In general, hiring the wrong person for any job comes with regrets later on. While the reasons for recruiting and the circumstances surrounding the entire hiring process may be different, the fact is a bad hire means terrible business and some nonfinancial costs. In this case, we are talking about the wrong managed IT support company.
Hiring a bad IT support company is actually a high-risk move and your organization may have to pay for it later on. This is because virtually every part of running a business today has to deal with information technology. So, if your IT backbone is flawed or is poorly managed, there is a high chance the entire business will be affected.
It is not uncommon for top management executives to complain about their current IT providers and the effects on their organizations. Some of the characteristics of these mushroom IT support companies include:
- They are not proactive and not on top of things. Instead, they wait for a problem to come up before looking for a solution.
- There is a lack of a process-driven methodology for implementing and managing IT solutions for their clients.
- They have “cookie-cutter” solutions that they implement to all clients regardless of their specific needs
- A Poor Feedback System. A good IT support firm is supposed to relay relevant information to ensure proper communication and keep you up to date.
- There is broken trust due to botched projects or often and extended issues. Plus, they don’t hold themselves accountable to own the problem and make up excuses.
4 Hidden Costs of Hiring the Wrong Managed IT Support Company
1. Employee productivity and frustration from clunky, unreliable, and down systems
This is perhaps one of the most significant issues with hiring the wrong company. A wrongly outsourced IT provider makes it difficult for your employees to carry out their duties effectively, and inevitably, it results in poor service delivery.
Moreover, there are associated costs with system downtimes or when systems are performing below their optimal levels.
While there are many variables to calculate the exact cost for your business, think that whenever it takes employees longer to do their jobs (or can’t do them at all), at the very minimum you are still having to pay for labor costs, not to mention lost sales if the employees affected are directly tied to revenue-generating activities.
Just as a point of reference, research company Gartner calculated in 2014 that the average cost of IT downtime is $5,600 per minute.
This is where having a proactive managed IT company is crucial. While technology is bound to fail every once in a while, a proactive provider is better at anticipating these scenarios and help you set up an adequate business continuity and disaster recovery plan.
2. Poor customer and employee experience
We’ve already established the fact that a slow or inefficient system makes it a tiring experience for the employee to work with. The inefficiency of the system transfers to the employees because they are not able to do their jobs to the best of their ability, hence thwarting the goals of the employees as well as of the employers.
The customers are not left out as they also get a taste of what the employees are going through. In effect, your organization can lose some of its customers due to the poor service delivery and frustrating customer experience.
A poor IT support company makes it hard for not only your customers but also for your employees to work. The unreliable IT infrastructure leads to a bad customer experience, which is not suitable for business.
3. Wasted money from “Band-Aid” IT strategy
Quick-fix strategies may solve a problem immediately, but the issues can resurface. This means your business may have to spend money every time on a particular problem simply because of a bad IT strategy, rather than having a well put together IT plan and budget to serve as road map.
4. High risk of data breaches when there is no adequate, layered cybersecurity strategy
It is much easier for your business to get hacked when the underlying IT infrastructure and processes is weak security-wise. An IT strategy designed to minimize the risk of a breach needs to have multiple layers of security tools to ensure your company’s data are secure and safe. Examples of these are firewalls, regular software updates, email security, VPNs, DNS-level protection, malware/virus protection, password management, and security awareness training.
So, what is the solution?
When hiring the services of an IT support company, the following are some of the things to look out for.
The IT provider should be known for being proactive.
Proactive IT providers use tools and processes to help maintain healthy systems and anticipate issues before they arise. They usually have a multi-level process, spending time upfront documenting a client’s infrastructure, implementing and maintaining best practices, and creating a business-level IT plan. You may find that many companies out there promote themselves as proactive, so don’t be shy to ask for them to show you what their process looks like in more detail.
The company should be reputable.
Just like with any other vendor, the reputation and track record of a good managed IT support company will help you anticipate whether they are what you’re looking for. Don’t be afraid to ask for references early in the process.
Pricing is usually an indicator.
Just like anything else in life, you get what you pay for. Often when IT companies offer markedly lower prices, it usually means a reactive vendor that focuses on just fixing problems. Also, companies that price their service on an hourly basis means that they only make money when your IT doesn’t work. Look for companies that charge clients a fixed monthly per user fee, which gives them an incentive to work up front to prevent issues.
From poor customer experience to insecure IT systems, reduced employee productivity and lower revenue, there are many hidden costs associated with hiring a wrongly managed outsourced IT company.
All in all, it will do you and your company no good if you try to cut costs by hiring a bad IT support company that doesn’t have well-established processes to manage your IT infrastructure proactively.
If your business is looking for a proactive, process-driven and security-focused company, look no further than Envision Consulting. In 20 years working with small and midsized organizations, our team of experts has developed a multi-layered process designed to bring best practices to your IT infrastructure, helping your business grow and thrive.