It’s difficult being a small business owner. From determining what clients to take on to marketing campaigns, you have to make the final calls. There’s also the reality of being responsible for ensuring that your business is making enough money to pay your staff, invest in necessary infrastructure and resources, and work towards business longevity. Another factor placed squarely on your shoulders is weighing up whether or not to hire for in-house or outsource certain business activities and processes.
This last point is especially true in regard to whether or not to outsource IT support. The reality is that any modern business needs to stay abreast of technological developments and have IT support structures in place to ensure smooth operations. But this can be incredibly expensive for smaller businesses, as both the acquisition of hardware and software can be pricey – not to mention hiring qualified personal to run such support. Thus, the question is not whether or not IT assistance is necessary, but rather whether you should gain this assistance from a full-time in-house department, or outsource it from a reputable company. To make this call, it might be necessary to outsource IT solutions when…
You can’t employ full-time staffers
It can work out substantially cheaper to outsource your IT support to a credible company than to hire for in-house. This is because the costs associated with paying IT professionals are the responsibility of the company to whom you are outsourcing, not yours. In other words, you will not have to budget for paying someone (or multiple people’s) salary, bonus, benefits, or so forth. Rather, you pay for a set package offered by the company you hire that suits your budget. You are then also better guaranteed to receive the required services without the hassle of managing IT employees.
You’re not well-versed in technology
As much as small business owners like to think they can do it all, the reality is that everyone has strengths and weaknesses. And oftentimes, owners have a weakness when it comes to technological-related knowledge. You might be really good at administration, marketing, or the likes, but if your business is lagging behind in the kind of IT equipment it’s using, the kind of software it’s adopting, or the kinds of 4IR-relevant developments (think AI, cloud computing, etc.) it’s embracing, the possibilities of your company not being as successful as it could be is high.
And this extends to hiring for in-house. If you don’t know much about IT, it is possible for you to hire someone who is not as clued up as they claim. In contrast, outsourcing to an IT specialist company could ensure that you hire quality, as you can base your choice on accreditation, customer reviews, awards, years in business, and more.
If you can support an in-house IT department, then do so. But, if either of the noted points apply, you might be better served outsourcing your IT solutions, at least until such a time as you can accommodate an in-house department.
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