In-House or Out-Sourced Managed IT Services: Which Is Better For Your Business?
It’s often debated whether to maintain an in-house IT team or to out-source IT services. There is one thing that is not debatable – every company, both large and small, has an increasing need for a wide range of IT services. Their networks and devices must run at full capacity to maintain company speed and profitability.
Let’s examine the advantages and disadvantages of starting and maintaining an in-house IT team vs. out-sourcing to experts for IT services.
In-House IT Support
For many employees of a company, IT support is a valued lifeline. Many an employee has come into the office on a Monday morning, only to be greeted by a laptop that is on the fritz. They scurry down the hall to their IT team, computer in hand, looking for someone to get them back online in time for their weekly Monday morning meeting.
Unfortunately, small-medium sized companies often have a part-time IT staffer, who wears multiple hats and is not always available when needed. In many cases, IT support is not their primary function, and IT support ends up diluting their efforts in their primary role.
- In-house staff is always available onsite. When an emergency arises, they can simply walk up the stairs, jump into an elevator, or walk down the hallway to remedy the problem. They are only a phone call or an instant message away.
- Though it may take longer than out-sourced technicians, resident IT techs can obtain intimate knowledge of resources used daily: individual computers, networks, and all other technology used by employees. This can increase the chance of thorough problem solving and the prevention of future issues. (It should be noted that out-sourced IT companies don’t have the learning curve in-house IT techs have in many cases).
- The cost of paying hourly wages or salaries to an in-house team doesn’t stop when they aren’t repairing anything. Most businesses don’t experience problems consistently, resulting in IT staff being idle while waiting for an issue to arise. This can be an unnecessary drain on company finances.
- It’s expensive to recruit, hire, and train people for IT positions. Training, in particular, is costly, and there’s nothing worse than investing in an employee and having them lured away by a competitor, promising them more pay and better perks.
- Employee benefit costs continue to rise. In addition to paying competitive salaries, to retain employees companies must provide expensive comprehensive benefits such as good health insurance and retirement plans.
- Company-trained employees are often not as experienced or skilled at diagnosing and repairing complex network and equipment problems as out-sourced experts with more diversified staff.
Part-time IT staff that primarily has another job function within the company is often-times partially focused on their IT responsibilities, which leads to problems lasting longer than if an out-sourced company with more robust resources addressed the issue.
Out-Sourcing IT Services
Because of their complexity, it can be challenging for in-house technicians to diagnose problems, repair broken components, and fix slow connections quickly and cost-effectively. There are excellent companies available on an out-sourced basis to meet the needs of any company.
- By out-sourcing, training and employee benefits costs are alleviated. This will result in significant cost-savings to companies as these expenses are the responsibility of the out-sourced company.
- Standards enforcement: often out-sourced IT providers enforce standards that help eliminate issues, streamline processes, and simplify support. This creates a more stable environment and reaps the benefits of implementing systems across customers for peak efficiency.
- It’s often much more affordable to work with an out-sourced company because overhead costs are spread out over many client companies. This allows them to charge more affordable prices for repairs and upgrades.
- Out-sourced companies can provide access to sophisticated diagnostic software and repair tools to solve just about any problem, resulting in a very high level of service.
- Obscure problems can be solved readily by out-sourced IT companies. They have the advantage of having staff trained in a wide variety of niches, allowing them to troubleshoot more problems than an in-house team can. They also reduce time-to-resolution by applying solutions gleaned from similar fixes they’ve already applied to their customer base.
- The best out-sourced IT providers are so responsive and professional that they feel like a member of the team and are regarded as such by their customers.
- They’re available 24/7. In-house employees may be available for emergency calls, but they’re predominantly 8-5 workers. Out-sourced companies have qualified staff on call ‘round the clock for their customers.
- Because so many problems can be diagnosed and solved remotely, some out-sourced staff may not get ample hands-on experience to round out their capabilities.
- Staff may sometimes be tied up at another client’s location and are unable to respond as quickly as an in-house team could.
- Companies housing sensitive data need to invest the time to develop a relationship and trust with their out-sourced IT services provider.
Company size, budget, and infrastructure support needs will be the primary determinants of whether or not to bring a team in-house or to out-source IT services. For small-medium sized businesses, it can be concluded that their IT needs can be met advantageously through out-sourcing, and at a more competitive price.
Contact IntegriTech today to discuss your company’s needs and the benefits of out-sourcing your IT needs to a leader in managed IT services.