As your business grows, you feel like you're spending an increasing amount of time on information technology (IT) issues, and thus considering hiring IT employees? Are you unsure whether an internal IT team would be necessary for your business? Are IT issues starting to prevent your team being productive?
Let's dive into a frequent question among business owners and team leaders: "Does having an internal IT department make sense for small and medium businesses?".
What does the IT department do?
The IT team's ultimate objective is to ensure the business runs smoothly and efficiently, technology-wise. The IT team is generally in charge of providing technical support and troubleshooting technical issues, but also:
- IT infrastructure management: from hardware (mobile phones, computers, routers, etc.) and software to network set-up.
- IT budget and strategy: The IT team assesses the technical needs of your organization (hardware, software, tools, communication systems).
- Cybersecurity: the IT team has to ensure the security of the company and its compliance with international and federal laws.
- IT projects management: such as launching a new website or cloud migration.
With the rising cyber-attacks and the inevitable digitalization of businesses, IT is becoming a more significant concern for SMBs. However, despite this phenomenon, only 17% of small businesses are where they want to be with their technology use. It is not surprising since a small business usually has to create and manage a website while adopting and implementing software.
How to determine if you need an IT department
If the list of IT responsibilities above aligns with your business needs, or you're spending an increasing amount of time on technical tasks, you might require an IT department. And let's be honest, with most companies needing to be online and/or having access to technology to keep their services running; it is always good to have someone who can provide IT support.
However, this doesn't necessarily mean you must build your own IT department.
Good news: options for an IT team are not limited to hiring IT employees. You can indeed outsource your IT needs, and many firms offer full-time, part-time, or on-demand IT services.
To make the right decision, we recommend you list your company's IT needs, then investigate the IT implementation options that make sense for your business and budget.
--> In short, your organization does not need an internal IT team or director. However, you want to ensure your business has somebody on staff to be the relay with third-party IT companies and Managed Service Providers (MSPs), such as Lenet. This person's job may not be related to IT, but they should be considered as the person in charge of all IT-partner relationships and services management.
BENEFITS OF AN IT COMPANY
There are many benefits of hiring an IT company. Here are a few:
- Get access to a complete IT team made of techs with specialized knowledge;
- Reduce downtime risks;
- Ensure your company's cybersecurity;
- Give time to your employees to focus on their primary tasks and time for your few IT employees to work on IT strategy instead of Level 1 IT issues;
- Improve your teams' productivity.
IT outsourcing has Pros and Cons, but it should definitely be an option to consider for SMBs, especially with most MSPs offering IT management and IT co-management.
Are you still trying to figure it out? We offer a FREE consultation to help you make your decision.