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Outsource IT or hire in-house? The factors to consider

Debating whether to hire an IT manager or to outsource for your company’s IT needs? Here are some of the pros and cons of each option

 

IT plays an essential, intrinsic role in any business – whether it’s simply a way to communicate with customers and staff, a means to complete business objectives like accounting or planning, or even an outlet for sales and business growth.

The infrastructure that your company relies on is highly important to your day-to-day activities. IT can require a complicated amount of set-up, maintenance and upgrades. So who is best suited to be responsible for your organisation’s technology?

Many business owners wrestle with the question of whether to hire an entire IT team or to outsource to IT solutions experts. Here are a few of the options that should be considered when choosing whether to outsource IT or keep it in-house:

Equipment and software

In order to house an internal IT team, your business would also likely need to invest in the hardware, software and equipment for any particular project or system. Alternatively, you could take on an IT solutions consultancy, who can typically provide a significant proportion of the required tools. Many IT consultants, like ourselves, also partner with tech organisations to offer discounts on the top software and equipment.

Outsourced IT firms will also know which tools or programmes will work best for your requirements because it’s more likely that they’ve been exposed to more technologies. An IT manager may only have experience with a handful of options, making it more difficult to implement any necessary – or strategic -changes the business may require.

Security

IT security is often overlooked, which is most commonly attributed to the fact that most companies don’t even realise that their business data is at risk until it’s too late.

It’s in your best interest to find data security services through an experienced and dedicated party. However, it can be difficult to stay on top of the latest threats, viruses and vulnerabilities. It’s more likely that an IT services organisation will have the time and resource to monitor and adapt to the latest trends in IT security, and to keep your organisation’s data safe.

One-off projects

An IT consultant can offer specialist knowledge when it comes to implementing new technologies within a business, as it’s likely they have completed a similar project in the past.

Plus, outsourcing for a contracted amount of time makes sense financially if you are working toward a project deadline. And, if the task requires a highly specialist skillset, it would likely be costly to hire a full-time employee who possesses those skills.

Complexity of the organisation’s IT systems

In terms of time and resource, it can be very valuable to employ someone who knows your IT system inside out, especially if your organisation has a complex IT system.

For this reason, it may be beneficial to take on someone who can handle IT on a long-term basis. This may be in the form of an internal IT director, or an IT solutions company that are willing to work on an ongoing support basis.

Budget

An IT employee will require a general range of knowledge, especially if your organisation is looking to rely on one IT manager instead of an entire team, which is a common situation within growing SMEs.

The average annual salary of an IT manager in the UK is £55,000, which is, of course, a consistent, unavoidable expense, on top of other costs associated with the hiring process, benefits, training, and purchasing the necessary equipment for the role.

Outsourcing allows you to work with a team of specialists who will likely have more expert knowledge in a wider range of solutions and can provide valuable discounts while also helping you save on costs from purchasing equipment.

Hybrid IT services

Many organisations choose to opt for a hybrid approach to IT management. Employing a small IT team for long-term projects and daily support may be necessary for your business, but you can also choose to leave the more strategic IT decisions, data management and security to the specialists.

This will allow for your business to take advantage of ongoing and expert IT support.

David Allen IT Solutions provides full IT consultancy services for businesses large and small.  We take the most suitable approach to IT support and maintenance for your organisation – whether that requires a hybrid approach working alongside your IT team, or being responsible for all aspects of your company’s IT security, data and programmes.

Contact us for a free IT consultation to learn how we can add value your business.

Posted: October 25th, 2016