There are two fundamental approaches to ensure your business’ IT systems run smoothly. You can either keep the task in-house by hiring full-time IT administrators and technicians on your payroll, or you can outsource the job to an IT partner. Which one’s a better fit totally depends on your business’s requirements, but outsourcing may bring benefits you never thought of.
There are two ways of going about outsourcing IT, break/fix model of support where, when something breaks, your provider will fix it within an agreed-upon Service Level Agreement (SLA) or a Managed IT Services model of support.
Managed Services guarantee proactive support and maintenance of your servers and systems 24/7 ensuring fixes happen before anything breaks. This is more like an investment than a business expense, emphasized by the fact that the near-elimination of network downtime leads to a significant increase in employee productivity.
Managed Services Providers (MSPs) like CloudOrbis conform to a “five nines” uptime SLA, which refers to 99.999% availability of services on your network when it’s under their watch. Precisely, this equates to a mere five minutes of downtime per year for most small- and medium-sized businesses.
What’s the difference between 5 minutes of downtime per year and, say, an hour of downtime that recurs on a monthly basis? According to Statista.com’s Technology & Telecommunications research, the average cost of downtime per hour for a quarter of their worldwide respondents was anywhere from $301K to $400K.
24/7 Expertise & Availability
The exact cost of your business experiences from a downtime occurrence depends on numerous factors. The time of day, industry, and the number of employees impacted are all contributors, but Statista’s figures give us a sight of just how ugly the situation can be if you have no mechanism in place to avoid network crashes.
When you outsource your IT to an MSP, automated systems track network efficiency and data availability 24/7. Monitored in real-time by expert technicians in a Network Operations Center (NOC), which is like Mission Control for every device and application your employees depend on to do their jobs.
Contrast this to hiring an in-house “IT guy” who’s prone to sick days, vacation time, and benefits — then keep in mind that Managed Services come with 24/7 availability — and it starts to look more and more like an investment than an operating expense, all for an affordable, fixed monthly fee.
Cybersecurity & Compliance
The 24/7 availability that is the hallmark of Managed Services cannot be exaggerated, especially when the discussion turns to data protection. Hackers are working 24/7, nearly a quarter of businesses Toronto suffered a cyberattack in the last two years. Network defense has become a kind of cat-and-mouse game that always requires innovative strategies to be enforced.
Network uptime, cybersecurity & compliance strategies are most effective when they are proactive and hands-on. This means day-and-night scanning of your servers, application, and employee devices is mandatory, along with robust firewalls, anti-malware programs, and data backup schemes in line with regulations like HIPAA, SOX, and GDPR.
As with network downtime, cyberattacks can be ridiculously expensive. Which begs the question: Is it worth it to invest in professional protections upfront, or wait to deal with the fallout of a data breach after the fact?
More than Protective Measures
Viewing proactive IT support as an investment instead of an expense is motivated by more than how it helps you avoid issues. There’s a massive labor-saving component — and therefore, cost-saving component — to Managed Services as well.
Partnering with an MSP will eliminate the need for your teams to install or upgrade any hardware or software. This goes for servers and computers, operating systems and software applications, Wi-Fi networks and VoIP phones, everything. You won’t lift a finger.
And when that gets added to the list of true “support” functions we’ve discussed — near-zero downtime, optimized network efficiency, and data availability, security, compliance — it’s clear why Managed Services are so popular among Toronto’s transport, legal, manufacturing, and financial services firms. Call us today for a free, in-depth consultation.