IT has changed over the years. No longer is one solution viable for every business and situation. We at Rented Apps have collated a list of the pros and cons of each approach to sourcing your IT. No business is the same and each pro and con may feel more or less important depending on the needs of the business and the end users. Some businesses may even find themselves using a combination of all three. Below is a list of the pros and cons of each approach:
Outsourced IT Support
- Specialist can be focused on the task at hand specifically
- Less need to invest in equipment and software
- Ideal for very specialist tasks with less training needed
- Complacency is minimal
- Freelance IT operative can charge at a much higher rate than someone in-house
- Can be difficult and/or time consuming to find the right specialist
- Sometimes it’s unclear what to look for
- Agency fees should be considered
- Trust is always an issue
Inhouse IT Team/ Individual
- Cost control as regardless of the task, the salary will mostly be the same
- They will know the systems well
- More trustworthy and familiar
- Reporting back from the employee is easier
- Feedback is more easily accepted as it is part of being employed
- Costs can end up getting high if several specialisms are needed
- Holidays and sickness are always a factor
- Investment is needed in the training of staff
- A specialist suddenly leaving can leave a large hole in the business
Hosted Desktop Platform
- Access is available anywhere there is internet
- Fully encrypted
- Sensitive data never leaves the data centre
- Can create uniformity with control over installed software, updates etc
- Easy to scale up or down
- No need to purchase any more expensive hardware
- Saves office space with less hardware required
- Internet connection is always required, and speed of the desktop effects productivity
- Anything that is graphically-intensive can be detrimental to other users
- IT management is more specialist and requires knowledge
So what is the outcome? To summarise, from everything we’ve seen, if you can easily justify the staff costs in an internal IT team it’s fair to say you’re either a larger SME or Corporate. The team should still be working on a hosted desktop platform as that’s the way forward however having a team to hand is a must for this size of company. On the flip side, for those companies who have someone who looks after the IT and don’t need to be too mobile, then unless it’s rather niche software being used or there is a genuine need for someone to be there, it might not be the best use of company funds. In our experience, if you only have one person looking after IT in the company, having a ‘pay-as-you-go’ type setup with an outsourced IT company who have documented all processes and procedures (should the IT person ever leave) then you will have peace of mind. Plus the IT support team will have all the knowledge to help make small budget friendly changes that could make a big impact – they’ll be hungry to help and show their worth.
Outsourced IT companies as a whole do overlap with Hosted Desktop platform providers because the goal is almost the same – keep you efficient, secure and minimise downtime. The difference is you may get a little more face-time with outsourced IT Support if they are local so that may be a positive factor. For those who are keen on keeping all their data ‘in-house’ that benchmark has changed because if you’re on Office 365 for example, you’re in the cloud. Outsourced IT fits in the 5 – 250 employees bracket and suits those who are relatively autonomous however want the backup of having someone available should they be needed. Also, with the hardware side, as the bigger the infrastructure the more knowledge of how best to run everything, this is where outsourced IT support can be very helpful to keep you running.
Hosted Desktop platforms are like Outsourced IT 2.0. Suited to companies who are, or would benefit from, having employees who are mobile and happy to use their own devices as well as company provided ones. Logging onto a secure platform from these devices and leveraging the strength of the data centre hardware means servers and space-taking desktops are a thing of the past. It also means those relatively slow laptops you have, are suddenly all powerful. Adding additional ‘thin’ clients are cheaper than new laptops and the security is second to none. As the payments are monthly per user, and only what has been used is charged, hosted desktops are cheaper than Outsourced IT in a like for like study and inhouse IT teams would (and do) benefit from being run from the hosted platform.
The times have clearly changed, communication is quicker and easier than ever before so if you’re a business owner wanting a progressive approach to IT, then it’s not a case of which option should you go for, it’s when should you move to a hosted desktop environment.
For a free 30-day trial so you can see it yourself, click here and let us know when the best time to get in touch us or phone us on 0844 811 1105.