4 Risks of Outsourcing IT Services and How to Minimise Them

Tim Hall, Head of Innovation

Outsourcing IT allows you to focus your efforts on top-level tasks and spend less time stuck in meetings or dealing with the email server failing (again). But, we know that handing over control of any part of your business to a third-party is something you’re going to have concerns about.

That’s why we’ve put together some of the most common worries we hear from our clients when they’re considering outsourcing their IT. Plus, how you can minimise those risks.

The Possible Risks or Concerns When Outsourcing Your Business’ IT

Possible Hidden Costs

You can reduce the chance of facing any hidden costs by making sure you have an absolutely water-tight SLA. Without taking a detailed look at your would-be MSP’s terms and conditions, you might not realise that there’s a cap on the number of support tickets you can raise.

The last thing you want is an issue not being dealt with because you've reached a limit of support tickets you weren't even aware of that was hidden away in the small print, leaving your environment at risk and the business financially worse off.

Solution: Take the time to check that an MSP’s terms and conditions won’t prevent them from always making sure you have a durable and reliable IT environment, without charging you extra for it. The right partner will be interested in reducing the number of support tickets that are raised and guarantee that you have to deal with as little downtime as possible.

They should be honest and transparent, taking the time to get to know the ins and outs of your business and what’s important to you.

Will an MSP Know and Understand My Business?

You aren’t just looking for an IT provider, you need a partner that can get to know your business and offer recommendations on how you can improve your current IT infrastructure.

It might be that your business relies on bespoke applications and specific modifications that are tailored just for you. They need to know who uses these apps, what they’re needed for on a day-to-day basis and who’s most affected if something goes wrong. Does an MSP have the skills and knowledge to manage your needs effectively and deal with your bespoke apps?

Solution: When you’re considering possible MSPs, see if they’re able to provide support for all of your bespoke solutions. Can they manage your specific requirements? If the answer is no because your solution is too unique, then are they honest and even willing to upskill themselves?

BCN Group knows that your business might rely on applications that have been tailored to your needs and we’re open and transparent if we don’t support them. Having said that, our specialists work hard to understand how you operate and upskill your current team if necessary. This bridges any gaps in knowledge and eases the burden on the team’s managers.

Meeting Expectations of SLAs

SLA agreements can mean different things from one provider to the next. It’s vital that you know exactly who will be accountable for what to avoid any possible downtime or breakdowns in communication. Grey areas, such as on-site and remote response times, can leave you exposed and disappointed.

A challenge you might face is how the MSP intends to report on the expectations set out by the SLA. They should be clear and open about their performance so that you know if any changes need to be made.

Solution: Before the SLA is signed, ask any would-be MSPs about what they’ll be accountable for and how they plan to share their KPIs. Keeping track of ticket volumes and security breaches over time is a good place to start.

Regular reports should clearly outline if and how the partnership is working and if you’re receiving the level of service you should be.  

Basic Logistical Issues That Can Cause Serious Problems

When you choose an MSP, there’s always a risk of them overpromising and under-delivering.

For example, if their base is six hours away but they’ve promised much faster response times, then it’ll be left to you to get everything back up and running until they can get to you. When they do arrive, do they have what they need to fix the issue?

Solution: It may seem obvious but you need a partner that’s completely transparent with their services and physically capable of meeting your specific requirements. This includes something as simple as how quickly they’ll get to you when there’s a critical issue.

At BCN Group, we don’t over promise anything. If we genuinely believe we can’t help a business to the best of our ability and we feel that we’re not right for them, then we know the right thing to do is to advise them to go elsewhere.

Choosing an MSP That’s Right for Your Business

Outsource your IT and focus on what’s important to your business. You’ll have the tools and resources needed to maintain a healthy infrastructure and keep up with the rapidly changing IT landscape. All without relinquishing control and whilst being given back time in your diary.

To learn more about outsourcing your IT, download our free guide below.BCN Group Benefits Of Outsourcing Guide CTA

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