Many companies have considered outsourcing some business functions, primarily as a cost reduction or cost avoidance strategy.
Your IT support is one business function that benefits your business by being outsourced.
As technology evolves and employees change the way they work, there are many more benefits to be realized from an IT service management (ITSM) perspective.
Why Outsourced IT Support?
One advantage to outsourcing the your IT service desk functions is cost reduction.
Through partnering with an experienced and technically knowledgeable ITSM provider, you gain highly trained personnel focused on providing the best levels of service and support available.
No internal staffing or service desk software development on your part is required.
That’s only the beginning.
Outsourcing with the right partner has many advantages:
- Your in-house IT personnel are free to address strategic business-critical initiatives
- Employees have access to service desk functions 24/7
- Support is available anywhere, anytime, via any device. Bring your own device or technology (BYOD/BYOT) is a reality, rather than a long-term goal or security challenge for IT.
- Shadow IT support begins to decrease as end-users realize the level of support now available
Who Benefits from Outsourced IT Support?
It’s not only your business and the bottom line that benefits. Your people and their productivity also benefit.
Today’s workforce is changing dynamically. Research indicates that 53% of employees are not working in the primary business location.
This number includes employees working in satellite offices, your telecommuters, and offsite workers. Don’t forget field personnel, mobile employees, and those actively traveling. With such a diverse workforce to support, a flexible IT support system is needed.
Millennials in particular, are a generation that embrace technology more than any before them. Most shop online, make purchases via smartphones and access business applications on their own personal devices – or would prefer to.
Providing workers with online self-help allows faster access to IT problem resolution, and significantly increases the first contact resolution rate (FCR).
Workers who are not waiting for call-backs from IT are more productive, able to provide better service to your customers, and are free to increase productivity, sales and profitability.
BYOT has become the norm for most businesses, and that environment is growing exponentially. BYOT is not as scary as it sounds. It simply refers to employees using non-business-provided devices and applications to get their work done. Despite this new reality, many businesses’ internal IT teams are not positioned to support this phenomenon.
Partnering with the Right Outsourced IT Support Provider
Finding the right partner is critical to realizing the benefits you expect for your business and employees.
Look for a robust solution provided by an experienced technology leader, offering these essential services:
Employees travelling or located in different time zones or countries need the same levels of support as local associates. Employees should be able to count on support outside of local business hours. There will always be a computer issue on days when your end-users are working around the clock to finish that high priority project. They need to be able to count on IT support.
Workers should be empowered to do such things as reset and unlock their own network passwords, search a knowledge base for potential solutions to problems, and generate a service request when needed. These items need be able to be completed without waiting for an agent to answer a call and resolve each worker’s IT issue.
Secure, searchable knowledge base
A knowledge base should provide comprehensive, self-service solutions to many known problems, and grow as new problems and solutions are recognized and documented. All links provided must be secure and provide end users with tens of thousands of federated, evergreen knowledge articles to search from so that they can self-help.
This is a feature valued by millennials and today’s “road warriors” who conduct business with personal mobile devices. With chat functionality, employees are able chat with a live agent 24x7 about their IT issue and get quick resolution.
Actionable Analytics provide near real-time automated dashboards. You can easily see what is happening with your network and the open tickets IT is working to solve. Items like recurring incidents, common root causes, frequent callers, problem hardware, software types, and other issues take on a new meaning when you can see them in action.
These dashboards will help with ongoing company savings. This visibility will also help uncover opportunities to enhance your overall IT service quality through improved resolution activities, user education, and recommended project improvements.
Choosing Your Outsourced IT Support Vendor
Making the right choice is a big responsibility. Be sure your prospective service provider meets critical criteria – ask these questions:
- What are your requirements for coverage availability to ensure 24/7 is possible?
- Explain your onboarding and implementation process and how that will not disrupt my employees’ daily work.
- How will you demonstrate ROI that meets our expectations and company goals?
- Walk us through how you will support the systems our business and employees use.
- What is your company process for keeping up with new technology?
- Which employee engagement features do you offer? Do they include mobile applications, self-service, knowledge base, online chat, phone, and email access?
Get Additional Strategic Information
Is outsourced IT support the right move for your business?
A good place to learn more is through this informative and comprehensive webinar.
Presented by Melanie Turek, Fellow and Vice President of Research with business consulting firm Frost & Sullivan, the session focuses on how businesses can benefit from outsourcing IT service desk functions to:
- Reduce current costs and control future costs
- Support new technology without increasing IT staff
- Create opportunities for growth and add value for your customers
- Empower employees to solve problems quickly, making them more productive
- Free IT staff for value-added development
- Provide better support and improve satisfaction for employees with 24/7 self-service support
- Improve overall business performance through reduced service response time
Outsourcing ITSM is not a new expense for your business. It is a strategic direction to provide better support and flexibility for your employees and customers - now and into the future.