As the digital world is continuously evolving, new and improved systems are being developed, which requires advanced programming knowledge to maintain. As business owners need to maintain servers, customer support, and IT infrastructure to keep the business running smoothly, the need for professional IT experts increases every year.
However, hiring IT professionals, providing appropriate training, and obtaining IT infrastructure isn’t practical for every business. That’s when outsourcing IT support comes in. Like ShipshapeIT IT Support, many companies made it possible for all businesses to have access to talented IT experts without hiring and training their own.
Why Companies Are Outsourcing IT Support
Companies are outsourcing IT support for many reasons, like the following:
- Cost-Efficient: One reason is that it’s cheaper to have someone else handle the day-to-day tasks and responsibilities than having an in-house team.
- Expertise: It can also be beneficial because there might not be enough qualified employees on staff, which means that you need the required skills outside your company.
- Different Perspective: Outsourcing IT support can also help because it may give companies a different perspective on handling specific problems.
- Shared Responsibility: Finally, outsourcing IT support might make sense if the company’s in-house team doesn’t have time or resources to take responsibility for all of their tasks and responsibilities.
With all these benefits, it’s no wonder why outsourcing IT support is becoming more and more popular.
IT Outsourcing Mistakes To Avoid
Even if outsourcing IT support sounds like a good idea. It would be best if you avoided mistakes for it to be successful. Knowing these pitfalls can save your company money and time in the long run.
1. Hiring An Outsourced IT Company That Doesn’t Know Your Industry
When you’re outsourcing IT support, make sure that the company understands your industry. It will help them provide better service to you and your employees. When they don’t know what’s happening in your business, it can cause more problems than if they weren’t there at all.
For example, an outsourced IT firm hired by a medical clinic that doesn’t know anything about the medical world might make decisions that are more suited for a different industry. Hiring an IT company that understands your industry will help keep things running smoothly.
2. Not Checking The Outsourced Provider’s Reviews Or References
Companies that don’t take the time to check reviews or references before hiring an outsourced provider might end up regretting their decision. You want your outsourcing vendor to have a good reputation for quality customer service. This can be done by doing due diligence and ensuring they’re a good fit before hiring them.
A quick search can help you find reviews of the company’s clients and past work, as well as testimonials from satisfied customers that’ll give you some peace of mind that this is the right provider for your needs.
Researching what other customers have to say about the provider through their reviews can be very helpful because you’ll hear from people who’ve used them before and might even get some inside tips to effectively work with the outsourced IT support company.
3. Failing To Provide Enough Details About Your Needs And Expectations
It’s essential to provide clear instructions on your needs and expectations. If you don’t, then the outsourced IT support team may not meet those needs or live up to your standards.
For example, suppose a company is looking for help with customer service email inquiries. In that case, they might have specific guidelines about how quickly the IT support should answer, what tone to use in the response, and many more. If you fail to provide this information up front, then it’s possible that your outsourced IT support team won’t know how quickly they should respond or whether they’re answering with a helpful and courteous attitude.
4. Changing Providers Without Identifying The Real Problem
Changing IT outsourcing providers often happen as companies grow and need better, more specialized support. But it can be tricky if the company isn’t sure what’s wrong with its current provider.
Outsourcing IT services is all about ensuring that your business stays focused on its core competencies while outsourcing non-core functions to other qualified providers who specialize in them. This means that before you decide to change providers, you need to identify the core problem so you can find a solution.
Companies should also keep in mind that they need to work hand in hand with their provider to find the best solution, making the whole endeavor successful.
5. Hiring The Cheapest Option
Often, the lowest price isn’t a bad thing to look for, but you might be getting what you pay for. Some companies are outsourcing because they want to save a lot of money without realizing that the lowest price isn’t worth the hassle.
Frequently, when you hire a company that offers really low prices for IT support, they might also provide low-quality customer service and even worse products. In this case, you’ll end up spending more money in the long run because of all these expensive mishaps, which could’ve been prevented if only you looked into it further.
If you’re looking for a quality IT support solution, you should know that quality talents are those who are motivated and well-compensated. No one will be motivated to provide top-notch service if they’re not properly compensated. This is why you need to hire a company that provides quality customer service and pays their employees well since they may reward their employees with incentives when the job gets done right.
6. Leaving Everything To The Service Provider
It’s essential to retain some control over your business even when outsourcing IT. Some companies don’t do this, and they end up regretting it since there’s no assurance that the service provider will be running for a long item. If they shut down, what’ll happen to all the data? Thus, you want to have a contingency plan in place for those scenarios.
Remember that some service providers won’t look out for everything for you, which is why you still need to assign an in-house IT manager that’ll oversee the work. Having one will ensure that what was written in the contract will be followed, too.
Be smart and prepare yourself so when outsourcing IT goes wrong, it doesn’t turn into an even bigger problem.
7. Not Asking About The Service Provider’s Security Protocols
Be sure to ask what security protocols the service provider has in place. If you’re content with just a firewall or for your data to be encrypted before it’s sent over the network, then this question may not apply to you. However, if you have sensitive information that must remain private and want it protected by an intrusion prevention system, then this is a critical question to ask.
Since it’ll be better if you provide all of the information that the outsourced IT support company needs, you must ensure how they’re going to protect the data. The service provider should have solid security protocols to protect your sensitive information from hackers and viruses. Request this information before you decide on an outsourced IT support company.
8. Misunderstanding The Contract Terms
If you’re a first-time outsourcer, it can be challenging to understand the different contract terms typically included in an outsourcing agreement. You may not know what some of them even mean or whether they apply to your situation at all.
Understanding these details before signing is crucial. Thus, ensure that you clarify the terms that aren’t clear to you.
9. Not Setting Up An IT Support Agreement
An IT Support Agreement is a contract in which the client agrees to pay a set monthly fee for IT Support Services. This type of agreement is typically used when numerous services and maintenance agreements need to be covered by a single billing entity.
An outline should be put into place before beginning your outsourcing process. This way, you know what types of services will be included with your contracted IT support provider.
What are the most critical components of an outsourcing agreement? What should be included in your outsourced service contract to ensure all parties know how it’ll work and what they’ll receive?
The following is a list of things that you may want to include:
- Services provided by the vendor
- Technical skills required
- Service time frames
- What’s included in the scope of service?
Services that a single billing entity must cover are numerous and should include all aspects of IT support. Think about what elements you’ll want to contract out before starting your outsourcing process. To ensure everyone knows what they’re getting into, you and the service provider should have a clear understanding of the responsibilities of each party.
It’s also important to know what services aren’t covered by your outsourced service contract, including installation and configuration services, on-site visits, or monitoring systems outside of those included in the scope of work.
If you’re ready to take your project to another level but don’t want to pay for the level of work you’re getting, it may be time to reevaluate your outsourcing strategy.
While outsourcing your company’s IT support can be a great idea, it’s essential to avoid mistakes that could lead to costly consequences. Be sure you take time to find an outsourced provider who knows your industry well and has good reviews from other clients. You should also provide enough details about your needs and expectations, so there are no misunderstandings or surprises down the line.
If you want peace of mind when protecting sensitive data on critical devices, ask if they have any security protocols in place before signing up for their services. Finally, ensure to set up an IT support agreement that includes the service timeframe, the fees, and the scope of their entire service.