Today the majority of businesses depend entirely on their IT systems thus IT support can be, and often is, vital to businesses, but it is something that if frequently misunderstood. Many businesses consider IT support only when things have gone wrong and they need a quick fix to get them out of a pickle.
Of course IT support is necessary at such times, and can be vital if you want to avoid losing customers and compromising your reputation, but it can be much more than that. IT support can help you to avoid such problems in the first place and keep the infrastructure of your company running securely on the rails. For instance proper IT support should ensure that your systems are up to date, efficient and safe; that your costs are minimised; and that any potential problems are identified and fixed before they cause real problems.
Size and Lifecycle
The IT support that you need will depend on the size of your business and where it is on its lifecycle; for instance whether it is a new start-up, a rapidly growing business, or a mature sized enterprise. Let’s look at some of the different challenges that are involved.
Small businesses and start-ups
Often small businesses and start-ups lack the in-house IT expertise and experience needed to maximize the benefits of technology, and may make sub-optimum business technology decisions. The approach tends to be non-systematic with multiple suppliers as a result of developing case by case solutions.
Here IT support can help consolidate technology minimizing the number of suppliers and maximizing customer service while minimizing costs. It can ensure that data is protected and that networks are secure. It could help you with appropriate cloud service solutions.
Growing business with up to 100 users
Most businesses with 25 to 100 users are likely to have a reasonable amount of IT expertise and infrastructure. However they are also likely to hit the buffers in terms of the IT investment that is necessary for continued growth. Costs of IT investment technology and maintenance overheads can rapidly spiral upwards, and generally there are more pressing business concerns.
Here IT support can be vital in order to rein in these potentially spiraling costs and protect your bottom line. Perhaps the best solution is to migrate your IT to the cloud, either as an entirely off-premises solution or as a hybrid cloud. IT support should help you to identify the optimum solution and help you with the process, especially if you have a mobile workforce or have a BYOD (bring your own device) policy.
Medium sized businesses
Medium sized businesses are likely to have an entirely different range of IT concerns; they will have already survived though the earlier stages of the business life cycle and their IT expertise is likely to be considerable.
However this does not mean they cannot benefit from IT support; in fact the reverse is the case. There are still likely to be gaps, and in the modern world there is unlikely to be underused recourses that can be called on when those gaps need to be plugged.
For instance support might be needed to deal with hardware issues, exchange server migration, email management, regulatory compliance, e-discovery and so forth. Support might be needed in developing strategic plans, providing cloud backup and archiving along with disaster recovery systems.
Whatever the size of your business might be, there are potential benefits to be gained from proper IT support. Don’t wait until a problem happens, fire fighting is rarely the best solution. IT support can be a cost effective way of keeping your business growing.