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To Outsource IT Services or Not? 8 Reasons a Business Should Outsource IT

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article |outsource IT|To Outsource IT Services or Not? 8 Reasons a Business Should Outsource ITOutsourcing has become a standard part of business today. If you’re looking for a function to start with, there’s no better option than IT. It’s the most commonly outsourced position in the business world.

Do you want to learn more about what benefits you will get when you outsource IT? Keep reading to learn eight reasons why working with a managed services provider is worth trying.

1. Save Money

It isn’t a cheap process to hire a new employee. You have the cost of sending out job postings and the cost of spending time in interviews. Even after all that work, there’s no guarantee that you find the right person for the job.

Then you have the cost of a salary. One employee is expensive enough. If you have a lot of IT needs, your entire IT budget can go up by a lot.

You can save a lot of money by working with a managed services provider. You only pay a retainer based on the needs of your business.

2. Focus on Your Core Business

Getting the things done that you’re good at is challenging enough at times. If you decide to manage an IT team yourself, you’re going to run the risk of spreading yourself too thin.

By working with a managed services provider for your IT needs, you can keep your focus on your core business. They will handle the planning and hiring for your company. The only thing you need to do is approve what they want to do.

3. Secure Your Business Online

If you haven’t been following the news, you probably aren’t aware of all the recent data breaches. Even large companies are getting compromised. Nobody is immune from cyberattacks.

You must protect your business from these types of attacks. The bare minimum isn’t going to cover you.
When you work with an IT provider that has a security expert, they can help you put an internet security system in place to protect your company network. It will watch your network at all times and block anything that shouldn’t be there.

4. Backup Your Data

You can’t afford to lose your data in the data-driven world we live in today. Your data is what allows you to make the most informed business decisions. Without it, you’re going to be going into things blind.

Unfortunately, you aren’t going to know ahead of time when an accident will happen. It’s vital to have a backup system in place for when this happens.

Your managed services provider will help put a backup system in place that will do backups regularly. If you do ever lose data, all you need to do is log into your backup system and restore your lost data.

5. Get Help With Compliance

You need to handle a lot of regulations and compliance issues in business today. Consumers won’t stand for companies taking shortcuts anymore. The problem is, it can be hard to keep up with everything you need to do.
Being compliant is even more critical when you deal with technology. You’ll need to invest a lot of resources for staying up to code. An IT company can help you do that.

If you work with a provider that is experienced in your industry, you can count on them to know all the regulations your business needs to follow. They will audit your business to make sure there are no problems that can get you in trouble. After they find the issues, they can start getting them fixed for you.

6. Find Vendor Support

You work with a lot of hardware and software companies to keep your business running smoothly. Things work well most of the time. However, you can run into problems if something you use breaks.

If you don’t have reliable IT support, you’re going to spend a lot of time digging through your contacts to figure out who you need to call. Once you find the right person, it’s a matter of finding the right questions to ask. If you don’t have a background in tech, this can be a complicated process.

Your managed services provider can handle this process for you. They already have relationships with all the prominent vendors in the tech industry. They’ll be able to track down someone to fix your problem and get things fixed before you know it.

7. Scale Your IT Team

It’s hard to grow a team when your business is unpredictable. Sure, hiring people will save you in the short-term, but then you have to find something for them to do when business calms down.

You’ll either need to create new positions for the people who don’t have things to do or start laying people off. Either way, it will create frustration for you and your team.

If you use a managed services provider, you can use them to supplement your team during busy times and not need to worry about what to do when work returns to normal.

8. Get Access to Experts

Technology is making its way to every part of business. The problem is, hiring the experts to help your business use this technology isn’t cheap.

If you use an IT provider, they can provide you the access to the experts you need. They have done the work of finding the top talent in the field. If you need help with something, all you need to do is reach out to your provider, and they will send the person you need over.

You’ll be able to work with people who know big data, A.I., and how to set up remote working capabilities.

Things Get Better When You Outsource IT

Don’t underestimate the benefits you’ll see when you outsource IT. Working with a professional IT business will help you get the infrastructure you need while being able to focus on your core business. Talk to someone today to figure out what they can do for your business.

If you’re looking for more tips that will help your company succeed, go back to our blog and read our latest posts. They will help you figure out ways to take your business to the next level.

Freelance Career Taking Off? Three Strategies You’ll Definitely Need

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article |Freelance|Freelance Career Taking Off? Three Strategies You'll Definitely NeedIf your freelancing business is growing fast, you may be starting to think about hiring more people, and even asking questions about outsourcing. And that’s not a bad idea. A period of growth can be thrilling for a freelancer. That said, it can also pose significant challenges if you find yourself unable to cope with the uptick in demand, as well as the increasing complexity that comes with becoming a larger operation.

But that’s no reason to feel intimidated. These tips will help you anticipate some of the most common pitfalls of rapid growth for freelancers, and put measures in place to avoid them.

Manage Your Cash Flow

When you had just started your business, you may have been able to manage your accounts without too much confusion. But expansion brings more clients and staggered projects on different timelines, both of which contribute to a vastly more complex cashflow system. Cash flow can be a bit like dominoes: letting one piece fall can quickly result in the whole system collapsing. With that in mind, it makes sense to invest in freelancer accounting tools to help you keep your ducks in a row.

Goodbye, Home Office

Launching your freelancing business from home makes sense on so many levels. You have no overheads, you can work whenever you want, and you can control your environment to avoid distractions.

But once your business starts to grow, you may start to feel like your home office is holding you back. Unless you live in a very central location, you may not be able to make it to important meetings with clients at short notice, so you could be missing out on opportunities for expansion. (And if you do commute in to meet with clients, where will you meet them? A Starbucks? How unprofessional does that look!) And how are you supposed to grow your team if you don’t have opportunities to meet like minded people? Working in isolation means you miss out on networking opportunities, which could be costing you more business than your thrifty home office is saving you per month. In other words, working from home has started to cost you money.

Time to get out of the house. That’s not to say you need to lease your own office. A coworking space could provide the central location and networking events you need to boost your business, without the upfront financial commitment or high rent.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article |Freelance|Freelance Career Taking Off? Three Strategies You'll Definitely NeedBe the Boss of Your Taxes

The bigger your business gets, and the more people are involved, the more complicated your tax situation becomes. There are decisions to be made about how you present yourself legally, like whether you want to incorporate or remain as an individual trader. And there’s nothing more detrimental to a business than falling behind or defaulting on your taxes simply because of a lack of organization and foresight. If your business is starting to grow, it makes sense to sit down with an accountant and get your head around your tax obligations, making sure you tick all the right boxes and stay fully above board.

Whether you’re a copywriter, web designer or social media manager, your freelance business will go through some significant changes once you start to gather momentum. These tips will help you avoid the speed wobbles that this exciting period of growth could bring.

Eight Tasks To Outsource When Running A Small Business

All entrepreneurs should know how valuable time is. When you waste it, you put a strain on the entire business. Anyone starting a new venture understandably wants to be active in every aspect of the company. However, trying to do everything yourself, especially when you’re not qualified, is risky. Even if you avoid making mistakes, success will take longer and cost more to achieve. Because of this, every business should outsource. Not only is this cheaper, but it causes less hassle. With that in mind, here are eight tasks to outsource in small business.

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | Entrepreneurship | Eight Tasks To Outsource When Running A Small Business

1. Employee Training

Outsourcing in business doesn’t have to mean giving up employees entirely. Certain tasks are much better performed in-house. However, if you insist on having employees, you must provide the proper training. Having inexperienced workers in your business can cause many problems. Untrained staff members are dangerous, but wasteful too. Thankfully, you can outsource the training of your team to an expert, which avoids any problems and ensures the task is done well.

2. Market Research

Before making any changes in business, you must conduct market research. After all, you don’t want the changes that you make to put current or potential customers off. Marketing research is also essential in learning about competitors and customers. While market research seems relatively simple, many businesses make mistakes that lead to incorrect results. Outsourcing to an expert is recommended because third-party companies can provide entirely objective data.

3. Receptionist Duties

Most people start a business to make a difference. Unfortunately, that will be difficult to do when you’re chained to a phone all day. The good news is, you can outsource many receptionist duties, including answering phone calls. Many answering services, like the Ivy answering service, offer value for money by providing you with experienced and professional virtual receptionists. What’s more, you aren’t stuck in a contract, so you can change the service to suit your needs.

4. Website Design

A website is a powerful digital marketing tool for any small business. Even if you don’t intend to sell online, you should still have a company website to connect with customers and raise brand awareness. Unless you have web design experts in-house, you must bring in professional help. The only problem worse than having no website is having an unprofessional one. Rather than choosing the first design company you find, therefore, you must research to find the best one.

5. Content Creation

No website in today’s market is complete without a blog. Most company websites use blogs to educate customers and clients about what the business does. Blog content can also optimize websites for search engines and attract more customers. The trouble is, producing and publishing content that converts will take time. For this reason, many companies outsource the task to freelancers. Although this isn’t free, the rewards of doing so far outweigh any expenses.

6. Inventory Management

All businesses typically begin with a small and manageable inventory. With so few units to keep track of, you can manage your stock on a simple spreadsheet. However, with any luck, your marketing campaigns will pay off. When that happens, the orders will multiply, which will make inventory management much harder. Rather than risk losing stock, you must minimize shrinkage by outsourcing this task. Doing so will reduce operating and staffing expenses, among others.

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7. Customer Support

Unless you’re sure you have enough time to handle customer support, you shouldn’t be doing it. Customer service is perhaps the most important aspect of business. After all, without loyal customers, your company wouldn’t stay afloat. Outsourcing customer support will ensure that you have access to any resources necessary to provide excellent service. Unlike in-house customer service, you will also have the capacity to expand quickly and support efficient growth.

8. Tax Planning

Money keeps the business world alive. While there are many reasons why a business might fail, all those reasons typically boil down to lack of capital. Because of this, you must take care with accounting tasks, like tax planning. Even a small mistake can cause huge problems for your business. Entrepreneurs can save money and hours every week by using an outsourced bookkeeper. What’s more, you will have peace of mind that your finances are in trained hands.

When done the right way, outsourcing in business will save money, time, and plenty of hassle. Rather than taking on every area of business yourself, you should hand over certain tasks to the experts. Hopefully, with the advice above, you have an idea of which tasks to start with.

How 21st-Century Solutions Could Save Your Business

Owning a business nowadays can be a struggle. It can cause stress, worry and be a financial burden. Today we are going to be looking at how you can alleviate some of those daily stresses just by updating some of the ways you do things.

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | How 21st-Century Solutions Could Save Your Business

Outsource

Trying to do everything yourself is something every entrepreneur is guilty of. The result is always the same, exhaustion and burn out which results in a very moody boss.

The solution to this has been made ever more available, especially over the last 10 years. Outsourcing no longer has to be an outside consultant, prancing his way around your offices telling you what you should do.

It is now a fantastic option when it comes to adapting to survive. The key to succeeding in business is simple, it’s all about cash flow. So you can save some money, that’s perfect, right?

You can have your leading expenses outsourced and have all of your IT solutions dealt with from an outside company. You can even have a company operate a customer service solution for you. These companies are great and over the space of twelve months, they can save you an average of around 60% on what you would generally be spending on a salary.

Cloud

The cloud has become one of the most valuable tools we can use as business people. It can offer so many solutions.

Most people still think of the cloud as just a space for storage. In reality, it is so much more. Nowadays we can have cloud-based bespoke customer management systems that we can access on an international level. We have access to cloud-based accounting systems that allow us to manage international finances all in one place. We even have companies like SimplyClouds that will allow us all in one license service on our software.

Turning to the cloud can not just help you as a business, as far as 21st-century solutions go, you should be utilizing it at every turn. It will allow you to operate from anywhere in the world, at any time.

Should you be looking to expand, all of your data is in one place and easy to duplicate to a second or even third location.

Social Media

Gone are the days of expensive, bank-breaking advertizing campaigns. You now have the power of social media at your fingertips.

Social media is so much more important than you think. If we go back 20 years, it would cost huge rates just to reach a few thousand people. Now, with a little bit of knowledge and the right campaign, we can hit millions overnight.

Companies have built their reputation built on nothing more than Facebook videos, vines, and Youtube videos. The perfect thing about these videos, they not only cost nothing, given the right amount of hits, but the videos also start to bring in revenue for you.

Although it is a tough market to hit, you should consider approaching a social media mogul who can push your campaign. One thing you should not do is ignore the power of social media, it could be your winning move.

Why You Should Consider Outsourcing for Your Business

The key to working harder is to work smarter. Your business depends on you being able to do what you do best without being bogged down by the day to day tasks that can take up some time. Running your business automatically means you have a lot on your plate to manage meaning multi-tasking is the name of the game.

StrategyDriven Tactical Execution Article | Why You Should Consider Outsourcing for Your Business

But when it comes to the task in hand, you want to make sure your time and focus is where it needs to be and you aren’t tied up with tasks that take up too much of your day and pulling your attention elsewhere.

This is where outsourcing comes in. Regardless of if you have a team working with you or not, there are many advantages in hiring a third party to take care of tasks for you so you know you are getting the job done and done well. So what should you be looking at outsourcing?

Employees.

More specifically, the hiring of employees. you need to make sure you have the right people for your company, however, if you don’t have the time or expertise in interviewing and sifting through CVs, you may find outsourcing this task to a reputable company such as Checkr could be beneficial to you and your business.

Social Media

There is no denying that social is a huge marketing tool for almost every business. That being said, it takes up a vast amount of time to promote your business and create content to attract and engage potential customers across many different platforms. Hiring outside of your company means that not only do you not have to train a staff member or create a department to take from this for you, but you benefit from qualified professionals to be able to manage all of the content creation and promotion too.

Technology Services.

It can be expensive to make sure you are up to date with the latest technology services available. Even more expensive to keep a member of staff on-site to deal with any issues. Taking up a managed technology services package from an industry expert is one less thing you have to worry about maintaining for your business. Take advantage of their expertise and knowledge to keep you up and running at all times and not just when something goes wrong.

Administration

Think of replying to emails, following up on leads, enquires to scout for new business. Maybe you need business meetings transcribing or notes inputting into online files. All of this is something you could potentially hire a Virtual Assistant for.

Virtual Assistant work from remote locations and each one has a different set of skills. Once you find someone who can benefit your company you can work out a package that benefits you and your business with this then freeing your time to focus on areas you need to.

These are just a few areas where you can work smarter to help grow your business and meet your growing demands without pulling yourself in too many directions.