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Outsourcing Your Business IT Department: The Advantages and Disadvantages

The digital age requires digital solutions. Businesses that aspire to grow in the highly-competitive landscape must have a firm and effective Information Technology (IT) Department. Their role is vital for the success of businesses and corporations that employ them. It is in charge of the establishments’ hardware, software, and networking infrastructure. This department also develops the businesses’ automation capacity, computer systems, and operational units.

As your business continues to expand and succeed, you need to intensify your IT capacity to maximize your growth. One effective way to do so is to outsource your IT department to perform a wide array of tasks, such as IT strategy, technology assessment, network administration, IT security and threat prevention, installation, cloud computing, and IT management.

            Outsourcing your business IT department brings so much potential to your establishment, but there are possible drawbacks that you can effectively solve.

Advantages of outsourcing

            Maximum availability. If you employ a team of IT professionals in your business or company, you are compelled to let them have frequent breaks, especially during holidays and emergencies. You are also prone to interruptions and disruptions since you are responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of your IT facilities. But respected IT firms can provide 24/7 access and support, smooth operations, and premium equipment that comes with their experience and reputation.

            It saves time and effort. IT departments require great attention and care. You need to hire effective employees, decide about business technology, and deliberate costs and upgrades. If you outsource your business IT, you can be freed from these imminent concerns and maximize your time and energy. Then, you can all the more face the expansion of your business and reach.

            Access to more talented and experienced IT specialists. Outsourced IT firms are much more aware and knowledgeable about business technology. Doing so also helps you tap into their certified and qualified workforce with the latest technology. By hiring them, you will benefit from their specialty and technical experience in the industry.

            Flexibility. The needs of IT departments grow as the business progresses. Outsourced IT firms can rapidly adapt based on your requirements and expansion. Working with such firms also increases the capabilities of your human resources department and realigns the talent pool in your business. Moreover, you can stay focused on the priorities of your establishment.

            Less hiring and lower labor costs. If you own a small or middle-sized business, establishing an IT department can grow into a heavy burden. You have to pay for more salaries, hardware maintenance, software license fees, subscriptions, and repair costs. Hiring new IT employees also entails training and rookie errors. If you outsource your business IT, however, you will only pay as a contractor, and the firm will handle the rest. This is the reason why over 300,000 positions are outsourced by the United States annually, according to Forbes.

 Greater security. Now that the market grows ever dependent on the Internet, hackers are cybercriminals seek to victimize businesses. If your in-house IT department does not specialize in cybersecurity (not to mention the expenses and expertise required by security compliance), your establishment is at great risk. Outsourced IT firms guarantee advanced security measures and capabilities to protect your sensitive digital data and assets.

Trusted partnerships. Working with reputable and successful IT firms helps you gain more insight into commerce in the digital age. Their support for your business will let you thrive further.

Disadvantages of outsourcing

            Lack of control. Compared to hiring an in-house IT department, outsourcing to firms requires giving up strict control on the output. You can instruct them about your vision and goals in the projects or tasks, but you have less power over them. It might be harder to achieve the results that you imagine. But this is not a problem as long as you employ a respected and excellent IT firm. Make sure to sign a deal with an outsourcing company that has an exemplary track record and quality of work.  

            Different cultures and languages. Outsourcing tasks and positions overseas can pose challenges to communication and task delivery. The company might be employing IT workers who cannot speak in English (or the language you are comfortable using). Cultural nuances and practices might affect their work ethics or eventual output. Hence, you should work with an IT firm that observes professionalism with proficiency in the language you use.

            Instability. Linked with a lack of control is the uncertainty outsourcing might bring. The IT firm you work with might go bankrupt or out of business. This factor highlights the importance of hiring a competent outsourcing company. Also, you have to fully understand the terms and conditions in your contract to ensure that you will not be adversely impacted should they fail.

            Effects on company culture. We may have direct control over the performance of the business, but employees who work for us have unique feelings, attitudes, and opinions. They might get upset and confused as you outsource the IT department and other positions. The workers might also need to adjust as you change the workflow in your business. However, this can be solved through proactive and effective communication in your workforce. Given the advantages of outsourcing, you can make them understand that the success and expansion it brings will benefit their lives. Discussing this decision with them can help them cope as well.

            Slight public backlash, depending on the political climate in the country. In the United States, outsourcing and immigration are controversial and debated issues. Some of your customers might have beliefs or views that disfavor outsourcing. But, in reality, criticisms are inevitable in the world of business. As long as you care for your employees as much as you can and do not break moral or ethical standards, you can look ahead and fulfill your plans for your business.

            Now that you have both the advantages and disadvantages of outsourcing IT technology, you can strategize and make the step forward for your business. 

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