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Benefits of managed IT services for small businesses

As businesses grow, they'll often look to someone to sort out their IT needs – here are the top benefits of working with a managed IT partner.

The benefits of managed IT services for small businesses range from supported teams to continual improvement – a good provider will work with you to plan out exactly what you need. Let’s look at the different managed IT services available that can help your people focus on the things that they do best. 

As your business grows, your focus will be on making sure you’re in the best possible shape to take advantage of the opportunities that come – and that’s when you’ll likely start to hit hurdles with your IT systems.  

If you’ve started to feel overwhelmed by the sheer number of technical IT tasks that go into running a business, you’ve probably considered outsourcing this work to a managed IT partner. Many partners will be able to offer a wide range of managed IT services for small businesses so it’s important to find someone that ticks all the boxes that you’re looking for. 

 

What is managed IT support?

Managed IT support is when a company outsources some or all of their IT management and support to a third-party provider. Many businesses, from large multi-national enterprises all the way down to small family-run businesses, use managed IT support to streamline their IT operations, host their business-critical infrastructure, improve efficiency and free up time for other work.

The level of support you get will vary depending on the service and the partner you choose. It can range from simple helpdesk provision and problem-fixing to a broader strategic partnership that gives a more holistic view on how to use IT to meet your wider business goals.

 

Managed IT services: The advantages for small businesses

Small businesses typically have plenty of plates to keep spinning just to keep their company afloat. That means that staying on top of all their IT needs can quickly fall down the priority list. That’s why having someone take care of all of these needs for them can be so beneficial. Not only does it free up your time to focus on higher-value activities, but it also gives you the peace of mind that you’re getting the best possible service across each area.

 

Expert advice

The world of IT can feel rather confusing at times, with lots of new lingo and rapidly evolving technologies to wrap your head around. That’s why it’s important to have someone to guide you through and keep you up to date with the latest updates in the world of IT.

Not only does this give you one less thing to worry about, but it also means that you know the advice you’re getting is backed up by years of experience and know-how. The best IT experts won’t just be able to advise you on the tech itself, but also the bigger strategic picture of it can be used to meet your wider goals as a business.

 

Affordable IT support 

One of the main concerns that some companies have when it comes to outsourcing their IT is that it’s going to end up costing them loads of money. In fact, the opposite can often be true and, by trying to cut costs by doing this work in-house, businesses actually end up spending more.  

That’s because, if you have managed support, your team can spend more time focusing on their day-to-day business and strategic initiatives that drive the business forward – rather than constant IT firefighting – and you don’t need specialised IT staff or continuous training to stay up to date.  

When doing all the IT yourself, there’s also a vastly increased risk of a data breach or system failure that could end up costing you far more in the long run. 

 

The latest software 

When you’re using a number of different software packages to run your business, it can be tricky to keep on top of all the latest updates. A managed IT partner will be able to take care of this for you, making sure you’re always running the right versions of all your software. This ultimately saves you time as well, as you don’t have to worry about checking your software and installing updates.   

Not only does this give you the most up-to-date features, but it also means you’ll be better protected against cyber attacks, as criminals often look to exploit software vulnerabilities that are patched by updates. 

 

Reduced network downtime 

No matter what industry you’re working in, having your network and systems go down can be devastating. Even a brief break in uptime could make the difference in being able to fulfil an order or secure a new customer.  

A managed IT partner will be able to make sure you’re always connected when you need to be. They’ll continuously monitor your network and perform proactive maintenance to solve issues before they can cause disruption to your business. 

 

Communications 

Having fast and reliable communications both between your team and externally is crucial to being able to work efficiently. But many businesses find themselves held back by outdated and sluggish platforms, just because that’s what they’ve grown accustomed to.  

For the demanding comms needs of a growing business, a package like Microsoft Teams will be the upgrade you need to unlock that next level of productivity. A managed IT partner will be able to assess your current needs, figure out the best solutions for your business and get everything installed and set up for you.  

 

Global managed services 

Global growth is a key goal for many businesses, but without the right tech and IT support backing you up, this can be a very challenging task. Different countries all bring with them new challenges, including tax and compliance regulations, infrastructure, hosting requirements and siloed data – and that’s why global managed services are so important.

If you’ve got a managed IT partner helping you on this journey, they’ll not only be able to set you up with the technology you need to get a clearer picture of your international operations, but they’ll also be able to help give more of a strategic roadmap of how to use this technology to help drive your growth.

 

Cyber security 

Cyber attacks are a very real danger for all companies, not just big businesses. In fact, the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency reported that small businesses are three times more likely to be targeted than larger organisations. That’s largely down to the fact that the criminals know these businesses likely won’t be equipped with the sophisticated defences that could keep them out.  

These attacks can be crippling. According to the UK government’s Cyber Security Breaches Survey, the mean annual cost is estimated at £15,300 per victim, which means that businesses simply can’t afford to not take their cyber defences seriously. While you can take some steps to improve your security yourself, you need an experienced partner to set you up with a complete cyber security strategy. 

This typically involves doing a thorough assessment of your systems and the risks you face to figure out exactly what you need to combat your vulnerabilities. They’ll then get you set up with the tech you need to stay safe, including endpoint protection and managed firewalls. The other part of the strategy should involve educating your employees and empowering them to actively look out for threats. 

 

Data backup and recovery 

Data is the lifeblood of any business, and its loss can have severe consequences. That’s why it’s crucial to make sure that you do a regular, secure data backup. Backing up data means that you store a copy of your data in a secondary place, other than your main computers or servers. This could either be on a physical hard drive that’s kept separate from everything else or stored on the cloud. 

If, for whatever reason, you do lose access to your data, you need to quickly get it back so you can start working again. That’s where data recovery comes in. This is the process of restoring data that has been lost, corrupted or become inaccessible. These methods can retrieve data but are not always 100% reliable and should be used as a last resort. Instead, having everything securely backed up is always the best bet. 

 

Managed IT services with Thinc

At Thinc, we take the stress out of IT and give you all the infrastructure, software and support you need. But much more than that, we’ll work closely with you to create a tailored strategy that uses managed IT to help you meet your wider goals as a business.

Our approach is unique as don’t just focus on the tech itself, but rather how you can use it to empower your business’ most important asset – its people.

Get in touch with one of our expert consultants for a free no-obligation chat about how we can take care of your IT needs and set you up with a tech strategy that’s designed to help you grow.

 

Get in touch

To discover how we can help your small business use IT to level up the way you work, get in touch with one of our experts for a quick no-obligation chat.

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