all the best and most up-to-date general IT information. And when we say general, it means they’re well versed in every area of IT, up to a point where anyone on the team can handle most things, most of the time.
While it is simply impossible for one person to have 100% of the latest and best knowledge on every aspect of IT, a well-organised team can achieve this feat through the power of combinations. Different members on the team will specialize in, and acquire more skill in different areas so that as a team, they do guarantee that 100% of your IT needs are met at the highest level possible.
But an SME can’t afford to hire and manage an entire team of people just for the IT. What’s the solution?
Fortunately, there is a solution. It’s called a managed service provider (MSP). This is where you outsource your entire business IT to an external team of IT professionals.
The beauty of a properly structured MSP service is that you get all the same benefits as if you had your own team of IT specialists. When you hire a quality MSP provider (such as Inspired Techs) you get 24/7 access to a team of IT experts who act exactly the same as if they were part of your business.
This means that for a very reasonable fixed monthly subscription you get all the same benefits as if you hired a full team of IT specialists to work right there in your office as regular part of your staff.
How to pick the right MSP team to manage your IT?
The “managed IT service provider” model was invented to give you access to a team of experts that act as if they are part of your own business. However, not all managed service providers live up to this vision or dream.
Unfortunately, a lot of so-called “managed service” providers simply act as “break-fix repair people”. That is, they don’t care about you or your business until something breaks, and they just come and fix it. They might use a monthly subscription model in terms of payment structure, but that’s their only real connection to a true MSP service.
So how do you recognise a true MSP provider with a team of experts that care about you and your needs?
We’ve written about recognising a quality MSP separately, and you can read about it over here. However, in the context of recognising the quality of their team, there are some additional things to consider.
Do they make it a point to brag about the quality of their team? If you study our website you will notice we are quite proud of our inspired techs. We use every opportunity to talk about them, and feature them everywhere we can.
You can go ahead and look at our team, by name, get to know them and learn more about them. Our service isn’t just a faceless brand obscuring a bunch of anonymous “IT people” in the background.
When you see something like this, consider it a good sign. When you’re hiring an IT provider you’re not just paying for a set of “IT skills”. You want to deal with actual humans that treat your employees as their colleagues.
But here’s one extra tip to recognise if they’re willing to treat you and your staff right
In our guide on finding a quality dependable and honest team, we give you a couple of additional tips for recognising the right team.
One of those tips is that you want to interview them and ask them a couple of technical questions about their service. Then pay attention to how they answer. Are they able to explain things in an easy-to-understand way? Or is it full of technical jargon and hard to get?
This is a great way to learn about the way they do things and where their focus lies. An ideal team of IT experts should do more than just deal with the different devices in your offices. They also need to deal with and collaborate with your staff on a human-to-human level.
If you’re in Australia, we have some good news for you
At the moment we have a couple of slots open for new clients (or rather “partners” as we like to think about our clients).
- If you want to save time on research and want an IT team that meets all these criteria and much more, you’re in the right place.
- If you like the idea of a service provider that views you as a business partner and cares about your business growth, good news, you’ve found us.
In fact, we’d love to hear from you. So feel free to contact us at any time.