Outsourcing your IT operations has many advantages, from the integration of the latest technology to overall cost savings for your company. Knowing when to outsource your IT operations can be a challenge. Below is a list of 14 reasons as to when to outsource your IT.
1. When You Understand The Economics Of Your Business
The decision to outsource IT goes beyond the costs of doing so versus the costs of keeping it internal. You have to understand your business and how it generates value. The cost of internal IT goes beyond the budget of the organization. Unless you are Amazon, Dropbox, Google or some other company that generates value because of its IT operations, you should consider outsourcing it.
2. It’s Never Too Early
It’s never early to be hosting everything in the cloud. Over the past few years, I’ve outsourced things like NOC to third parties as soon as the budget became available. For about $4,000 per month (in the Boston area), I can get 24/7 coverage of my production websites, plus other useful consulting help.
3. It Depends On Virtualization And Footprint
To some, Amazon Web Services count as “outsourcing,” as it manages networking, power, physical servers, base operating system images and more. To others, outsourcing can be paying for hosted versions of all sorts of business applications like Microsoft, Sales-force and so on. If you own a technology company, then outsourcing is adding risk to your business that you don’t want.
4. When It Enhances Your Business With Minimal Disruption
Make the decision based on what will enhance your business with minimal disruption. For older/larger companies, that may mean moving tech solutions to the cloud so you can stay current on the latest enhancements without having to manage upgrades or infrastructure yourself. For smaller companies, that could mean hiring IT personnel on contract so you can get the intermittent support you need.
5. Any Time Is Good
I’ve found that outsourcing arrangements work well for anyone from a startup to an established business. Outsourcing can help keep costs lower in terms of operations, provide greater talent and offer a way to scale up and down, according to the need for additional workers.
6. When It’s Not Your Core Competency
You never outsource your core competency. Conversely, you should always consider outsourcing what is not core to your company. Small businesses in particular can often greatly enhance their IT service by outsourcing to someone who specializes in supporting their industry. This frees them up to focus on working on their business.
7. When It Frees Up Time To Focus On Building Your Product
If your best IT people aren’t working on high-impact projects as much as possible, outsourcing IT operations can free them up to bring more value to more important initiatives. For example, outsourcing your phone system and servers might allow your best developer to focus on R&D of your core product, which in the long run will be much more valuable to your company.
8. When You’ve Streamlined Your Processes
The right time to scale or outsource your IT operations is when you have streamlined your processes within the department. The ability for a third-party resource to take over an internal operation is heavily reliant on how well the process is being executed and documented internally, at which point you can look to cut costs/scale at large.
9. When The IT Operation Is Not A Differentiator
Outsourcing is a good idea when the task or program doesn’t serve to differentiate your business any longer. Almost all of IT can be outsourced today; it’s really up to you as the IT leader to determine what is really providing value for your organization. If a piece of code, email platform or infrastructure do not differentiate you to your customer, outsource them.
10. When You Have A Trusted Screening Program
Outsourcing IT is only an option when you have an iron-clad, trusted screening program to vet those who have direct and indirect contact with your tech. With data constantly under attack, your company’s safety is in the hands of your IT department. Don’t consider outsourcing IT until the vetting process is comprehensive, covering everything from credential verification to identity authentication. ACCi is a trusted IT outsourcing company. We have been in business for 30 years and hire a team of experts who are available to service you and your business.
11. When You Want To Scale Your Business
Outsourcing to a firm that specializes in the areas you need is a great tactic when you want to take advantage of its expertise and scale your business. Instead of wasting time and money on experimenting, you can leverage a cheaper, more efficient service. Also, a good time for outsourcing could be when you’re considering expansion and your IT operations cannot keep up with the pace of growth. ACCi can keep up with your growth as well as advise you as you grow.
12. When Looking For Project-Based, Specialized Skill
I think it makes sense to outsource when you need to hire a specialized skill for a short amount of time. For example, you may need a computer vision engineer for one project that takes six months but won’t need that skill again in the foreseeable future. In cases like this, outsourcing is your best bet.
13. When IT Becomes Inundated
Increasing system complexity and a shortage of skilled IT pros are driving many organizations to consider not only IT outsourcing but other solutions that alleviate the heavy IT load, such as automation and cloud migration. To stay competitive, companies are becoming open to finding new ways of doing things that will result in higher productivity and greater efficiency for the business.
14. When You Know What You Want
Regardless of the level of responsibility outsourced, it’s important that the business defines what needs to be achieved. Lack of appropriate direction is one of the most common reasons for outsourcing to fail. Roles that involve business strategy or a business-level leadership component generally shouldn’t be outsourced due to concerns with contextual experience and conflicts of interest.
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