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Pulling Together – 5 Key Benefits of Co-sourcing IT Support Services

April 18 2016

One of the biggest challenges for SMEs and relatively small organisations is budgeting sensibly without compromising on quality. This is certainly true where IT services, support and, increasingly, IT security is concerned.

Good IT service support is vitally important but it can seem prohibitively expensive to hire a complete team of your own in-house IT experts. This is why many smaller businesses look to outsource IT support completely.

But that doesn’t suit everyone…

While outsourcing and in-house support both have pros and cons, there is a third option that combines the best of both worlds. This is known as co-sourcing. Co-sourcing simply means using a combination of your own in-house IT support and partial outsourced third party support.

This might seem like a strange concept at first but there are actually several unique benefits to it, which is why an increasing number of businesses are now choosing to co-source IT support.

 

Below are five of the most compelling reasons to consider co-sourcing IT support in your business.

1. Lower costs

Keeping expenditure in check is always something that business owners have to think about and co-sourcing IT support is one of the best ways to do this. The overheads of co-sourcing IT support are usually much lower when compared to having a 100% dedicated in-house team.

The reason for this is that you don’t have to pay an outsourced IT team a full-time wage, pension & other benefits or cover their holidays or absence. The fact that you can rely on outsourced IT support for certain tasks means that you can save money by limiting the overall number of in-house staff you might have to employ.

Finding and retaining reliable and experienced IT engineers is becoming increasingly difficult – especially those that have a wide range of skills. It’s much easier and cheaper to have a modest support team in-house and then lean on outsourced support as and when you need it for specific projects, escalation of help or overflowing helpdesk requests.

 

2. Flexibility

Another great benefit of co-sourcing is how flexible it is. Your in-house team might be fully capable of dealing with day-to-day issues but require more help for larger projects or specific functions such as security or routine maintenance. For example, your business might be migrating to Office 365 and your in-house team wants support from a team that has experience with this.

When taking on a project such as migration to a new system, it’s extremely useful to be able to rely on people who have experience with it. There are all types of issues that can arise when switching to a new system and having outsourced support can help you deal with them much more easily.

This kind of flexibility is ideal for businesses that don’t require (or cannot afford) a large team for support on a day-to-day basis but still want to be able to rely on high quality and experienced support when required.

 

3. Scalability

A unique challenge that fast-growing businesses face is being able to scale up their operation at an affordable rate. When your business grows and you have to take on more staff and serve a larger customer base, it makes sense that you’ll also have to upscale your supporting functions such as IT.

Doing this by hiring more on-site engineers isn’t practical for a lot of businesses. Co-sourcing enables you to upscale your IT support as your organisation grows without the need to hire more, expensive engineers.

 

4. Frees up your in-house team

Your IT department shouldn’t exist solely for staff support. They should also be able to advise you on how to get the most from your systems and implement improvements and changes that benefit your business or organisation as a whole.

Unfortunately many in-house IT teams are stuck dealing with menial tasks that eat up time and don’t allow them to put their skills to use in more creative ways. This is another area where co-sourcing can be extremely beneficial.

You might choose to hire in-house IT staff that can help you improve your business while outsourcing tasks such as security, updates, basic support etc.

 

5. Improved security

If your in-house IT team are overstretched then it’s possible that your systems and data will be at greater risk. Hackers and malware authors look to target vulnerabilities in networks, such as out-dated plug-ins, missing security patches and weak passwords. Even seemingly minor vulnerabilities can lead to your network being compromised or infected with malware, such as CryptoLocker, so having a good security system in place is a must.

Co-sourcing can help you to ensure that your IT security is up to scratch and there are no weaknesses putting your business at risk.

 

 

If you’d like more information on how Grant McGregor can help your business with our co-sourcing model of providing coordinated IT services, then don’t hesitate to get in touch.

 

Image source: Flickr

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