Have you been thinking that you may have outgrown your solo IT Provider? Would your growing team benefit from more access to tech support? Are you getting slow response times when you ask for help? And most importantly, are you using up to date, proactive network security techniques to limit risk from the digital threats that have been increasing sharply since 2013?
When Is It Time To Switch From A Solo Computer Guy To A Small Business IT Company?
You know your needs are changing and you're smart enough to know the value of adapting. In today's digital world, no matter the size of a team, all teams need proactive network security in place. If you don't have it yet, you can get it with a little help. Here are some telltale signs that you have outgrown your solo IT provider and are ready for better IT Support.
We all want to save money. We all cut costs where we can. You wouldn't be the only person who started a new venture and opted for a DIY network setup or had your IT network setup done by a family member or a friend. But, as that person returns to their full time job, their ability to provide you with prompt IT Support is extinguished. The solution is to find an IT Provider who can offer you support during business hours. As a growing SMB, you will want to seek out an IT Provider for small business, as their offerings and prices will be in line with your needs and budget.
In a way, your IT Provider is your IT Police, or your Chief Information Technology Officer (CIO). You rely on them to serve you when you have an issue, and protect you from threats. Many solo IT Providers don’t have the resources to support growing teams. Computer security on a single machine is different from security across a team. They often can’t invest the time or tools that improve small business network security and help overcome the increased “human factor” risks. Each one of your team members is an added layer of risk to your network and data. It’s important to have the right IT security in place to help offset the human factor and keep your data safe.
Begin a search for a Managed Services Provider who can automate some IT Security tasks for you, and take on the remaining tasks on a set schedule. Then you don't have to be your own IT department and you can rely on regular IT updates.
IT Support Response Time
You email for help because you can’t access a document, and a client is waiting. But you don’t get a response for two days and are then told the earliest you can be seen is tomorrow. It may just be a document issue this time, but next time you may have a more critical issue such as a failed computer or a ransomware infection. Can your business afford to wait?
Find an IT provider who can offer you help desk services during business hours. You can opt for a "cheap" overseas phone support provider, however there are downsides.
The best way to approach this is to find a local Managed Services Provider who will begin a relationship with you by becoming intimately familiar with your unique network, users and needs, and will be better able to serve your team anytime you need help. They can offer remote and phone support as well as in office visits when needed.
Managed Service Providers also address preventative maintenance and network security, not just break & fix help. With rising digital security threats, increasing network security is something all organizations must address, and it's a smart strategy to outsource this to trained professionals.
Many solo acts don’t have the resources to update their own skills, leaving them (and you) stuck with outdated approaches to technology and security, and often, stuck without options. They also don't have the time to truly watch over your network. One person can only do so much. They are simply stretched too thin trying to run a business and also be a technician in that business.
If you have heard “we can’t do that” without an explanation as to why or an explanation of the necessary upgrade path to give you what you want, your IT provider may be stuck for time or resources, and you may be missing out.
If your team doesn't know about ransomware or phishing, you may benefit from an IT provider that offers a monthly newsletter to speak to the IT issues that commonly affect small businesses like yours.
If you have never had a network security audit, it is time. It's a wise investment to make to help you protect your data and reputation.
If you are missing basic IT policies such as user access control or password policies, you may be unnecessarily exposed to risk. You can limit that risk with a little IT planning help.
If you are still reading this, this article has spoken to you and you know it is time to explore options. To quote William Pollard, “To change is difficult. Not to change is fatal.” Since you know you need a change, take action today. You already know that adapting is key to survival and growth. Now you just have to find the right IT company to delegate the tech work to so you can focus on your core projects.
TUCU is a Toronto Managed Services Provider: We Fix Techaches. Join our long list of happy clients dating back to 2003 and get Managed IT Services for your SMB. With better security, insight, support and management, you can focus on your business goals.