Today’s entrepreneurs and business owners are used to bootstrapping everything from the ground up and wearing all the hats. This only works for a short while until a business begins to grow and adopts complex needs.
For example, you might start out being able to manage your IT needs, but as soon as you start storing data in the cloud, it’s time to call in a security expert.
While it’s possible to do all of your own IT work in the beginning, it’s not sustainable, and if you don’t get outside help, your business can suffer. Although the commitment is admirable, here’s why you can’t be a one-person IT team.
- Cybersecurity is complex
Data security is an area of specialty that you can’t afford to get wrong. DIY cybersecurity will almost always fail at some point because you can’t learn everything without some kind of formal training. This is why there are so many security certifications available – the knowledge required to secure data is vast and requires a long-term commitment to grasp. If you manage to get by for a while, it’s just a matter of time before critical vulnerabilities are discovered.
The most effective solution to this problem is hiring a managed services provider (MSP) to handle your cybersecurity. Managed IT providers employ the latest security technology, whether it’s hardware or software, and you’ll get access to key services, including:
- 24/7 network monitoring
- Automated threat detection
- Tech support for your teams
- Reduced workload for your in-house IT team
- Access to expertise in every area of IT
- Restricted access based on user groups and device
- A backup and restore plan
- A business continuity plan
- Cybersecurity policy creation for your business
- Cybersecurity training for your staff
- And more
The consequences of trying to do all of the above on your own can be costly. For example, if you don’t encrypt data end-to-end, a data breach could result in regulatory fines that put you out of business.
Many businesses see the value and are now thinking about moving to an MSP. The MSP market is expected to hit $411 billion in 2027, which is more than double what it was in 2019. Unlike other tech trends, this isn’t a fad – it’s become a business requirement.
- You’ll eventually need expert knowledge
Handling all of your IT needs might work for a bit, but what will you do when you need to implement multi-factor authentication across your network and you don’t have the skills? What happens when your main marketing employee gets hit with a ransomware attack and all the data on their computer becomes encrypted? Do you have a backup and restore plan? If so, have you tested your backups to make sure they can be restored?
There are a number of things that require expertise in the realm of IT, and it’s impossible for one person to be an expert in every area. When it comes to IT, you need everything to run smoothly and efficiently, and working with experts is how you make that happen.
- There are too many IT hats to wear
A full IT team tackles far more tasks than you might realize. If you’re trying to wear all the hats, it won’t be possible. For example, you’ll have to tackle all of these tasks (and more):
- Train employees each time you introduce a new system
- Provide constant tech support
- Maintain infrastructures
- Assess and address threats
- Manage data storage
- Monitor vendor contracts
- Update and patch software and firmware
- Ensure you follow and renew all licenses on time
- Maintain compliance with regulatory agencies
- Troubleshoot network issues
- Set up audio and video equipment for videoconferencing
- Fix or replace hardware
- Restore backups
- Procure supplies
- Configure new equipment, like copiers and laptops
- Configure cloud-based environments
- And more
The above list is just a sample of what IT departments do for a company spread out across several different roles on the team. It’s impossible for one person to fill all of these roles on a consistent bases and produce good results.
- It’s exhausting trying to be your own IT team
As a business owner, you have more important things to do than juggle tech support requests, security threats, and network outages. You can’t build your business and run a one-person IT team at once. Your time is better spent growing your business, looking for partnerships, and handling other tasks that only you can perform.
IT teams are departments for a reason
There is a reason large companies have IT departments – the responsibilities are numerous. Most businesses find that hiring a managed services provider is exactly what they need. Others prefer to maintain an in-house team. However you do it, you’ll be more effective when you hire out your IT needs.