Benefits of Outsourcing
Businesses have been using outsourced IT services for decades, and they’re likely to continue doing so in the future. Outsourced IT services offer many benefits that businesses find crucial for getting ahead in the modern era.
IT is among the most commonly outsourced service. Most businesses require technology-related services and resources for their businesses to function effectively. Some of these businesses may find that it’s too expensive to hire an in-house IT team for their needs, and therefore choose to outsource their IT needs to a 3rd party firm who can perform those duties for them
To put things simply, any process that could be performed from an off-shore location is something that you can outsource. These processes include center services, transaction processing, graphic services etc
Benefits of Outsourcing
Outsourcing IT offers numerous benefits for businesses looking to gain an edge over their competitors. These include:
- Providing More Control Over It Costs: When you switch to using an outsourced IT firm, you end up paying for only those services that you require. This allows you make savings, compared to the alternative of paying fixed costs for an IT team whose entire range of services you may not require.
- Saving on Hiring and Training Costs:Since you’re hiring the services of already qualified professionals, you’llbe saving your time and resources that would be otherwise spent on hiring and training competent IT staff.
- Increasing Efficiency: By outsourcing your IT needsyour business could adapt to changes swiftly instead of waiting for hiring-cycles toadjust IT staff.
- Receiving Services From Experienced Professionals: It can be difficult to know if the IT staff you’re hiring are suitable and qualified for the duties you’d like them to perform, especially if your own background isn’t in IT. In such situations,the right move could be to hire services from a firm that is known to supply qualified and experienced IT professionals.
- Allows Your Business to Compete With Larger Firms: Larger competitors often have their own in-house IT firms that are able to provide superior technology and services than smallfirms. However, with the aid of outsourced IT services, smaller firms gain access to similar technology and services as their larger counterparts, thereby leveling the playing field.
Many firms have benefited from using outsourced IT services. Let’s look at a suitable case study to illustrate some of these benefits.
Case Study: Gourmet Candy Company
Information technology is important for the development of breakthroughs within the manufacturing industry. They can speed up the process of diversification for the offering of new products, increase competitiveness between firms, and lead to better pricing, which can provide benefits to both firms and customers.
The Gourmet Candy Company (GCC) had been producing chocolates and sweets for over two decades, and had beenselling their products across 20 countries by the mid-2000s. In 2005 they had planned an expansion project for the purpose of growing their business further. After relocating their offices to a different city, they were seeking experienced IT managed service providers to support their in-house IT team during the expansion process.
The owner of GCC had already outsourced manufacturing and distribution of the company’s products and wanted to explore outsourcing IT infrastructure by using the services of other professionals. He chose to hire an IT service firm called Advantage for this purpose.
Advantage performed an IT audit and identified some key areas where improvements could be made within the existing business framework.This IT audit included:
- Evaluating the systems and processes GCC had in place for keeping company data secure.
- Looking for inefficiencies in IT systems and management processes.
- Testing whether information management processes were compliant with specific laws, standards and industry practices.
- Evaluating the integrity of GCC’s data and highlighting any potential risks GCC could be susceptible to, and providing solutions to mitigate those risks.
After completing the audit Advantage found three important areas where the company needed improvements:
- Overburdened IT staff: The existing IT staff at GCC had been struggling to keep up with their current demands, and would have been unable to cope with the added workload that the planned expansion entailed. The company would have needed to hire additional IT staff to meet these needs, and some of these added costs could have negated the benefits of such an expansion.
Solution: Advantage provided GCC with end-to-end IT management services such as Dynamics GP and IT support in a manner where they were able to effectively cope with the high demands the expansion placed on IT infrastructure, and at a lower price than GCC had been previously paying.
- Poor Data Back Up Processes: GCC had purchased several different products from different vendors for creating back-ups of data. Each business function had used a different method for performing back-ups. This resulted in back-ups being inefficient and risky due, and lead to difficulties when attempting to recover data.
Solution: Advantage then provided GCC with a more robust data backup process that was better organized, secure, and compliant with legal requirements while also being easy to deploy.
- No SQL support for ERP: GCC had purchased their Dynamics GP solution via a provider that did not specialize in Dynamics GP. GCC assumed this provider had been performing regular SQL backups, while on the other end, the provider assumed GCC had been performing regular SQL backups themselves. The result was that no SQL backups were being performed.
Solution: GCC then shifted their Dynamics GP over to Advantage, who were able to provide the right kind of SQL support for their Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP).
This is just one of many examples of a large firm benefiting from the external insights and resources that an outsourced IT service was able to provide.Similar to this case, many businesses tend to be unaware of the problems and inefficiencies that riddle their IT departments and stretch their resources thin.
An outsourced IT firm may be just the thing that confirms your suspicions about your IT department not living up to its full potential.