Using the right information technology (IT) is extremely important for any business. Providing the right computers, software, phone systems, and more is vital for efficiency. But what is even more important than choosing the right technology, is choosing the right IT support.
Following the COVID 19 breakout in March of 2020 companies have realized the need for not only in-office IT, but also for remote IT for their employees. This added layer of technological complexity just serves to emphasize every company’s need for fast, reliable, and affordable tech support. When it comes to selecting an IT partner for your business, there are generally four options: internal IT, staff augmentation, outsourced IT services, and managed IT services.
Internal IT support is fairly self-explanatory. This involves a company interviewing, hiring, training, managing, and paying in-house staff to handle all of their tech support and IT needs. There are several cons associated with this option:
- Cost: Internal IT is one of the most expensive IT support solutions. The market for good IT staff is competitive. Salaries for individual IT professionals range from $54,719 – $74,128 a year. Plus, staff salary is just one expense that you incur when managing your companies IT support internally. Other expenses you have to consider include: hiring costs, training costs, costs of equipment and software, et cetera.
- Staffing Issues: Given the expense associated with paying for Internal IT staff, many small businesses can only afford to hire one IT professional to handle their needs. The problem with this is that as your company grows it is easy to overwhelm your IT staff. With that you also have to consider sick leave and vacation days for your IT staff. What happens when your only IT expert goes on a vacation and you have a tech problem?
- Competition: Another thing to consider is the competitiveness of the market. What happens when your IT experts get better job offers elsewhere? They may leave and take all of their knowledge and experience with them. Then you have to go through the lengthy and expensive process of hiring and training someone new, only to have them leave as well.
- Data Control: While having internal staff that you trust manage sensitive data is a pro, there also cons that come with it. Managing that data in-house means that you are also responsible for data security, encryptions, backups, redundancy, and more.
Staff Augmentation involves a business contracting a third-party to provide temporary staff. Contractors typical can work remotely or on-site depending on the company’s needs. And contracts can last for a few weeks, a few months, or even years. The thing to remember though is that these contracted employees work for another company, they are not full-time employees of your business. Some of the cons associated with staff augment IT include:
- Cost: Staff augmentation can be expensive. Hourly rates for augmented staff range anywhere from $18 – $300 per hour. The payment for staff augmentation can also be unpredictable, since staff are hired on a per-project basis, not per-hour.
- Length of Contract: This option really only works for short-term projects. It is typically not a cost-effective solution for long-term tech support services. This is because contractors are typically paid at an hourly rate, which gets expensive in the long run. Contractors also don’t work directly for you, which can make long-term management complicated.
- Management Resources: Your team needs to manage the contractors in-house. Meaning the third-party will take care of the hiring for you, but you have to provide training, management, and anything else the contractor needs to complete the project.
Outsourced IT services involve a business contracting a specific project or task out to a third-party. This could involve outsourcing an IT help desk, server management, cloud setup, and more. Your company relies on the third-party to complete the task according to the contract. Some of the cons of outsourced IT are:
- No Control: When you outsource your IT project, you essentially give up all control of the project. So, you are completely reliant on your third-party partner.
- Specific Services: Outsourcing only works for specific services. So, if you contract a company to run your help desk that is all they will do. They will not manage IT security, they will not provide tech support, etc.
- Lower Standards: Outsourced IT professionals typically don’t have the same standards as you have for your own business. They will have their own standards for timelines, communication, and more.
Managed IT Services:
Managed IT services involves a company hiring a third-party to handle all of its IT needs. These companies are typically referred to as managed service providers (MSP). Some of the pros associated with MSPs are:
- Cost: Managed IT services tend to be more affordable and helps companies avoid overhead fees like those associated with hiring, training, and equipment. Another benefit is that, with the right IT service provider there are no unexpected fees, so you will have a predictable monthly payment plan. The average cost for most MSPs is $60 – $150 per user per month.
- Management: Training and managing technical staff in-house gets complicated when no one on your team understands the work. But, with an MSP you do not have worry about training and managing in-house IT staff. You will have a team of trained experts available to help with everything.
- Technology: MSPs have access to all of the latest technology needed to manage your company’s IT. Their staff also stays up-to-date on all of the latest trends and software.
- Competition: It’s no secret that the IT industry is competitive. But in the case of MSPs this is actually a good thing. If things don’t work out with your current MSP, the process of hiring a new one is not nearly as lengthy or expensive as hiring and training an internal IT expert.
- Scalability: MSPs typically offer a range of services, meaning you can scale up or down based on your needs. So, if you are a small business in need of IT support you can choose a less expensive plan. Then as your company grows you can upgrade your plan as needed.
Kapp Communications is a secure and reliable IT support managed services provider. Our services include: 24/7/365 monitoring, hardware and software audits, email and application support, anti-virus protections, and more. Plus, with our pricing program there are no surprises. We provide all-inclusive support.
Our company is one of the leading managed services providers in Pittsburgh, PA. We have been partnering with businesses since 1984 to provide IT security, IT consulting, and more. Contact a sales representative today to learn more about our affordable IT solutions.
The following is the list of sources used to gather pricing statistics:
- Internal IT: https://www.salary.com/research/salary/recruiting/it-professional-salary
- MSP: https://www.ironedgegroup.com/managed-services/how-much-should-managed-it-services-cost/
- Staff Augmentation: https://medium.com/an-idea/cost-of-remote-staff-augmentation-hire-talent-at-budget-friendly-rates-3724322666be