Even the smallest of businesses run on a computer network – desktop computers in the office, tablets and mobile devices in the field, and essential business applications running off cloud services. These business tools are depended on every day to run the business, track important data, and properly serve our customers, yet information security continues to be an afterthought for many businesses. When it comes to our computers, we prefer a “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” approach. But just like brushing your teeth daily goes a long way to preventing much more serious issues, maintaining your computer equipment and applications right along can effectively prevent much more damaging problems down the road. Problems that would otherwise bring your business to a halt, and cost you a lot of money, can be avoided by adding the fairly simple step of ongoing IT network maintenance. But who has time?! And what if you don’t have the cashflow to hire an IT manager? Fortunately, there is a cost-effective approach – Managed IT Services.
Outsourcing your IT needs to an experienced IT professional means all aspects of your computer network, its individual devices and applications, are looked after and maintained for a fixed monthly rate. You get reliability and security, at a fraction of the cost of hiring an internal staff member. Basically, you rent out an IT department!
Here’s what Managed IT Services will do for your business:
Regular, Consistence Maintenance
Computer hardware and software, including cloud services, have to stay up to date. This isn’t about purchasing the latest equipment, but keeping all your current network devices and applications installed with the latest security patches, software updates, and bug fixes. When your computer network is fully updated, it runs more smoothly and the business is better protected, giving you the reliability and security a business must have. Fixing a system after it breaks is expensive, disruptive to business operations, and can impact customer confidence in your business. Managed Services help a business avoid these risks.
Business down-time and data breaches can be catastrophic and very costly. Every system on the Internet, no matter how small, is a target for hackers, ransomware, and data breach. Many hacks and cyber-attacks enter due to unapplied patches and ignored updates. Keeping a network safe is challenging because of all the potential access points, and the daily changing landscape of cyber threats. With Managed IT Services, you have the advantage of full-time experts working for you. Managed IT Services also takes care of data configuration and data management. A well-configured network uses its resources more efficiently, and gives access to the appropriate people. Managed services can provide spam protection, software patches, security software, and monitoring to protect your system investment.
Losing your business data because of a system failure, physical loss, or cyber attack can have devastating consequences. Your Managed IT Services professional will put a protocol in place to consistently backup your data, perform regular backup audits, and maintain encryption of sensitive data. Data files can be restored quickly if anything is accidentally or maliciously lost, keeping downtime to a minimum.
More Work, Less Headaches
When you team up with an IT professional, you get the multiple resources of someone who works in business IT full-time, so IT issues are resolved much faster, and with less frustration for internal staff. No more searching for the one member of the company who “understands computers” and has become your fix-it person. When it comes time to upgrade equipment, you have an expert to help you vet new hardware, software, and cloud solutions. You essentially have a Help Desk where you can ask questions and access any number of IT related needs from someone who accesses the latest information on a daily basis, and has expertise from numerous business IT experiences.
Back to the analogy of renting an IT department. Managed IT Services lets you share the cost of an IT department with other businesses, while you still get the expertise needed to keep your systems running smoothly. With Managed IT, most of your costs are predictable, “break-fix” repairs are usually cheaper, and recovering from any computer problems is much faster. Having to react to a computer system disruption unprepared can be very expensive – both in direct costs and downtime. If a breach effects your customer’s personal data, the cost is even greater in the form of consumer trust and loyalty. Your computer system puts your business’ reputation on the line – so what is it really worth to have it be dependable and secure?
Don’t Cloud Services relieve the need for an “IT guy”?
It is expected that 78% of small businesses will be using primarily cloud-based services by 2020. With our data living in the cloud, and our accounts supported by the cloud services manufacturers, what is the need for having your own IT professional on hand?
There are many reasons:
- Your IT still requires ongoing compliance, regulations, data storage protocols, and antivirus security monitoring and maintenance.
- You still need to have your sensitive data encrypted and protocols maintained regarding data access.
- You still have physical computer equipment that requires maintenance, updates and replacement.
- You still have individual devices to be managed and secured.
- You still need backup and security monitoring of your overall network.
How Information Systems of Maine can Help
Information Systems of Maine’s Managed Services are a reliable and cost-effective way for you to keep your computers running smoothly and your data protected. You will get ongoing technical support without the cost of hiring a staff member. We use business-grade software for security, antivirus, and backups, and run reports that alert us when data may be at risk, computer updates are out of date, or hardware faces potential issues. By consistently monitoring and maintaining your business devices so they are in good working order today, you know you can dependable on them tomorrow.
We provide you with peace of mind, implemented at a monthly fee, similar to the fees you pay for accounting, marketing services, etc. Your technology is a component of your business that needs service and maintenance in order to get work done quickly and efficiently. We believe Managed IT Services pay for themselves in increased productivity, and system and data availability!