As a small business owner, you need to be focused on your core business and not IT. Being in the Managed IT Services business and having the word 'outsourced' associated with our services, I get asked this question a lot; why don't I just hire an IT person? On the surface, you may think this is a good idea, but in reality, it is a path to frustration and a loss of productivity, let me explain…

Having worked my way up the ranks as an IT professional and later building by own IT consulting firm, I am now able to see things from both sides of the fence; one from the business, and the other from the IT professional supporting the business. I have encountered numerous situations where as an IT services provider, we have taken over IT from an in-house or part-time 'IT guy' only to find the business sitting on a ticking time bomb.

The IT professional point of view:

As an IT professional, you feed off a challenge, learning new things, and touching the latest/greatest technology on the market. If you’re a full-time IT employee within a small business, you’re going to hit the ceiling in terms of how much you are challenged. Constrained by small business IT budgets, you won’t be touching the latest and the greatest all the time. There will come a point in time where you master the environment and find yourself twiddling your thumbs most of the day.  It’s a good place to cut your teeth on, but within 12-months you’ll be looking for the next challenge/step in your career. Therefore, the longevity of having a full-time IT person for your small business is limited. There is no career path and there is a finite amount of challenge for the person to be busy and inspired.

The business point of view:

IT probably isn’t your core business, but I guarantee that it is essential in running your business. You rely upon technology on a daily basis and need to ensure things are operating smoothly. If IT is important to you, perhaps you have one full-time IT guy or someone that comes by once a month, what if this person gets sick? what if they get run over? What if they find a new job and haven't documented anything about your systems and applications. Do you realize how much risk you're sitting on? This is why an IT Support Partner provides the best Return on Investment and Return on Energy. You eliminate the single point of failure of having one guy, you get a full-team of technical gurus but also IT Director-level staff that can help you with IT  budgets and IT strategy/planning. You get people that work with dozens of businesses your size and even in the same industry and are introduced to new technology and platforms that can help take your business to the next level.

Instead of becoming distracted with IT and trying to build an IT department, look to partner with an IT Support firm that can become your top-to-bottom IT department, not just your ‘IT guy’. There is tremendous value in subscribing to a monthly fixed-fee Managed IT Services agreement as you get an enterprise-grade IT department at a fraction of the cost, Service Level Agreements with guaranteed response times, in-depth monthly reporting so you know what's going on, and a long-term partner that is interested in forming a true business relationship.

If you want to learn more about how Nucleus can help your business, please connect with us as we're always looking to work with new partners.

- Martin DesRosiers, VP of Strategy