Should I Outsource My IT Department?

The answer to “should I outsource my business’ IT?” isn’t always an obvious “yes” or “no.” There are a multitude of factors to consider, and the size and nature of your business certainly may dictate what makes sense for you.

Let’s first look at some of the possible benefits of IT outsourcing:

  • If technology isn’t really in your wheelhouse, then outsourcing IT allows you to be able to focus on what is - your business! Instead of being bogged down by issues that are outside your area of expertise, you can prioritize your customers, products, services, etc.
  • It’s not always easy to find “the right” talent, and it can be a time-consuming process. If you outsource, it’s no longer your responsibility to find specifically skilled, highly sought after resources. Filling gaps in your IT needs can be accomplished a lot more efficiently when a third party manages your IT.
  • Generally speaking, outsourcing IT should provide you with better IT and access to the latest technologies. Your IT provider should live and breathe technology, so your staff doesn’t have to.
  • Although it may not be true for every company, outsourcing IT services often reduces overall business costs.

You might be thinking, “sign me up!” after reading the points above, but you should also weigh the possible disadvantages of outsourcing IT:

  • By outsourcing your IT, you increase your dependence on an external organization, i.e., you may lose (some) control, i.e., IT direction, software/hardware choices, quality control, etc.
  • Will “outsiders” be able to understand your specific business needs? And even if they do, can they provide tailored solutions? This point may be critical if you’re in a niche market and have unique needs.
  • Miscommunication – it’s bound to happen from time to time, but should be minimized where possible. Bringing in a third party does open the door for the possibility of more miscommunication, especially if there isn’t scheduled, frequent communication between parties.

Remember, you don’t have to be “all in” on outsourcing your IT. Maybe it makes sense to continue to manage a few things inhouse and turn over specific areas to a provider. It’s important to find a provider who wants to work with you, however that may look. Ultimately, it is up to business leaders to find the balance between costs, risks, and added value. If you’re interested in having a conversation about outsourcing your IT, we would be happy to learn more about your business and technology needs.