Most SME businesses in the UK, unless backed by an angel investor or by rounds of venture capital funding have grown organically, and often from very humble beginnings. This fact is the primary reason some small businesses which should already have IT support on retainer do not, and this in turn leaves the business exposed to potential data loss or vulnerable to data theft, and some only take corrective action once something serious has happened, sometimes so serious that it has the potential to threaten the business itself.
So why does having grown organically, mean they are less likely to have not retained professional IT support for their business? Well, often the technology side of the business begins with a single PC, printer and phone line. This may prove reliable and so a second device is acquired when needed by additional staff, perhaps with some ad hoc support to network the machines. As the business grows further in terms of more staff, so does the technology employed by the business but often without any deliberate planning, and if the business in the early years suffers no data loss caused by equipment failure, or isn’t subject to a cyber attack, then a misplaced confidence naturally grows within the business, that an IT failure is unlikely, and the consequence of a total data loss is never really considered.
So how might retained IT support help an SME business? The first advantage to retained IT support is having a company on-hand which knows your IT infrastructure intimately, you are immediately saving valuable time having the people you need to help on speed dial, rather than you trawling around the internet looking for someone that may or may not have the expertise to help, or even have the time available. So, when issues do crop up, apart from having access to support in one phone call or email, there is also no learning curve needed by the IT consultant before a solution can be found as the support company will have conducted an audit of your systems already. Beyond these time savings, many IT issues can now be solved remotely, so solutions could take minutes rather than you waiting around for hours for someone to turn up on site.
So what if someone at the company has a good knowledge of IT, and they can do much of what is needed to get things working? Well, having someone on site is often welcomed by a good IT support company, but really, they should be seen as supplementary to having IT support on retainer. The most serious IT infrastructure fails will be (understandably) beyond the expertise of someone with just a solid general understanding of IT and its configuration. This means if someone is tasked with the role of IT support in addition to other duties, the person is likely to invest a good many hours trying to find a fix which is beyond them before seeking outside help. This action has not only wasted their time, but the time of other staff who need to work on the affected systems. You also have to consider what happens if the staff with the in-house expertise is ill, or away on holiday perhaps.
If your business has not yet considered retaining an IT support company then feel free to give RML IT Consultants in Cambridge a call to discuss your requirements. Our clients are right across the UK from Leeds to London, and of course we provide IT support in Cambridge to local clients too.