You know how important technology is. If you're like most other businesses technology will play a huge part of your day to day operations.You'll have to invest in technology but you're not a tech expert so you are going to need someone to look after it for you.
The answer? IT support.
You might have heard of IT support before but not be sure what it covers. Or you may have IT support already but are you getting what you should from it?
Here is an overview of what IT support is and the benefits your business should be getting from it.
What is IT support?
IT support is a broad term because it can cover large parts of a business. The level of service can vary greatly depending on each businesses needs. It can also depend on the IT knowledge in the business. Many companies with IT staff still use IT support companies.
In simple terms, an IT support company will look after your companies technology. They will fix IT problems when they occur, set up new machines, look after your IT security, protect and backup your data, some (like us) will also look after your telephones.
IT support is more than just mere time-saving though. The right IT support can help your business be more productive and it can even save you money. In fact, there are many benefits to using IT support.
Why IT support is so important?
Protecting your business from cyber-crime
Cyber attacks are more common than ever every 14 seconds a business will be victim to a ransomware attack. It's not just the big companies that are getting attacked either. Small businesses are targeted 43 per cent of the time so size is not a defence.
Do you know how to detect the wide spectrum of attacks and viruses out there? Cybercriminals are so advanced now you need experts to protect your business. IT support will defend your IT infrastructure against cyber threats.
Data storage and backup
Data is the lifeblood of a modern business. An IT support provider will manage and store your data. That means it will be easily accessible to whoever needs it in the business but also protect it from malicious attacks.
If anything was to happen to your data (It's impossible to protect your data 100%, human error can easily put your data at risk despite the best security efforts) you will need to have it backed up and recoverable. To do that properly you need to use an IT support provider.
This is a big advantage of having a good IT support company (I say good, because not every IT company does this). They will monitor your systems and can fix issues before they can affect your business.
This will greatly reduce any downtime that might occur and make sure your business can remain as productive as ever.
Predictable IT costs
If you only get IT help when things go wrong (known as break-fix) you often end up paying more than you would for support. The problem with break-fix is that with each fix the immediate problem is fixed but the underlying problem is not, so the issues will arise again and again.
One-off fixes are often expensive. Your IT spend can vary greatly from month to month making it impossible to budget. IT support comes at a fixed price each month. Be careful though as some companies offer a monthly fee but a lot of the work is an additional extra, so you end up paying more in the long run.
Your business is not going to be full of IT experts (and it shouldn't need to be). Having access to a wealth of IT knowledge would cost your business £100,000's each year if you were to employ them. By using an IT support company you get all that expertise and experience for an affordable monthly fee.
Long term planning
As before your business is likely to lack IT expertise so many companies find it difficult to plan their technology needs beyond the immediate future. That will end up being expensive and usually harms business productivity.
What to look for in an IT support partner
Like any product, not all IT support companies are created equal. While it may seem that every company offers the same thing that is not the case. Prices will also vary but be careful of picking the cheapest option because IT support is a case of you get what you paid for it.
These are the 3 key factors you should look for from an IT support provider.
Of course, this is going to be a big factor for a business. You want your issues fixed as soon as possible so you can get back to work. Discuss response times with potential providers and find out if they offer SLA (service level agreements) on response times.
Does your IT support provider tell you about issues or do you have to notify them every time? Proactive monitoring allows a provider to identify and fix issues before they can become a problem that stops your business from working.
IT support is designed to make the most out of your technology but by working with a strategic IT partner they can help technology get the most out of your business. This is rare in an IT provider, but something we offer at Infotech, and strategic planning around your IT has numerous benefits to your business.
Technology plays such a big part of modern business that IT is too important to ignore. We've covered the value that really good IT support can offer a business, whether is protecting your business from cyberattacks or increasing productivity and saving time.