A friend recently asked, “What are key ways you know you need Managed IT Services?” Instantly, a rendition of the Jeff Foxworthy redneck one liners started running through my head. They were not insults, but rather statements that reflected how far we’ve come.
I’m not a stand-up comedian of any kind (just ask my kids), but I thought I’d share some of the lines that ran through my head (all true, some funny).
You might need Managed IT Services if…
10. Your leaders still use a flip phone.
9. You think Cisco sells food.
8. Your computers are still running Windows XP.
7. Every time you call for IT Support, you get voicemail or hold music.
6. You’re still using your receptionist’s son to fix your network.
5. You’re using revenue generating or non-IT staff to fix your computers.
4. You’re still on a peer-to-peer network.
3. You think computer crashes are just part of using technology.
2. You could walk faster to deliver an email than your Internet connection.
And the No. 1 reason you might need Managed IT Services is…if you call five companies for the same problem.
If any of these felt true for your organization, you’d benefit from giving one of our IT specialists a call. (Your staff will thank you for it).
4 QUESTIONS TO ASK
On a more serious note, there are four key questions that organizations can ask to determine if they would benefit from Managed IT Services.
- How old is your technology?
Before you feel like your system is outdated and unserviceable, you’re ready for Managed IT Services. Most organizations have antiquated technology, usually servers and laptops, and don’t even realize it. Technology is evolving so quickly. It can be challenging to keep the technology updated and not resort to redneck fixes. Key indicators that your technology is outdated are: slow and frustrating speed to access business critical applications (whether on the Internet or corporate network), frequent security attacks, computer “crashes” and hardware no longer can be upgraded.
Managed Services allows organizations to more easily update their technology and roll all their hardware upgrades into a monthly operating expense, instead of a capital expense. Plus, your technology can easily be scaled up or down with little more than a few keystrokes. Managed IT is flexible and able to expand and contract as your business needs.
- What is your IT cost per user?
What I’ve found is that unless you know the cost, you’re likely spending too much. With Managed IT Services, organizations can know their exact spend on technology per user and get what they need as a fixed monthly cost. As Chief Information Officer at Marco, I also find it valuable to calculate and track the technology spend as a percentage of revenue.
With Managed IT Services, organizations standardize and update their technology and that has a direct impact on what they spend. I compare it to buying a car off the showroom floor to having one custom made at the manufacturer. You may be thinking, “Why would you manufacture a custom product?” But when it comes to technology, so often that’s exactly what organizations are doing – and sometimes without realizing it.
- How much time do you spend on IT support?
Take time to track this if you do not already – even for a month. Naturally, a move to Managed IT Services will relieve your internal IT staff from fixing the daily IT issues. But those issues also get resolved faster for the people impacted with one number to call to quickly reach a dedicated Support Desk. When organizations standardize their systems with Managed IT, they see more benefits. And as an added bonus, internal IT staff experience greater job satisfaction when they can take on special projects for their organization.
In one recent case, a client saw a 36 percent reduction in the number of hours spent on IT tickets from the first three months of their Managed IT Services contract to the most recent three months. How much is your staff time worth?
- What is your end user experience?
Take the time to understand how your employees feel about your IT environment and how it impacts their work. I encourage organizations to get a deeper understanding of the user experience through a survey, asking questions like:
- How satisfied are you with responsiveness of the help desk?
- How long does it typically take to resolve an issue?
- Do you have the tools you need to do your job in an efficient and effective manner?
We survey our employees annually at Marco. It’s common for IT support to respond promptly to the CEO or another executive, but what about everyone else? You can get some of the most valuable feedback from entry-level team members and those who recently joined your team from another organization.
Managed IT Services are becoming mainstay in organizations today, sought after even by self-described rednecks. Managed IT makes it easier to keep your technology updated and running effectively. When issues arise, your team members can speak to someone almost instantly and get the problem resolved. It’s no wonder so many IT professionals seek out Managed IT Services for their organizations.